The Filmmaker

Copyright 2008 by The Bard of New Mexico

Feed the bard:

    It seems to me that I live my life always looking through an imaginary camera lens I make with my fingers as a frame of reference, always looking for the perfect angle for the next scene, and hoping someday I can tell Mary Pickford, “Eat your heart out!”  Luckily, I might be able to do just that ‘cause I have a great idea for a movie!

I call my assistant over.  “Hey, Matt!  How about driving me to that wooded area.  You know the one I’m talking about.  It’s the one near the old covered bridge.  We can take that turnoff like we did last summer.”

“Sure thing!”  Matt smiles, evidently remembering how good the fishing was in that little stream up there where only a few people go anymore.  I make a picnic lunch, he grabs his fishing gear, and we hop into his Ford pickup truck. 

We’re whizzing down the highway towards the turnoff and in what seems like no time at all, Matt pulls us onto the washboard road that leads to the covered bridge.  I’m happily holding my hands up, imagining all the possibilities for background shots.  “Beautiful, just beautiful!  Look at that scenery, Matt!”  He mumbles something indistinct, obviously not listening to me.  If I don’t miss my guess, his mind is solely on fishing, if you’ll pardon the pun. 

Anyway, I’m holding up my hands again, looking through my faux camera lens and frame a really beautiful picture out of my passenger side window.  I move my hands back and turn around as we pass the scenery, and I mentally make a note that what I just saw would be a very good opening shot.  Then, the scene suddenly fades to black.

*                   *                     *

“Estelle… Estelle…  Are you with me?”

At first, I don’t know who’s being called, but then I slowly understand that it’s me.  I try to scream because the last thing I remember was the worst headache I’ve ever had.  My scream comes out as an indistinct breathy sound.  Abruptly, I discover my sudden extreme pain is gone.  Still, my mind feels fuzzier than ever and I worry that I’m getting senile in the prime of my life.


“Yes?” I reply.  It sounds strange coming from my mouth. 

I open my eyes and see something strange.  There is an unusual looking car, something that looks like it could be from the future, pulled off on the side of the road and down on the creek’s bank, there is a middle-aged woman in rather unusual clothing.  She is dressed in clothes that appear somewhat like a man’s suit, but it's pink in color.  She is sitting on a small stool in front of battered wooden easel and is painting a picture, a portrait that looks incredibly like me.  I’ve never seen that woman in my life and she’s painting me?

“Estelle,” she begins softly, apparently looking right through me as if she were blind.  She can’t be, right?  I mean, she’s painting me.  “I’m going to be your best friend.”

She’s so arrogant!  Who is this lady?

“Matt!”  My voice sounds oddly disconnected.

“I’ll help you find him soon,” she promises.

“The truck?” I demand.

“Don’t worry about that now.  It’s been taken care of.”

Don’t worry?  Is this lady nuts?

Suddenly, she changes the topic.  “What year is it?”

I’m still fuzzy on details, but I give her my best guess.  “1937?  1938?”

She shakes her head sadly.  Good Lord!  She looks like she’s gonna cry!  “Oh, honey!” she whispers.  “You were in a bad car accident 70 years ago.  You’re dead!”

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