Sunday, May 06, 2007

Luxurious Defiance

After the Terror, in the early days of the Directory, the aristos who'd escaped the guillotine had an ironic fad of tying a red ribbon around their necks at just the point where the blade would have sliced it through, a red ribbon like the memory of a wound. And his grandmother, taken withthe notion, had her ribbon made up in rubies; such a gesture of luxurious defiance!

- Angela Carter
' The Bloody Chamber'

When I stirred from my slumber this morning I was tangled up in a dream of execution. In this nightmare, I had been sentenced to death, for the murder of two men (?? it is all very unclear, both the crime and my guilt of it), but the method by which I was to be killed was a bit confusing. I knew it had something to do with my neck, but although I was to lay on some sort of table, on my back, with a hood over my face, I am not entirely sure it was decapitation, and have an inkling that electricity was involved somehow. Whatever the method, I was none too keen on the idea! There was some odd sort of demonstration/ pre-enactment of the ordeal in a small lecture theatre, where the whole saga was to be filmed for a documentary or trashy current affairs show, and they interviewed my crying grandmother about it, and made me get onto the table to give the viewers an idea of how it worked. And my mother was somehow involved, and my supervisor, but no men, anywhere, even the executioner was female. The court then let me go home, on the understanding that I would return at 10:30 the next morning to face my fate. Instead, I went and hid at my parents house (where I saw my oldest brother, the only male I remember at any time), then panicked as I realised that would be the first place 'they' looked for me, and I needed to find some new escape plan, or at least some way to buy some time and an appeal. Then I woke up for a bit, knew I had to get back to the dream, was still on the run when I did, and then woke up properly without having resolved it! Dang! Have that lurking sense of unfinished business now... Has been a while since I have had an execution nightmare, something which occurred quite regularly for years, but this is the first one I've had in ages where I've actually fought not to die. Usually I'm just all accepting of the fact that its my time to go andjust let it happen. Hmmm. Whatever can it all mean?

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