Artist’s Statement: There are several stories behind this film poem. Let’s start with its genesis. A friend had looked over some of my past written works, then started comparing it to my new films. He made an observation: Much of my older written work could be considered stream of consciousness, so I should try to implement that style in some of my film poems.
As the conversation evolved, this suggestion became more of a challenge as we tried to implement rules with how something stream of consciousness could or would be filmed. My first thought was the film would have to be written, shot and edited simultaneously. I still like that idea, but for my first attempt I decided it was a little ambitious. So we decided that the rules would be based mostly around the written word. There were only two rules, but they were tough. I had 30 minutes to write, then 30 minutes to do a reading. Whatever I came up with in that hour would be the gospel, no edits or rewrites. As soon as my friend and I finished our conversation, I started my iphone timer for 30 minutes and went straight to the keyboard and started banging away.
See the full story of the making of the video at rw-perkins.com.
I am awake, I am clean and ready for the day, prepared for the onslaught, feed the dogs, kiss my wife, coffee, 2 sugars, cream, a
midday headache, I toil through the work day, humbled to toil, while I contemplate the small pleasures to come. My emotional locomotive, to be and to breathe, but I am still at the sink, I am still brushing my teeth I am still cleaning my face. Sometimes I’m not sure if the world is still spinning outside my bathroom.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the brain…
I am thinking, I am amused at a funny thing that somebody said to me from the night before, but I can’t quite recall the phrasing, or even the subject. I remember how hard It made me laugh. Now the story isn’t that important, I can’t help but smile. But what the fuck did they say?
I am lost in my head at the supermarket. I am thinking of the inevitable end of my life and about saving 20 cents on an off brand of yoghurt that I know I won’t like. Also “Lost In The Supermarket” by the Clash is now stuck in my head.
I exist, some say as a solitary creature that craves the company and troubles of others. “Wait, who said that? Maybe it was me. I don’t know.” Anyway, as I sit in my backyard and I stare up at the blue sky what was once an endless azure is now speckled, with birds, clouds and jet airplanes, I do not feel small, rather, I feel like a giant. Perspective is important here, when compared to a virtual nothing I think that you’ll find I have, fingers, toes, nose and eyes, so depending on your standards I am, quite prodigious.
I am a voyeur. From the comfort of my couch, my dogs at my feet, I can see the neighbor pace in front of their window. Down
the road, in the distance a jogger runs, wiping the sweat from his brow, patting at his stomach to remind himself what he’s been working so hard at. Following close behind a woman with a baby in a stroller, she’s adjusting her eyeglasses every few seconds, she sees me, she is glaring back at me, with a suggestive gaze. She is saying her day is going about as well as could be expected and she is thrilled that she looks so good in her new sunglasses. As the mother passes, I see the runner fade into the future and I am reminded that the neighbors are now hidden safely in their homes and that the jet airplane overhead is full of self importance, but I can’t help but wonder, can they see me?
I’m awake, I can think, and I exist and I can see that today I am prodigious, and the sky and all that surrounds it, will come and go as I see fit.
Photo: “Lost in the Supermarket” by R.W. Perkins
© 2012 R.W. Perkins. All rights reserved.