THANOS’ SESSION pt. 1
“I’m here… I’m the gentleman… I can’t find my words… I’m Thanos…”
“Come in, this way…”
“Ummm… I don’t know where to begin… I don’t trust psychiatrists or their magic pills. Mr. Grabber –you’re personally acquainted, if I’m not mistaken– gave me a load of antidepressants and I was going from bad to worse. I stopped taking them, but the side effects persist. Could I be addicted? I don’t know… In any case, I’ve now developed a weight on my chest I didn’t have before. I’m unable to leave the house because of it… You know…. I go down into the street… I count the tiles to the next block and then run back to the house. I’m afraid something will happen to me… I’m afraid I’m going to die… I’m afraid of being afraid… Routes that take me far from my house are totally unsafe…”
“How many are the tiles each time?”
“I don’t remember exactly… But every slab has four tiles…”
“And the slab weighing on your chest, how much of a ‘lark’1 is that?”
“Ah, I don’t understand what you mean! May I have a glass of water? Thank you… Well, where were we? Oh, yes! I was driving in the narrow streets of Plaka, here, near your office yesterday, and something inside kept telling me that at the next bend, around the next curve, the ground would disappear from under the wheels of my car… I would hover in the air for a couple of minutes like a cartoon and then… then… my fingers froze on the steering wheel. There was a lump in my throat…. I broke in cold sweat and the honking from the other cars made me pull to the side and park the car. It was horrible… but very stimulating at the same time!”
“Hmmm… it sounds like something out of a movie…”
“Yes… I admit… I like it, but it’s excruciating… my whole body aches during such moments… and then I think to myself: ‘I made it… but I won’t next time… I’ll die…’”
His hands fumble about nervously. They go from stroking a lock of hair to dropping listless from the sides of the couch. His age is indeterminate, but he looks old. Over sixty.
“What side-effects do you experience?”
“Nausea, drowsiness, headaches, not to mention the vomiting… but above all there’s this knotting throat. I can’t tell you how much that knotting hurts!”
“Is it a nautical knot?”
“Mmmm… possibly”, he smiles, “how did you guess, are you a mind reader? My father was in the Merchant Marine but he never travelled. My mother kept him bound ashore”.
“And what about you… after the quackery you got involved with, you probably had no time for travel, across land or sea. Right?”
“No, never… I’ve got one foot in the house on the mainland and the other sailing across the sea to Serifos… but my body remains fixed… frozen… it never travels. That’s why I came to you. They told me you’re against psychoactive drugs. Well, what must I do? Help me! My mind is determined to kill me with a nautical knot!”
“Who does your knot hurt?”
“My father… Oops! Where did that come from? It doesn’t make sense…”
“Ummm… My Adam’s apple hurts since childhood. I couldn’t get a word past my Adam’s apple… I would mutter something and the words would tumble down the depths of my throat. I had no speech. I was nowhere…”
“What about at night… what happened at night?”
“I’d picture the knotting that kept me tongue-tied, and the picture would get so overblown in my head that I relived everything with my body. You know… my body isn’t exactly a body. It’s my pain itself. I am my pain…
”I don’t know what I’m talking about. Images and scattered sounds are jumbled in my mind… Especially the image of a running horse galloping frantically, makes me panic. I’d like to catch it. To haul it and harness it to a cart. To brindle it so it can’t run wild anymore. I shudder when I hear its hooves against the patio in my nightmares. I shudder!”
“What resounds in your home, Thanos?”
He drank a few sips of water and closed his eyes in relief. Something had become stuck in the hard drive of his mind. Something which left its trail, like permanent scratch marks, on the surface of the drive so that it played the same off-key chorus over and over:
I’d risk everything for that little finger of hers twisting around a ginger lock of hair! I don’t want just her little finger; or just her ginger lock. I love the course from the finger to the lock… again and again… and…
It was like the moment after an orgasm… that small piece of her image, that stands out over everything else… the one that turns him on… that one…
“Thanos… Thanos… what resounds in your home?”
Silence… an interpretative section is born from silence.
“Jerome? Did you say Jerome? Perhaps I misheard. My middle name is Jerome”.
A crying spell draws him into a brief, delightful plunge into sadness. His voice wakens his body as it’s resurrected from the slumber of his thought, which encompasses nothingness. The voice stands up. It steps forward. It takes the floor and goes on:
“I don’t belong. I’ve never known a home… (The way he says it, it sounds like: ‘I’ve never known Jerome’.) That’s what I always look for in a woman. Is she the one? Can I build a home with her? I’m fascinated by the eeriness of cemeteries… yes… those family burial homes, surrounded by statues of angels…”
Σημ.: Η φωτό είναι του Σπύρου-Ίωνα Μαρκάτη