Maybe two months ago, I saw the film Brief Encounter. I was devastated. But i've been feeling devastated a lot lately. Things are weird. But Brief Encounter...I haven't been able to get away from it. Last week, I think it was, I couldn't take it anymore and bought the Noel Coward play it was based on - Still Life. It arrived today and I couldn't not just sit down and read it. Which I did immediately, ignoring everyone.
This is a play of restraint. Alec and Laura meet when she gets something in her eye at the train station and he (a doctor) helps her get it out. One accidental meeting, and then another. And before long they are in love. But they're both married with children. (In the movie Laura says, "I was happily married until I met you" or something like that.). In the end, he and Laura agree it's best if Alec moves with his family to a new job in Africa. At their last meeting, a silly gossip friend of Laura's shows up, and Alec and Laura can only shake hands.
There were many parts that got me...one in particular that is so personal right now I won't quote it just so I can keep it to myself. But here is one that I'm willing to share:
ALEC: ...Please know that you'll be with me for ages and ages yet - far away into the future. Time will wear down the agony of not seeing you, bit by bit the pain will go-but the loving you and the memory of you won't ever go- please know that...I love you with all my heart and soul.
LAURA: I want to die - if only I could die.
ALEC: If you died you'd forget me - I want to be remembered.
LAURA: Yes, I know.
This play is a comfort to me right now- there's so much going on. I will carry this around with me for awhile...physically and emotionally.
For those of you who want to watch the film: