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Nostalgia

September 7, 2012

ON FILM

It started as a simple wonder

A man sneezes; a train pulls into a station

Then a kiss, then a man points a gun and shoots.

Moving images, decadent people acting innocent

Innocent people acting debauched

Droll clowns and lovely charmers, strutting heroes, moustachioed villains

Ordinary life and plain folk achieved new stature

Inflated and glorified on the silver screen

That little whirring box is a time machine

We’ve seen the mighty stone elephants of Babylon

Dinosaurs, gladiators, emperors and queens

Fairy tales and myths have been taken from the poets

And crafted by professionals to a semblance of visible life

We’ve seen our ancestors’ dreams of the future

The life span of every creature, every birth and death

Each war is judged by the images that appear

Now the camera sees us everywhere

Private moments have lost their meaning

Unless they’re caught for public exhibition

We play up to it, mug and dress ourselves up for it

Just in case there’s a chance of being discovered

Of it seeing something in us we long to see in ourselves

But we must continue to play with that box of tricks

Insist that the human eye is quicker than its

JPF Goodman

30th September 2006

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From → Critic, Poet

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