By Lana Bella
Autumn Leaves in Another Film
Cinema is the ultimate pervert art. It doesn’t give you what you desire – it tells you how to desire.
― Slavoj Žižek
The one lane highway is jammed with cars, trucks,
motorcycles, stray refuse with orange cones set up signaling to men at work.
She sits in traffic again, cursing at her fellow travelers who
she’d like above all to peel their lot from this wreckage and chuck them across this universe that is heavy in acid rain and diesel fuel.
A quick glance down the dashboard,
she turns up the volume of the radio as Autumn Leaves gushes out in soft refrains, which whirl and climb with every flick of her cigarette
over the ash tray. She sees the smoke nearing her face,
when another scene steals through the amber orbs
and opens the door to a tiny theater, to a see-through figure in another city.
In the film, she is cloaked in wisp of lace and chiffon, running toward
Campo San Fantin Street in Venice,
as the strayed dandelion plumes soar skyward to the brown-tinged rhythms that give signal of a budding autumn.
Oh, how her fingers curl about the umbrella’s stem,
sheltering her frail turns from a mild wind that likewise tears then
lets go of the landscape’s other characters; without foresight, she remembers the Teatro La Fenice ahead, which at the moment is turning up ever more brimful with patrons as the early evening trickles on.
Then all at once, she can no longer sense the shifting rivers of her form,
through the cracked window, everything moves in a real way, scorched sun cracks over metal hoods to skulls,
cigarette smoke stings her on the tongue; she is droning inside this vacuumed hovel where the seconds pass painfully by,
where time is a trapped door staying her from another scene of another film and where she could splay herself beneath an autumn sky open to birds.
That does nothing more than make her dream.
Photograph titled “Do Not Disturb” by Fabrice Poussin, Georgia, submitted to Fourth & Sycamore for this purpose.