It was not planned, the elevator masterclass, it just happened and then onwards became a ‘thing’, a trend, a mantra hailed by all the students of screenwriting.
Hmm! And what about the professors? They are not a fan, and naturally so, for elevators are too congested a place for a class. Many prefer taking the stairs ever since.
Any-Hooghly-who… this is what happened that fateful day.
But first, please watch this Academy Award winning short animation film, Geri’s Game–
Professor A. R Pillai, cleaning his spectacles, enters the elevator when his students, Deva and Lata, come there rushing.
Sir, sir, sir!! – Lata
Sirrrr!! – Deva
They enter the elevator.
Sir, you said Geri’s Game pulled a masterstroke… crux of your 7-day workshop, sir… – Lata
How-how-how sir? – Deva
Well, think for yourself! Now, chess is a complicated game, more so when you’re playing against yourself, right? – A. R Pillai
The elevator door closes.
Sir, you mean this twist, that Geri is playing against himself… – Lata stops mid-way as Professor A. R Pillai, bespectacled, takes his ‘listen-to-me-now’ stance.
That too, the twist, but also the character, Geri, old chap, more of a caricature, he’s determined, hmm, to play chess, game of chess rules his mind, we see it, we stay with him, you noticed his expressions…? – A. R Pillai
Yes… his expressions! – Deva; gesticulates for emphasis.
Who’ll win, what is happening, what is at stake? Music roars, no not literally, it roars and raises the tension, yet it is lovely, the music, there’s conflict, Geri vs Geri, who’ll win, both are one, yet different, you noticed, one is sober, oldie-goldie types… – A.R Pillai
The one with spectacles, yeah. – Lata
Yes, and the other one is cunning, ‘hah-ha’ he laughs, confident… but a fool, the oldie-goldie fools him, tricks him… right? Ah-ha!! And what is at stake? Well, the beaming denture! Oldie-goldie’s smile, literally, and he wins it back. The end! – A. R Pillai
Right! And no dialogues… – Lata
Sir, because animation tends to… – Deva; his question delays itself on hearing the elevator’s ‘tung-tung’ sound.
The elevator door opens.
Nah! Forget that! See every story as a puzzle piece, if it is well-rounded, it’ll fit well, you know, the viewer senses it and takes it along. – Professor A. R Pillai.
He walks out and says without turning back,‘Tomorrow, 9 am sharp!’
‘Yes sir, thank you sir’, say Deva and Lata still in the elevator.
Maybe in the rush to express it all (at times, simply to end the conversation) and in the eagerness to know the answers, all minds in the elevator tune-in to a common harmony.
‘Tung-tung-tong’ – comes a sound that interrupts the narrator.
‘What? Is it still… hello?’, says the narrator, then quickly adds, ‘umm, the elevator suddenly stopped working today… huh, seems like this masterclass will go on for a little longer.’
Dancing and chirping, posing, frolicking, a bird –now on this branch, now on that – living in Godard’s city in black and white 1957, knows not the language and yet doubts Patrick. And rightly so for that philanderer never hesitates; quick-witted, he charms the ladies into believing him and his stories and “well, it is just a coffee date”, he says casually.
Only later do they find – Charlotte and Veronique – why All the Boys Are Called Patrick, because they were talking about the same Patrick, that is why, and look here he goes, in a taxi, with another beauty.
The birdie dares and continues living while in Godard’s city in three back-to-back years – ’64,’65,’66 – the voices – twice in black and white and once in colour – speak the language of simultaneity… and of confusion, surplus, discrimination… expressing it through every medium, especially the medium called love.
Just see, simultaneously in love, out of love, whimsically, the next moment knowingly, executing the plan and fate’s execution, the Band of Outsiders – Arthur, Odile, Franz – dancing the Madison dance, breaking the Louvre record, firing gunshots, breakaway… winning and losing simultaneously.
Dance ‘the Madison dance’ along with the trio –
The Louvre record–
And meet the fool, Pierrot the Fool, who runs away in the search of and is chased by meaning. Along with his ex-girlfriend, Marianne, he protects everything new that he has accepted and acts, confidently and in confusion simultaneously.
Poor Pierrot’s search ends, finally, it does; he finds, though quite late, that he was wrong about Marianne and right about the bomb. But as said before, he was so late that… dhamaka!!!
Next year, in Godard city, the questions ‘he’ asked ‘her’ and the questions ‘she’ asked ‘him’ were all documented; the answers were young, naïve and in late teens and early twenties. Fun and spirit jarred the running time.
A singer, her two girlfriends, a lover, his journalist friend, elections, peace in Vietnam and everything in fashion voted in the favour of 1966 and against each other.
Jean-Luc Godard’s Goodbye to Language (Adieu au Langage), a 3D essay film is a mind-boggling experiment.
Speaking about all that we encounter in life – through a car’s windshield, superimposed images, from a stray dog’s POV, in the colour red, rose red – the narrator speculates, maybe, regarding the dearth of something crucial at the centre and our unobservant impatient nature.
Maybe it shows also the fast culture that admires and nurtures weak concentration. Maybe we have missed the train… but then we can always walk if we remember how to that is.
The fun part is that ‘adieu’ in some parts of Switzerland where French is spoken, the parts where the film was shot, may mean both goodbye and hello.
Godard’s Paris, the year 1960; a criminal, Michel, is absconding and in love with Patricia. The boulevards, narrow lanes, tricky corners, buildings, stairs, doors, rooms, windows are together mocking – in black and white – the seriousness attached to delayed decisions, and also, questioning the pettiness shown towards whims.
Before becoming a news headline, Michel lives a simple life of a goon with a free future in vision and a blurry present; blurry but sweet and tender, like a half-dream seen in a half-sleepy state.
Patricia, an aspirer, a daydreamer, not a native, asks a lot of questions –
“Have you been to Monte Carlo?”“No, Marseilles.”
“What is a horoscope?”“Horoscope? The Future. I wanna know the future. Don’t you?” “Sure.”
“Why are you so sad?”“Because I am.”“That’s silly.”
“What would you choose between grief and nothing?” “Grief is stupid. I’d choose nothing. It’s no better, but grief is a compromise. You have to go for all or nothing. I know that now.”
“What is your greatest ambition in life?” “To become immortal… and then die.”
See, she asks such questions and gets such replies from Michel and others, like Parvulesco, the French writer/ philosopher she interviews in the film. Not always coherent and never definite, the answers make Patricia smile.
The car, the coffee, the cigarette, the smoke, the sprint, the bullet gradually push Michel and Patricia to either take a decision or act whimsically.
They do both – a decision is made, a whim wins over – but the timing and consequences differ. The only similarity is that they both make a news headline-worthy move!
A simplified trailer of a mosaic film –
A simple storyline that Godard twisted and moulded anew every day before shooting, Breathless’ distinctive visual style, editing, character portrayal and life-like quirky humour made it one of the leading films of the metamorphic French New Wave cinema.
The film’s originality and unique construction, after so many eras, continue to reform the cinema.
Experimenting, exploring, challenging fearlessly, Jean-Luc Godard postulated, presented and celebrated a new film philosophy; trying to build a bond with the viewer, his films demand attention, awareness especially if a political joke is being shared or if lovers are looking London talking Tokyo or if life is shown getting a speeding ticket or if an absurd gesture appears twice and the viewer tries to copy just for fun…
“Au revoir, à la prochaine”, said the bird in French i.e. ‘goodbye, until next time’, for the bird has subscribed to an OTT platform where some of Godard’s films are streaming.
Cinema lovers, what’s the time?
Time to imitate Michel’s gesture from ‘Breathless’ where he is shown imitating his favourite American actor, Humphrey Bogart…
On the road you travel with the familiar and the unfamiliar together. Familiar landscape, known route, desired destination, accompanied by your loved ones and yet with an unfamiliar feeling, a comfortable anxiety, a strange pleasantness, a quiet freedom and a quiet fear. It fluctuates, this feeling, it dances.
Maybe it is ‘change’, for the road takes you on a journey and before you realise it, it changes you.
On the road with just the familiar is a routine and on the road with just the unfamiliar is an adventure, for Gelsomina it was the latter.
Federico Fellini, one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, co-wrote and directed La Strada, Italian for ‘the road’, a 1954 film that also won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film (first of Fellini’s total four wins in this category, the most for any director till date).
[Though spoilers cannot ever mar the magic of a Fellini film, still let me alert you that this article will analyse the story of La Strada. So go watch it first if you have not already.]
The vagabonds, the circus, a fatal incomplete relationship, and the seashore – Fellini’s favourite elements to weave a story – all merge harmoniously to create a tragedy that stays with us in the form of Gelsomina’s round clown face and her innocent eyes, a sketch of whom, Fellini said, acted as the germ of a story for this film.
Gelsomina is not like other girls, she is a little bit strange says her old mother who has already taken 10,000 lire from Zampano and is begging her to replace her late sister Rosa as Zampano’s wife.
Crying her eyes out, the old mother cannot let go of her simpleton daughter, but has to do so as then she will have ‘one hungry soul less to feed’.
Gelsomina is confused but excited at the same time as she would get to visit new places and learn to sing and dance.
But when the neighbour enquires about her return, Gelsomina becomes quiet, she goes and sits in Zampano’s motorbike cart (a cart covered with tarpaulin, attached to the motorbike) and leaves crying and waving at her mother, her six younger siblings who run behind the bike-cart, shouting out her name and waving back.
And so, in this sudden, brusque manner Gelsomina joins Zampano, a travelling performer, donning two hats, one as his clown assistant and one as his wife.
A tall, well-built, rough and rogue looking Zampano’s famous street act is to break a 0.5-centimeter thick iron chain bound tightly across his chest; Gelsomina’s role is to first build the tension by playing the tambour, wait for Zampano to show off his strength, and then to go around collecting money in her hat.
Sometimes they perform spoofs where Zampano becomes the hunter, aiming with his rifle at Gelsomina the duck and sometimes Gelsomina the clown dances and Zampano plays the tambour.
While she stays dressed as the clown the whole time, Zampano alters his look from macho strongman to a silly giant, now breaking the iron chain, now playing a simpering buffoon.
And the journey continues, with performing for the audience being the highs for Gelsomina and spending money on liquor and women the highs for Zampano.
“I go away… back to my village… it is not because of the work… I like this work, I like being an artist… but I don’t like you”, says a troubled Gelsomina to a drunk and sleepy Zampano, who asks her to “stop the bullshit”; Gelsomina then leaves.
Reaching the town, she witnesses a religious procession, watches another street performer, Il Matto (The Fool), walking on a high wire, relishes these new experiences, her eyes gleaming with joy.
But this joy doesn’t last for long, as Zampano reaches there in his bike-cart, thrashes Gelsomina and leaves with her, shouting at the silent drunk onlookers.
Who can speak up against the short-tempered strongman, the brash brawn mind, the rude and cold-hearted? Who else, but The Fool?
Zampano and Il Matto hit off on the wrong foot as Il Matto doesn’t stop giggling, teasing Zampano about his chain-act, calling him an animal, telling the circus owner that they indeed needed one in their circus.
In Roma, St. Paul, a world-famous circus Girafa, presents the audience with its amazing acts. Gelsomina, Zampano, and Il Matto perform on the same platform now.
Sticking to their traits, Il Matto jokes around with Zampano in between his act and Zampano chases him, swearing that he will kill him.
Later when Il Matto wishes Gelsomina to be a part of his skit, Zampano roars at him, warning every circus artist that Gelsomina will work only with him.
To cool down a grumbling lion, The Fool strikes again, this time with a bucket full of water and splash, he empties the bucket on Zampano.
Zampano chases Il Matto with a knife; luck favours The Fool as the police intervene.
With Zampano still in jail, Il Matto asks Gelsomina to work with him or join the circus crew, leaving Zampano for good. But understanding Gelsomina’s dilemma, Il Matto tells her that everything, even a stone, has a purpose, and maybe she is meant to stay with the poor brute Zampano.
The journey continues and Gelsomina dreams of marrying Zampano, she believes they are meant to be together; the nun, whom they meet in a monastery where they take shelter for a night, also tells her the same, that “we both are travellers; you follow your God, I follow mine.”
But a reckless Zampano is too numb to think so. Moving towards a disaster, Zampano and Gelsomina meet Il Matto one day; a bitter Zampano hits him twice only to accidentally kill him.
Scared and shocked, he then dumps both Il Matto and his car into a nearby stream and runs away with Gelsomina.
“Il Matto, he feels bad”, says Gelsomina and cries every time Zampano tries to talk to her; she looks shattered, she whimpers or stays quiet.
Zampano asks her if she wants to return home, but she refuses to, saying that Il Matto had suggested her to stay with Zampano.
Travelling in a snowy region, after a gap of ten days, Gelsomina steps out of the bike-cart; a haggard Zampano tells her that he did not mean to kill Il Matto, that he should not be punished for an accident.
Wavering thoughts make Gelsomina enjoy the cold weather and then make her cry for late Il Matto.
Finding Gelsomina sound asleep, Zampano, in his desperation leaves; he keeps some cash, her wears, and the trumpet by her side. He looks at her as he quietly drags the bike-cart, starts it at some distance, and drives away.
A few years later Zampano, now working with another circus group, living with another woman, performing the same chain-act, on a roadside hears the tune that Gelsomina used to play on the trumpet.
A woman who was humming the tune tells him that her father gave shelter to a strange girl some four-five years back and that she picked the tune from her. When he asks about her whereabouts, the woman says that she is no more; the woman asks him if he knew her, but Zampano leaves without saying a word.
That night a drunk Zampano, after having a fistfight with some people at the bar, comes to the seashore, washes his face, sits down, looks at the sky and breaks down. All alone there, he cries.
Gelsomina represents the gentle femininity, one who always forgives, makes sacrifices and is loyal, and Zampano the harsh masculinity, one who is stubborn, insensitive, and also self-destructive; both are the extremes, lacking a balance.
Zampano made it a point to tell everyone that Gelsomina knows nothing and felt jealous if others praised her. At the monastery when the nun is left amazed by how well Gelsomina plays the trumpet (a tune that she picked from Il Matto), Zampano goes to a side and starts chopping woods, to show off his prowess.
He needed her, but could not admit this and thus, never changed his behaviour; in the end, he meekly chose to run away instead of facing Gelsomina’s honest eyes.
Il Matto, whose entry formed a triangle, though acted like a fool, laughing every time in a high squeaky giggling manner, understood them all better. Il Matto valued relations and he valued life, but nevertheless was a lonely soul.
As fate would have it, Il Matto and Gelsomina both die, and Zampano, reaping what he had sown, lives a miserable life.
The melancholic yet dreamy tune that enchants and leaves a listener yearning is one of the key elements in the movie; the entire score was composed by the brilliant Nino Rota.
First played by Il Matto on his kit violin, later by Gelsomina on her trumpet, the tune is a leitmotif that marks these two character’s inner voice.
It is through this nostalgic tune that Gelsmina’s inner voice is heard by those who listen.
The perky track that introduces the circus appropriately captures the attention, alerting the public to gather around and get ready for the show. The element of humour in it announces the arrival of the fools, the jokers, the clowns amongst the crowd.
In a post-world war Italy, when poverty shackled the majority, the travelling performers set out to earn a living by entertaining the masses.
They left their sorrows, their losses behind and moved from village to village, town to town to sing, dance, and make others laugh. A huge responsibility shared by the marginal class.
Through Gelsomina, Zampano, and Il Matto’s lives, we got a glimpse of the world of the vagabonds, the gipsies, the outcasts. They were crude and curt like Zampano, simple and full of warmth like Gelsomina, witty and notorious like Il Matto; they restricted themselves to the periphery, mingling with the rest of the world now and then, living un-noticed, bringing their unique charm and performing spectacles only heard of in tales.
The nomadic still carry magical chalks, bordering the society, with us on one side and all of them on the other side.
On the other side, life is too unpredictable and ruthless; throughout the film, Gelsomina enquired about her late sister Rosa – whether Zampano treated Rosa in the same manner as he treats her, whether Rosa knew about Zampano’s affairs, whether Rosa had met Il Matto – she had taken Rosa’s place but never had wished for the same end. Alas, she had to face it too.
And in this way, the story completes a circle.
Strange for the circus people and even The Fool was Gelsomina, the way she walked, talked, and especially her face; Il Matto in a scene says, ‘What a strange face! Are you really a woman? You look like an artichoke!’, and yet, this outcast amongst the outcasts was the most humane.
Gelsomina’s loving and kind behaviour is a reminder of what Margaret Mead, the cultural anthropologist, had said about civilisation –
“Margaret Mead said that the first sign of civilization in an ancient culture was a femur (thighbone) that had been broken and then healed. Mead explained that in the animal kingdom, if you break your leg, you die … A broken femur that has healed is evidence that someone has taken time to stay with the one who fell, has bound up the wound, has carried the person to safety, and has tended the person through recovery. Helping someone else through difficulty is where civilization starts.”
Quote from Ira Byock’s book ‘The Best Care Possible.’
Directed by – Federico Fellini; Screenplay by – Federico Fellini, Tullio Pinelli, Ennio Flaiano; Story by – Federico Fellini, Tullio Pinelli; Cast -> Gelsomina – Giulietta Masina, Zampano – Anthony Quinn, Il Matto – Richard Basehart; Music by – Nino Rota; Cinematography – Otello Martelli, Carlo Carlini; Edited by – Leo Catozzo
On screen the reality is often dramatized, over emphasised, sometimes underplayed and made loudly fictitious… it is also murdered and often what we see is already dead. To be alive and stay real is not easy; on screen it is tougher. Yet we come across something true all the time.
Coffee and Cigarettes by Jim Jarmusch is one of such films that I find overwhelmingly true. So real and simple that it is difficult, like we all are. I am not talking about the technicalities or even about the film’s theme. I am just happy to feel whatever the film says…
For me it is true and abstract and nonsense and completely real. Just like life is.
P.S.- The blogger wrote this short note back in 2014 when she was studying in the film school.
Keiji comes running to his elder brother Ryoichi and tells him about the bullies. Ryoichi, a great son of a great father, stands up and assures his brother not to worry. Keiji trusts Ryoichi. They can handle the bullies, they are confident. The next morning their father walks with them half way to the school and then leaves for office. Keiji and Ryoichi, near the school gate, find the biggest boy amongst the bullies challenging them. They then look at each other, deciding with a nod what they should do. They run away and don’t attend the school that day.
Yasujiro Ozu’s ‘I Was Born But…’, a 1932 silent film, will remind you of your childhood, the challenges you faced as a child – winning some and losing some, the faith you had in someone great and the dream of becoming someone great. Children’s world comes in contact with the adult’s world. The innocent child doesn’t understand hierarchy or hypocrisy, though he understands power as he finds it in his world as well; power to not to be bullied, power to bully the bully, power to be the group leader.
How in the adult’s world dreams become unreal, fantasies die and realities are numbered, given a name, a social status and bit by bit life is compromised, is what we see in the film, but from the children’s point of view. Children are lively and so is the film. Its comical timing is fantastically perfect. Slowly with the shifts from this to that world, the tone changes, yet maintaining the rhythm throughout.
Understanding anything, anyone is a tough job, some fail to and some refuse to do it altogether. This film takes up this job and finishes it successfully, understanding the child’s dilemmas, beliefs, hopes and displeasure, understanding the adult’s demeanor and how they accept a denouement, understanding the familial ties and the need of tuning it, understanding the melodies of life and how it makes everyone laugh all the time.
An amazingly marvelous film, it must be watched by all those who want to feel the magic of cinema. ‘I Was Born But…’ is one of my favourite films of all time. It is introduced as ‘a picture book for grownups’ and rightly so. The fact that it’s a silent, black and white film doesn’t make it a difficult watch at any point rather this masterpiece flows so wonderfully that colour or sound seems redundant.
All you have to do now is to watch this film, appreciate and thank Yasujiro Ozu for making this superlative work of art.
Xan’s life changed forever. He didn’t change his path; he walked on the path that was meant for him.
Everything revealed slowly and transformed him and made him aware. Xan cared for Duma, loved Duma to an extent that he started understanding him completely.
Though he accepted it only at the last moment, he somewhere always knew that Duma deserves to live a free life.
The laughs, the games, the tears, the silent talks were soon going to be nothing but shared moments stored in an old box kept somewhere in the past.
All Xan knew was that he could open that box anytime and relive those memories – memories of his late father and his lovely friend, Duma.
Xan often thought about Duma and the time they said goodbye to each other. At first, he was skeptical, he thought Duma might be upset with him for leaving, but then, he realised that it was the right thing to do.
He closed his eyes and saw Duma’s eyes –big, beautiful, and alive. Xan was hit by a gust of wind which slowly tried to calm him down and stayed with him until he smiled.
He told himself, ‘Duma must be with his friends right now, going down to the riverside or maybe already there… relaxing under the shade.’
Duma is sitting on a tree branch, one of his friends is sitting nearby and the other one is strolling in the bushes, just like that.
The sun rays are not falling on Duma, but his eyes are shining nevertheless. He can see Xan.
Watch the trailer now –
While these questions circle uneasily in our minds, “Duma” creates scenes of wonderful adventure. The stalled motorcycle is turned into a wind-driven land yacht. A raft trip on a river involves rapids and crocodiles. The cheetah itself plays a role in their survival. And the movie takes on an additional depth because Xan is not a cute one-dimensional “family movie” child, and Ripkuna is freed from the usual cliches about noble and helpful wanderers. These are characters free to hold surprises in the real world.
Roger Ebert, the film critic. Read his review of Dumahere.
Sitting in a theatre hall, watching a film, in light and darkness, in the noisy quietness, I realised how fast everything is moving and how static I am, busy running in my mind, alone.
The image of the yellow flower, growing peacefully in the sunlight is still fresh and I too can feel the warmth. I am running madly and my friends are running behind me, we are happy, and finishing the game means everything to us. There is a rush to catch and not to get caught.
After school hours, it wasn’t a routine to play on the way home, it was us, we were simply playing. I was fast but so were the others, with school bags on our back, we didn’t care of the world around us, we bumped into it passionately and made it alive. The lost adults often said, ‘You kids!’ and we replied with a ‘Sorry Uncle’ and a pure laugh.
The image fades away and suddenly I am walking all alone in the park. It is a rose garden but everywhere I see, the roses are pruned, they look like humans who know how to grow better, but not how to live. Wild roses are happier.
The protagonist is running wildly, furiously, shouting to express his anger…. When did I last run like him, wildly, shouting to express my anger, my happiness? Just before I was pruned, I guess.
Soon I’ll be forced out of this strange meditation class, soon the film will get over. The lights in the theatre hall will make me blind. But before that happens, let me take one last plunge, in that same memory that doesn’t leave me, of that yellow flower.
I walk passed it and then came back, I sat next to it and observed it. My friends were not around and the nature was talking and I was listening.
Why was that little yellow flower getting the entire attention there; the sun rays were perfectly falling on it and the trees were providing it enough shade, the earth was softly wet and the pebbles were guarding it in a funny way. I looked at it for some time and then one of my friends called out for me. I wasn’t startled; the spell broke but I was charmed and the feeling survived. It’s still living.
The film is going to end; there is a wave of calmness and acceptance in the air. People will clap and the ‘hypnotised all’ will come back in the normal world.
And I…I am not sure about myself, I like being in light and darkness.
When choosing my flower’s colour /
Blindly I pick all – the sun decides /
Which one suits me more.
A storyteller, following the ancient tradition of cave chroniclers, standing in vrikshasana (the tree pose) on a hill top (it is sunny, but windy), breathing in and out stories (relishing it all, but at times overwhelmed), declares animatedly that she will continue to – tell stories, share rare story gems, and connect with the pacy universe while also keeping the website ad-free.
Big thanks to my readers. Stay tuned!
Also, a humble request to the new subscribers to check the spam folder after subscribing. Silly (but necessary) confirmation emails often land there instead of the bright inboxes. Merci!
Chiming Stories (formerly Home Chimes)
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Gabbeh, the 1996 film, is a simple tale of a gipsy girl, her clan and the way their life goes on. Unfolding beautifully just like an artist painting a canvas, Gabbeh quietly touches the grand questions.
Godard… Breathless and Alive
A Tribute to Jean-Luc Godard, the Film Philologist who Reinvented Cinema.
Arthdal Chronicles is a South Korean fantasy drama TV series that takes us back to the Bronze Age in a mythical land named Arth, where different human species and tribes struggle to be on the top of the power pyramid.
Yes fly! For walking on the second track is dull and usual, but dreaming high, high, high requires tools. Tools like the right pair of shoes, a chirpy, gritty soul that eats butter-jam dreams, a soul that drinks milky-milky creams.
Universe’s a Disciplined Place
Silver cascade shimmering the night sky, music to the waves and surreal beauty to the eyes, the Moon loves the art of discipline.
It may be difficult to believe for the Moon’s splendour defies time, it stupefies the clock, it follows the path of a dreamer, but how could this be possible if the Moon knew not discipline?