Beanery Online Literary Magazine

April 28, 2009




Sal Martin


     Another sleepless night. The third action hero has won out over the bad guys. The same news report has been reported for the hundredth time. I have memorized the weather into next week, not that it matters to me. I’m not going anywhere. I have an emphatic limp. I walk with a “walker” while my new knee heals. I try to show gratitude that such miracles are available for me instead of the rocking chair and cane that would have been my fate in earlier times. But it is taking a long time. I wander into fantasies of how I could impress the world. Into my fantasy world comes Vanessa. 

     Vanessa has a large skirt, and a large cape of tweed. She has a slouch hat that obscures her face. BUT, she is magnificent. She walks with a cane. She has difficulty walking with a cane because she has only one leg. She was horribly beaten by the Brown-shirts. But she walks magnificently with a cane.  I must practice magnificent with my walker. No, I’ll not bother. I’d never get away with it.

     Vanessa enters the dark, dingy cafe where she is meeting her bird-brained American friend, Jane. This Jane is not the Jane of “Jane, you slut.” That’s Jane Curtin. This is the flake Jane, Jane Fonda. They both had to travel dusky streets and dark scary European railroad stations to get to the cafe. Vanessa is conspiring against the Jew hating Brown-shirts and Jane is the sucker employed to do a dangerous thing. If Jane or we never quite understand what an enormous hat has to do with horrible Hitler politics, it’s OK. Not necessary to understand. Vanessa goes on to her horrible fate at the hands of the brown-shirts and Jane goes to USA to spend the rest of the movie with Jason Robards on a deserted island wearing really great sweaters.

     Somewhat after this move, I think, Vanessa Redgraves spits into the face of the world (hopefully not the Queen) by defiantly bearing a bastard child. No matter, she is still the magnificent actress of the Brits magnificently royal family of actors and actresses. The blatant feminist is forever magnificent.

     This morning I wept for Vanessa and the child so suddenly taken from her. How could it be?  A minor fall in a beginner’s class on a bunny slope. The child, Natasha Richardson, is now 45 but has a fresh and spring-like beauty of delicate features and sparkling eyes and joy. How unlike the grumpy Vanessa and her long, hard face. Perhaps I was mistaken. She’s not Vanessa’s child who had been thrown into the waste can of liberal politics. But she is. And she is brain dead.

     Liam Nieson is her husband; father of her children! I did not know that Liam had married into the Redgraves and Richardsons. I weep for him and for Vanessa. They have that horrible decision to make. 


Epilogue: They made it. They pulled the plug. She is dead. How sadder than the saddest movie is their life.

     So I am weeping again. Well, they trained me well.


After the epilogue: A brain surgeon from Pittsburgh called one of my talk radio guys to say that if she had been skiing at 7-Springs Ski Resort (Southwestern PA), a helicopter would have whisked her to Pittsburgh or Hershey and the blood clot that killed her would have been found and removed. She would be walking out of the hospital tomorrow. He went on to say that in all of Canada, there are the same number of brain surgeons as there are in Los Angeles.



Spring…the joy and pathos of the…DANDELION





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