Sidey’s weekend theme is illusion. There is a phrase descriptive of the theater (and to a lesser degree, perhaps, to film) known as “the willing suspension of disbelief.” In order to enter into the action unfolding on stage, to be completely absorbed in the story, to feel a part of it, the curtain must disappear, the dividing line of the stage proscenium must dissolve, so that nothing separates the audience from the play. Now, since you know consciously that the action on stage is a play, that what is happening, even though it might be telling a true story, is not in reality taking place, there must be that “trick of the mind,” a trick that you allow to happen, a “willing suspension” not of your belief in what you witness, but your disbelief. That gun being fired has real bullets, and the victim that falls is really dead. Your conscious mind knows that is not so, but you willingly circumvent that knowledge, and yield it over to the joy and/or intrigue that is happening on stage.
In his play “As You like It,” Shakespeare wrote,
“All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts. . .”
So, if we view our lives in that way, and watching the play unfold, do we apply our “willing suspension of disbelief” to all that we see and know of our lives? Just a thought.
All that aside, when I saw the theme for this weekend, I immediately thought of magic, and this poem wrote itself:
©Paula Tohline Calhoun 2011
It must have been some spectral art,
And my willing suspension of disbelief.
That a wizard could have cast his spell
And without so much as a fare-thee-well
Leave me, taking like a thief
My sense, my reason, my stony heart.
He left me naught but this delusion:
That stuff and nonsense, mirth and merriment,
Could take away my cold dispassion,
Or banish it, in magic fashion,
So I’d not know just where it went,
And gladly hold to joy’s illusion.
Sometimes, it’s a good thing to hang onto your illusions; to willingly let go of common sense and reason, to drop your disbelief. Maybe this unseasonably warm weather we are having in my part of the country has given all of us here the illusion that “Spring has sprung.” I think I’ll enjoy that illusion – as long as it lasts – until Winter has its final say before departing for the year.
So, with Spring in my heart, I wish you all, my Gentle Readers, enough. . .