sidebrow

from Mother, I

Scene 49. Int. Later that night. Inside Bains-Douches, nightclub.


Without transition, we find Pierre in a sea of sweaty faces, pressing in on him, a collection of shadows, eyes, hair, shimmying to the thumping music, which he doesn’t quite hear yet, in the dead of his own night, his own black fosse. When the heavy amplified sounds finally reach him, it’s as if they have dragged him from under; his hand flies to his throat aware of a sudden ache there, a white patch in the strobe light. In between the dancing bodies, naked arches rolling this way and that, the flesh grows like a forest, snaking arms, cupped breasts, the long border of skin. Pierre lets the night have its way. Slow dissolve to a young dancer splashing her tresses onto him, whispering. Their conversation weaves in and out of earshot; what words can we imagine to draft this scene, to affix our initials on the dog-eared and yet always unlearned script of seduction? The veracity here can be shored up only by filming the scene as a question mark—the panic symmetry between night’s beauty and unknowing is what brought our lead to the dance floor. The rest is nothing but referential sawdust under evening pumps.