king’s fool

There would be no wisdom but for the endless generations of fools, clowns and harlequins that have trodden the paths of human antipathy, sympathy and mercy. Therefore, the below inscribed, bears the title indicated.



A stage. Curtains drawn. Two hands part the cloth. A figure appears, clad half in red, half in black, wearing a cap with a number of tails with bells attached to them.

The Harlequin walks up close to the Camera. Close-up: the Harlequin looks straight into the Camera. You look straight into the Harlequin’s eyes.

This is only a game, boy. Somebody’s always the winner. Somebody got to have it. All of it, the whole of it. It’s called the Jackpot, the Big Draw, the Victory. And there is always the lucky one, the one out of the crowd, boy. The one who’s taken the Chance.

A close-up. One of the bells of the Harlequin’s cap swinging noiselessly. No sound perceivable by the ear. Soundlessness represented by the silent swing of the bell’s tongue. Behold the Absence of Sound.

Maybe, kid, none of us will live to see a better day. The better days always pass away unnoticed. We complain a lot, interfere a good deal with what we think are the forces of Nature, and then die. And none of us even notices that among our bad and sad and hard Todays there are splendid times. It’s only when our Today has become a Yesterday, that we start calling it good. Not good but better, kid. The better days are always those well before our time and memory.

Panoramic view of a hilly place. On top of a hill, a flag-stalk. Flag drooping loosely. Very faint wind not able to move the flag. A tiny figure at the foot of the hill topped by the flag. The figure tries to embrace all the view in one glance. It is the figure of the Harlequin, at an enormous distance.

I always sing at work, boy. It helps nothing really. It does not lift up the spirits. It does not make the job easier or less complicated. In one word, singing does not help organise in any way.

I always sing at work, kid, because work demands singing. Nothing sophisticated meant, kid. It’s just that work and song go together.

A view of a distant ruins of a castle in the background. A large puddle in the foreground. Rubbish all over the place.

A close-up of a broken beer bottle. Label visible. A hand reaches to lift it.

A close-up of a bag of rubbish by a leg. The leg is disconnected from the human body. No blood visible.

A distant figure of the Harlequin in the background between the ruins and the rubbish. The Harlequin wears Red and Black for the occasion.

See these, kid. These are daffodils. They come up every spring. For a few days, they blossom. They make the world jolly, even if it rains. When it rains, no matter, water or tears, remember daffodils. They live to give – joy of remembrance.

When it is pouring with tears, kid, remember that you are a daffodil. You live to give joy. Of remembrance. Do not forget, kid.

A close-up. the back of the Harlequin. Two of the cap-bells touching the shoulders. One of the cap-tails is red. The other one is black. The Harlequin is departing. The bells tinkle with every step.

A view of the hilly place. The flag-stalk is broken. The wind is carrying the flag, spread. Half of the flag is red, the other half is black. The Camera follows the flag till it turns into a tiny dot against the overwhelming blueness of the skies.

Be real, kid. There is lots of folks come to see you. Got to work up to it, got to deserve it, kid. They need your pain and your tears. Your pain and your tears are funny. Real funny.

We all have been through it. No body of them wants to see the reality, mind. They come to see the game and want to be sure of its being a game.

See, kid, your pain is a game for them, pastime. Nobody cares what you feel. You cannot feel, you are timber. Or stone.

Get real, kid, play it.

A close-up. An eye watering. A tear forming and running down the cheek leaving a wet track upon it. Another tear follows the previous one.

The Harlequin standing full height, his back towards the Camera. The Harlequin turns his head to the Camera, partially turning his body. The Camera moves closer to the standing Harlequin. A close-up of the Harlequin’s face surrounded by his black’n’red cap. The make-up on the Harlequin’s cheeks is furrowed by tears.

The Harlequin turns away from the Camera. He reaches into his bosom. The next moment, turning completely round, he stretches both his arms forward, in the direction of the Camera. The Camera follows the arm, gradually focusing upon the Harlequin’s heart which he holds upon the palms of both the hands. The Harlequin’s face must not be visible.

A panorama of the hilly place. The figure of the Harlequin with his hands stretched forth viewed from above. Gradually, the distance increases.

Sound of distant muffled laughter in the background.


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