The Projectionists - Poem by Bill Smith
I want to kill them
They are working together
Together, they are making me miserable
But to kill them would be to kill part of myself
I can live with the one loading the film into my memory
He aint’ so bad
Yet there are things I would rather forget
If only he would let me
At least those things actually happened
Maybe not in the way he projects them
But basically they are true
No, it is the other one that worries me the most
The one that keeps me awake at night
Maybe there are two and they work shifts
For sure my imagination works plenty of overtime
Film after film reels through my head
Leading me to this……
Were the curtains you opened with lies?
Worth the deception the rain of despise
As you lay with your lover between sheets of smiles
Was there a spare thought for me, the tears I might cry?
Did an inch of guilt creep from your heart to your eyes?
Were you sure I would smile and wave goodbye
When you spoke my name was there a hint of love
or just hate?
While you undressed before him did he take me side?
Spare me the indignity that I slept on his shadow
I don’t want answers to questions not asked
But the film keeps on loading
The reels will not snap
I’m getting so tired of re running this crap
Was his breath hot on the nape of your neck?
Did your lips kiss their way to his rising sap
I close my eyes but the film runs on
They are working together
They’re having such fun
Did he reach for your leg as you drove in the car?
Where the laybys you used blessed by a star?
Was it all so wonderful, new and pine fresh?
You can tell me now I won’t think any less
Yes I’m thinking in colour, speaking black and white
They want me to rhyme and I’m too weak to fight
I’m seeing him holding you while laughing at me
I’m seeing pictures that could never ever be
But I can’t hear your voice the films have no sound
Can’t hear you say you love him or other things profound
I can’t hear the noises you made making love
Which doesn’t really matter cos’ the film is enough
To give me nightmare, bring me out in a sweat
As the memory man loads a film of regret
Where a touch or a word, maybe a kiss
Would have strangled at the birth the beginning of this
The films keep on rolling scenes often repeat
Though the actions different it’s really quite neat
How they change the movements but the endings the same
They’re really very good at this knife twisting game
I’d get me a gun, a knife or some pills
Kill the bastards, push them off the rails
But I can’t do that without hurting myself
As the projectionists take another can from the shelf
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