Tom in Greece (Tom à la Ferme) του Μισέλ Μαρκ Μπουσάρ, σε σκηνοθεσία του Σαράντου Γεωργίου Ζερβουλάκου | Tom in Greece (“Tom à la Ferme”) by Michel …
Scene 1
August. Around midday.
In the backyard.
A stain.
Yellow, dirty.
I can't take my eyes off it.
That's what I want.
To make it disappear.
There are no flies. Weird.
I imagine a fly on the knife.
At last I think of something else.
As soon as I think of something else,
the other things rush back;
obsessions. Nightmares. Torture.
Like… a fucking fly that won't go away.
I imagine you're little. You're trying
to climb on the backyard table.
For a glass of milk. A cookie.
Your mother says,
"Watch it, you'll hurt yourself."
No. It's not working.
I'm in your house; it's not working.
What are you doing in my house?
Sorry. All I had was your address.
I drove all the way nonstop.
It was a lot farther than I thought.
My GPS kept saying: Recalculating!
Recalculating! Recalculating!
-Were you a friend of his?
-I'm Tom.
Tom who can't get up;
can't stand up; can't straighten up.
Tom nailed to his chair;
tied, chained, stuck,
restrained, soldered, glued to his chair.
who should hold out his hand.
Take her into his arms.
Sorry my boy.
Not prepared for a funeral;
and this lunch.
How to know how many people.
Unfortunately, I couldn't find a hotel.
Or Airbnb!
You expect too much. Rooms available only
around Assumption time. We're no resort.
Just trying to get some agro… agritourism.
What's for them to do here, look at cattle?
Seen one, seen them all.
Nice car you've got.
I'm too young for this.
Condolences. Funerals. Mourning.
Too sensitive, delicate. Can't stand grief.
My condolences.
I should have begun with that.
-Deeply sorry for your loss, Μrs…
-Agathi. Glad you're here…Tom?
She said my name. My first name.
The ice is breaking.
He never mentioned you.
We're freezing again.
Say something.
I almost ran over a chicken.
Crossing the road. A big, red coxcomb.
Wearing a coat in summer?
In this heat? It's sizzling.
Oh, well. She could have said,
"To hell with you, toots.
"Hit the road, you and your posh car.
Watch out for chickens."
I'll take off my coat.
Welcome my boy, take a seat.
Never mentioned me?
He never talked about his friends.
I was wondering if he had any.
A big, red coxcomb in the middle of the road
out of nowhere.
It makes sense… such a good, clever boy
…must've made people jealous.
I might have got a ticket.
Don't tell me you're leaving.
I won't hear of it. No way.
As soon as he arrived, he'd say, "I'll be leaving
tomorrow." But you're going to stay.
-I don't know, we'll see.
-I won't hear of it. Hush!
You'll say a few words at the funeral.
You have a way with words.
Let them know what a fine lad he was.
I've actually prepared something.
You're such a dear boy. Tom?
She keeps saying my name,
as if trying to make me real.
How about braised chicken?
I can heat it up for you.
I'm not hungry.
But I'll have some. If it's no trouble.
-Frangos knackered it.
His brother! His twin!
-You had a brother?
-Milking is done.
I'll heat it in the microwave. Bit noisy,
but good value. I hope it's all right with you.
Frangos takes care of the cattle.
Ever since their father died.
She's talking to you. Reply.
Forty eight animals.
She's talking to you. Say something
Cows are an everyday thing.
Morning and night.
Christmas, Easter, Winter, Summer.
Say something.
Sundays, holidays. If you want to go out,
you have to tend them first.
And when you get home at night,
same thing all over.
He never mentioned me.
What about you, what do you do in life?
Answer her.
Answer her.
Assistant to the art director,
the art department in an ad agency
Said like that in the backyard of a cattle farm,
out in the sticks,
with the noise of a microwave
in the background.
The art department. House music, high heels,
the scent of Galliano, Miyake.
Stiletto heels and Miyake.
Around the yard. On a farm with cows.
House music, high heels,
I worked with him.
We worked together.
-Oh, colleagues.
-Colleagues, associates, coworkers.
-So…you were coworkers.
-Coworkers. Let's start with that.
A bit of butter on your food?
From our own animals. Don't say no.
Yes, no, a bit of butter? Whatever.
-You'll sleep in his bed.
-We'll see.
-I'll make the bed.
-We'll see.
I make sure the sheets are clean,
though no one uses them.
The stain is gone. All that's left is the chicken.
Red coxcomb. On the steaming tarmac. Come off it.
I don't know why I didn't scream
when I saw you.
I should have. A woman walks into her house
and finds a strange man.
Now, I should stand up and leave,
re-become a stranger.
The only person who should have come
isn't here.
Who is the only person who…?
-Is this a way to act? What do you think?
-Who is the only person who should be here?
God Almighty! Is this a way to act?
There are so many stains.
-You're wearing his cologne.
-There are so many stains everywhere.
Frangos leaves his dirty fingerprints
I'm in the wrong house, that's what. There's
grief here, too, but it's the wrong house.
Scene 2
Sweltering heat.
Tom is taking off his clothes.
He's all alone.
"Slip your briefs down.
"Slowly. Slowly.
"To your ankles…
"Yes, slowly."
"You liked that. Yes, like that.
"Now off with your T-shirt.
"Take it off…
"Hands up, show me your armpits.
"Put one hand on your belly.
"Slowly. Lower. That's good.
"A woody scent. A touch of rum.
"A blend of patchouli, vetiver,
Peruvian cedar."
The skinny salesman
was giving you the eye.
You said, "A scent of absence of testosterone."
Didn't you?
I can hear your mother crying.
Dinner too rich, it's working its way up.
All the way to spitting everything out.
Is this the right time for everything
to come all out? Here and now.
Here or in the bathroom
with your mother crying next to me.
Tomorrow, I'll get dressed up for you,
one last time. Just for you. I'll tell them,
"Today, part of me is dying.
"I don't know enough synonyms for grief.
Loneliness. Anger. Anger. More anger!
Nothing but anger."
I'd rather be dead. Me.
A sound.
If you tell my mother who you are,
I'll feed you to the dogs.
Nothing will be left of you,
d' you hear? Nothing.
If my mother mentions a Helena who
didn't show up, you'll say you know her.
Tell her that she speaks no Greek,
that she worked with him.
You'll tell her she is blonde, thirty,
a heavy smoker.
You hear?
Blonde, thirty, smoker, speaks no Greek.
Tell her that Helena likes pasta. Loves it.
Just say my brother loved her.
So, now you can breathe.
Go ahead, breathe!
I knew you'd show up some day.
I don't know you.
I don't even know your name,
but I knew you'd come round one day.
You know, behind the slaughterhouse,
there's an old cattle pen
where we dump
the dead and sick animals to rot.
Nobody will ever notice one more carcass.
And believe me, nobody will bother
to go snooping around there.
Stray dogs pick everything clean.
Do I make myself clear?
So, you'd better do what I say.
No more, no less.
My mother is sad enough. She doesn't have
to know who her son really was.
She's been through a lot.
My father worked himself to death.
Allergies from the cows.
And now her youngest son's gone.
That's more than she can take.
More than she should have to take.
You're not to make her feel worse. Clear?
You'll say something nice at the church,
then you'll get in your fucking car
and drive away. And that's the end of it, ok?
Then my mother will calm down and forget.
And she'll let him out of her life.
Then everything will be as it should.
tomorrow, no cologne.
When men use cologne, it's for their wedding.
Tomorrow, it's a funeral.
Scene 3
In the yard, day.
Tom is wearing the outfit
from the previous scene,
in full contrast to the surroundings.
He smells of cologne.
I see you in some faces, lose you in others.
Someone turns away, I see your neck.
Another, your hands.
Your family! Lined up in front of me.
Last year's clothes at a clearance sale.
Cheap textiles wrinkled like scrotums.
One of your aunts is telling me
about a cousin who studied "abroad".
A mustachioed guy
tells me about his dame.
It's about her not fixing her milkbags.
And I think he's talking about a boob job.
A family.
A family you had managed to forget.
What you chose not to remember.
I learned it all. I saw it all.
How many rooms in their houses,
who had the flu of late,
all their "let-me-show-you" pictures.
Υour mother going from one person to the next,
saying, "He and Tom were colleagues."
The plaster is peeling off the walls.
Even the saints, their hands joined in prayer,
are begging us, it's like they're saying
"Get me out of here!"
Behind the electric candle flames.
And chanting, endless chanting.
Nothing is the way
you would have wanted it. Nothing.
An Evzone escort. Lilies and lilacs.
Nothing like that.
Just four pallbearers in grey
pushing the box on a trolley.
The only sound to be heard is that squeak.
The box, and you, inside the box. You
inside it, inside the box.
You in a wooden box. Me on the bench.
Pointless Dolce, pointless Gabanna.
Pointless and…
"Have you known each other long?"
You could say that.
"You knew him well?" You could say that.
"It's a pity the girl didn't come, his lady.
I would have loved to meet her."
The chant torture is over.
Your mother gets up.
Walks up to the mic.
Your mother in the middle
with the mic. Mute.
She turns to me. Extends her hand.
Your brother's looking daggers.
All eyes are on me.
The definition of silence:
someone staring silently at a mic.
Everyone waiting for me to speak.
If I did, I'd say who we were
to one another, what we were.
The one for the other. The one without the other.
The one with the other.
I turn around. I run out of the church.
I, the boy-widow, run away. I leave.
Why didn't you speak, asshole?
Didn't I tell you to invent
something beautiful?
You're not going to hit me!
Why did you leave my mother
up there in front of everyone? Why?
I can't stand seeing her like that. I can't.
The chicken.
I had indigestion from last night.
Speak up!
And didn't I say we don't use cologne?
A reflex. A mere reflex.
I answer like a terrified puppy.
Your voice is familiar. I've heard it before.
One day, on the phone.
I called him about
some paperwork for the farm.
"He'll be coming home for supper.
Can I take a message?
"Can he call you later this evening?
"We're leaving on vacation tonight,
-"for Paros…"
"Antiparos … Who's calling?
"Who's calling? Hello?"
"Who's calling? Hello?
One day, way back, I looked under his bed.
I found some notebooks.
Drawings of men.
Poems about men too.
Then I called your place.
"Can he call you later this evening?"
I knew you'd show up some day.
Be warned, if you don't set things right,
you're not leaving this place.
Set things right?
You want to sit down, mother?
A huge plastic bowl. To match the setting.
She can tell he's hit me.
What's the matter, Tom?
You don't look too well.
-Dinner was too rich for him.
-Pity. I wanted to hear what you'd prepared.
I hadn't really prepared it.
It was a bit chaotic.
-I was so sure you'd be..…
-Pathetic? Gloomy? Reassuring?
At the agency, people call me "Mr. Synonym."
I look for equivalents.
What stands for the thing
that is like the thing without being the thing.
They really appreciate it
in the focus group meetings.
A focus group is…
The idea of explaining a focus group to them,
makes me queasy more than the chicken.
-The chant was nice.
-The priest's nephew was really something.
He's going places, he's really talented,
you'll see.
They're waiting for us now.
-I'm so sorry about the chicken, Tom.
-I'll get over it.
I made too much tzatziki. Again.
I've always hated it.
It's ugly. It's pale. Revolting.
Cold cucumber, cold yogurt.
Fucking cold.
I always make too much and you can't freeze it.
Cucumbers and yogurt, fucking cold.
Yes, I used a swearword.
I've got the right.
You can serve a great salad and cheese pies.
They'll say you should've made more tzatziki.
Cucumbers and yogurt.
My family says I make the best tzatziki
in the world.
Just my luck. I'm the best in the world
at what I hate doing.
-Take the weight off your feet, sit down mum.
-Does it hurt less? She should've been there.
She has no heart. That's all there is to it,
-Heartless, right, buddy?
-That's right. Heartless.
Just now, when they were bringing the
coffin out I saw a shoe on the marble step.
You see? A shoe on the marble step.
And I got to thinking.
It brings a pallbearer down, then another
and another and then the coffin.
It tips over. I scream like crazy. Everyone screams.
In the name of God.
At no time had we heard so many saints'
names all at once.
Two pallbearers were trying to grab hold
of the coffin. They missed. The lid came off.
Nothing! Empty.
Nothing in the coffin. I keep saying,
"Where is my boy's body? Where?
"He had been dead for three days and
those who were mourning went to his grave,
but it was empty He had been resurrected,
but no one recognized him!"
That's the story the priest has just told us.
Let it be, mum, let it be.
I'm glad that you're here, my boy.
Tom, shouldn't we tell her now?
-Tell her that she's just called?
-Called? Who?
-Tell her. Now.
When I got back, the phone was ringing.
I answered.
-Who was it?
-She who?
-You see, mum?
-I see. What did she say?
I can't answer for you, my boy.
You answered the phone. Speak up.
I don't know what they said. When I got back
from the church, he was just hanging up.
You're going to tell us, right, Tom?
Hi Tom! This is Helena.
In our language?
Of course not. She said…
So, she said something foreign.
Frangos! Shut up!
Part of me died today…
and I can't cry
I don't know the right words for grief.
I feel alone, empty.
Rage, nothing but rage.
Tell them I would have liked to meet them.
It was he who didn't want it.
He always said love was between two people.
No friends. No family.
And Tom, tell them too that he was the first.
The one who proves such a thing can exist.
Tell them that he loved my face when I smiled.
He loved my laughter
and did everything to make me laugh.
Tell them about his arms that held me prisoner,
then released me, then held me again and again.
Tell them that some days,
just from the way he walked,
I could see that it would be a wild hump.
-And then she hung up, eh Tom?
-A hump, like an animal.
And she hung up?
Tell them that I hate him
for leaving me behind, abandoning me.
He was a bit late. So what?
He was in a rush to pick up his jacket
from the dry cleaner's.
He'd be a bit late.
That was no reason for going too fast.
I heard the ambulance sirens.
Two blocks away from the agency.
Then the phone call. Mouths all around
whispering his name. Time comes to a halt.
It happened at the big intersection.
I race down the stairs to the big intersection.
An ambulance disappearing in the distance.
The zigzag marks on the pavement
is all that's left.
like a signature on a contract with death.
The smell of gas. A shattered mirror.
Glass everywhere. Like glitter.
His bike A torn jacket. A cracked helmet.
And blood, blood everywhere.
-And she hung up?
-That's right. She hung up.
That felt like she was with us.
Thank you, my boy.
Just a phone call. Nothing more.
She should have been here.
She should have said those things.
-"A wild hump" at the church? Really, Mum!
-At least someone would have said something.
Well, children, what with this and that,
we mustn't forget the milking.
-Frangos will show you how to do it, Tommy.
-Frangos will show me what?
I'll find you a proper outfit.
You can't work in my barn like this.
Give him some of your brother's old clothes.
Frangos will show you how to go about it.
Scene 4
In the fields.
Early evening. Around sunset.
Tom is wearing his dead lover's old clothes.
A dog is growling in the background.
Your clothes are too big for me, as always
Too recent to be vintage,
too scruffy to be "Paul Smith”.
Not enough holes in your belt.
Gym: You start out with a trainer
and a protein drink.
I used a rope to keep your pants up.
I might have just started a new trend.
Is this going to take much longer?
I went to all the best schools
and now I'm sloshing about in shit.
You really impressed me back there.
You gave me no choice, I had to lie.
I'm talking about the cows.
You're good with animals.
I saw you pat them.
I had no idea
there were so many techniques.
In milking, I mean.
There's no stopping progress.
They even have laser jobs these days.
That would be much faster, easier, cleaner.
It's all automatic.
The machine finds the udder by itself.
You just press the button
and everything falls into place.
The machine fits onto the teats
and does the job. Not a drop is wasted.
Yes, amazing.
You hear the dog barking? That means
there's wolves over there. A whole pack.
During those guided tours of the farms,
there were lots of Chinese who came out here.
They travelled halfway round the world
to take pictures.
That must mean they like it here.
It's the corn if you ask me.
Corn in every field.
We turned our villages
into swamps to grow more corn.
Did you notice how many villages
have been abandoned?
You don't have any neighbours
in the wider area?
No. They're all gone, why stay?
Some Chinese came to the village once.
I brought some out to the pen.
They wanted to see wolves.
They'd been told about wolves tearing up flesh.
We found them there in the muck.
They have this bloodthirsty look and growl,
"Touch my food and see what happens."
Farther off, there was one
playing with a little hare, still alive.
He kept nudging it with his paw
to get it going. The hare was trying to escape.
The wolf was tiring it out,
then letting it go,
he would catch it, rough it up,
play with it again, before the final move.
How come nobody talks to you?
Yesterday at the funeral,
nobody came up to you.
I don't give a damn about them.
I guess they don't give a damn about me.
-You know any?
-Any what?
Chinese, you jerk. What a question.
I did an MA in Shanghai,
the Arts Development Center.
Good for you.
-You did a good job.
-I like animals.
No. I'm talking about Helena.
-Are you serious?
-You did good.
-Not really.
-Mum was really happy.
Not really.
I promised my brother, I won't say a thing
to Mum about his little secret.
But I asked for a picture of him with a girl.
Any girl, as long as she's pretty.
We called her Helena, Ellen, Helen, whatever.
But I think her real name is Sara or something.
They worked together.
The stylist? Who works at the studio?
He's got his arm around her in the picture.
The alcoholic motormouth?
The cokehead?
They're sitting on his motorcycle.
She's wearing a pink helmet.
By the end of her shift
she'll lap up anything.
Mum liked her.
You should see her when she's pissed.
She's got bug eyes, like a cow.
She adds two syllables to every word.
She speaks like a German horse.
She's just getting around to Greek.
She can’t even say her name.
A real Schumacher on the Xerox machine,
copies everything she finds.
And she finds everything "artistic".
Entire forests are being cut down
to support her photocopy addiction.
Sara, the stylist! That's a laugh, buddy.
They're kissing here, buddy.
What a stupid idea, staying on here.
Good God, it's sick.
I'm going. That's enough. Over and out.
Where are you going?
I'm telling your mother the truth
and I'm out of here!
You're not telling my mother anything.
Let go of me.
-You don't enjoy being around me?
-I sure I enjoy it.
He raises his arm to scratch his back,
and I'm scared stiff.
I'm ready to get a beating.
In the belly, the neck, the stomach.
I saw a gas station across from the church.
I'm going to fill the tank and take off.
Now? Just as we were starting
to get along?
Getting along, yeah.
Getting along too well.
I like being with you.
I enjoy it, like you say.
Being around cornfields and
wolves tearing apart rotting meat.
And being around Chinese
with pretty little eyes
and a braindead alcoholic bride.
What are you doing you fool?
Is this your way of getting attached?
Stupid. Stupid joke. Just kidding.
Stupid joke. Stupid. Stupid.
Can you hear that?
Yes, I hear your goddamn dog!
-It's suppertime.
-Suppertime at 5. Too early for an aperitif even.
Scene 5
Evening, in the backyard.
It's very hot.
Agathi is ironing men's underwear.
Frangos is fiddling with his cell phone.
Suppertime! How many times must I say it?
-Maybe he's not hungry, mum.
-Not hungry? He hasn't eaten all day.
Let's hear you explain this.
What's with the bandages on his wrists?
-I took him to the doctor.
-The doctor? I see.
-He hurt himself.
-Working, mum. In the barn.
Both wrists? Tough luck.
He tried to pick something up. Why?
Do you want him to leave? Is that it?
He can't drive with his wrists in that state.
-How would he handle the wheel?
-I can drive him, if you want.
-Drive him home. Their place.
-No one asked you to drive him home.
-He's really good with cows. Milking.
-I knew it. He's got what it takes.
Last night, when I opened the door
to your bedroom,
I saw two little heads on two pillows.
As if nothing had changed. Like when
you and your brother were little.
That made you happy?
But he fusses with his hair a lot.
Always looking at himself in the mirror.
I even caught him looking at his bum.
-Do you look at your bum?
-No need. The whole village sings its praises.
I can hear them talking
like it's the first time.
The house should be full of people. That's
how it is in the movies when a loved one dies.
Full of people. People smoking,
moving in slow motion.
Whispering, then there's always someone
who gets the giggles
-and says: Sorry, it's just that exhaustion.
-It's just that exhaustion.
Tom, how many times must
I call for you, child?
The phone never rings.
Even the TV is on mute.
The only visitor is the guy who comes
to the barn to pick up the milk.
His shirts are like tissue paper.
His pants are made of linen. He's so neat.
Everything's carefully folded.
-She went through my suitcase, that's clear.
-Everything fancy, like for a wedding.
She hung my clothes up
on separate hangers.
He uses hand cream.
I stole some. Just a bit. It smells sweet.
-The boy's a good worker.
-Good for him.
You must be glad to have some company.
Isn't it good for you?
I'm used to being on my own. I like it.
-If you were to leave…
-Mama, stop!
-Our finances…
-We can't afford the laser milker.
-We'll wait and see.
-Someday, we'll have to sell.
-We've been through all that.
I'm not quitting. I'll always be here.
You know that. Always.
I know that I should give you a hug now.
But I can't. I can't.
Then don't talk about it.
Tom! Tell me what you'd like to eat.
Something light, if possible?
And no chicken?
Whatever you want. I have a steak in
the freezer. I'll thaw you a steak that thick!
"If I don't see the marks on his hands, if I don't
put my finger in the wound, I will not believe…
Blessed are they who believe without seeing."
Good Heavens, mum.
Why don't you two go to the village?
Hang out at the square? Have a drink?
Then, you can take him down the country road.
Along the cypress grove.
My boys drove me there once.
We did a hundred and sixty.
The white lines became one streak,
we were going so fast. Like crazy.
-You loved it, didn't you?
-I stared death in the face. What's to love?
Go get dressed, mum, we're going out.
We'll get it up to 200.
Let Tommy have supper first.
So you check out your bum in the mirror?
-"Slut." I'll be calling you, "Slut"!
-Hello, what's this? So you're tough, eh?
-Hey, boys, not in the house.
-A tough guy, eh, slut? Well done.
-Not in the house. Go outside.
Look how handsome he is when he's mad.
You dragged me, tied by the wrists,
on my belly for two kilometres! Apologize!
-He bit me! He bit me, the goddamn fag!
-The what?
Manner of speaking. That's all
White teeth in rotting flesh! Cunt!
-Did you see that, Ma?
-I don't talk to boys who swear.
Get yourself over here.
I thawed some chicken soup.
Chicken soup chasing chicken. Nice.
-With butter.
-Yeah, butter is a must.
-Frangos, feed him.
-You're nuts, mum?
Behave yourself. Can't you see
that he can't hold his spoon?
Tell me now. Tell me more about her.
How did he rope her in? Was it easy?
He roped everybody in.
It wasn't hard for him.
-Did you hear that, Frangos? It was easy for him.
-I heard. Every word.
He was a brute with a rare appreciation
of poetry. That's what he was.
"A brute with a rare appreciation of poetry."
You should talk like our boy here.
-Are you sure you'd like that?
-Women like men who talk pretty.
I heard she was crazy
about pasta with plenty of cream.
Ravioli, tortellini, spaghetti, lasagne. You want
more? Smothered in sauce, you asshole.
So, you like it, too?
Do I like what?
Sure, I like pasta.
Anything else?
We should deal with it if so.
There must be someone special in your life?
You never talk about yourself.
Here? Now? Me? What about me?
I don't know what to say about me.
"Me? I don't know. What about me?"
You still want me to talk like him?
"Softer, puss, softer.
Raise your arms,
show me your armpits.
Then slide your hand down, lower.
Slowly. That's right."
-What's he talking about?
-How should I know, mum?
"Your hand on your belly."
We didn't even have his address,
and he talked to him about such things?
"Lie down on the bed."
-Now we're getting the lowdown?
-"Lick my cock."
She was a nasty bit of goods, eh, Tom?
One of many.
Yes, she was nasty!
-A real slut.
You bet.
Why don't I get out?
Why do I say, "Good morning, Good evening?"
and not, "Help, get me out of here!"?
Why don't I just tell her,
"I loved your son and your son loved me."
-It feels good to laugh like that
-You want to go for a ride in the car, mama?
Good night, Frangos.
Ok, ma, good night.
-Good night, my boy.
-Good night.
Frangos, cook his steak right for him.
Make sure it's well done, not all bloody.
If I don't do the chores,
she'll wear herself out later.
I help as much as I can,
while she's not around.
-You're good for her.
-I don't think so.
I haven't seen her laugh like that for ages.
D' you tell the doctor what I did to you?
I told him you drove me. That's all.
That's why he didn't ask any questions.
He asked me to pass on his condolences.
Shouldn't have brought you to a local med.
I should've driven you to the next village.
Is there really a "next village"?
How come you haven't asked
why I'm not married yet?
I've got everything to make a woman happy.
I work good and look good.
I know you like me.
I say yes, I get a beating.
I say no, I get a beating.
My brother never told you
the story of the kid in the bar?
What kid?
The kid I tore apart.
I tore him apart!
That's what they all said
and that's what I did.
There was no trial.
It was all settled in cash.
And then in silence.
I was sixteen. He was fourteen.
He was wearing white jeans,
a multicoloured T-shirt.
I put both of my hands in his mouth
and tore it open.
They didn't say, "beaten." They didn't say "hurt."
They said "torn apart".
My mother cried. My father said nothing.
Settled out of court, which was worse.
People still talk about it in the village.
A new story pops up here and there,
every now and then.
He left town.
They say the boy has a new nose. New lips.
He couldn't stand being
the torn apart monster with the fake nose.
All the broads around here are scared of me.
What mother would let her daughter
go out with the guy who tears faces apart?
We'd just started dating.
There was this very pretty girl.
I 'd bought her a pretty little silk top, real silk.
My little brother wanted me
to have a girlfriend.
We went to the local bar.
Around here, you start going to the bar
when you're twelve. The only place to hang out.
Α kid in white jeans and multicoloured T-shirt
pulls me aside, with a weird look in his eyes.
He says, "I gotta talk to you about
your brother. It's touchy."
My little brother was watching us,
I make the kid repeat slowly,
"Your little brother… it's touchy."
I realized where this was going.
I knew because of the drawings
and the poems under his bed.
But how could he know?
Did the rest of them know?
Should I let everyone laugh at us?
In a hick town anything gets around.
"Your little brother… it's touchy."
I saw red. I don't remember much.
Just my hands in his mouth. The sound
coming from deep down and breaking bones.
I never hung out since.
My brother saw me do it,
but I wouldn't tell him why.
He was ashamed of me. All he wanted was to leave.
We fought a great deal.
I hanged him over the cow ditch
once. Over the carcases.
He left anyway. He did it.
Mum altered them for you.
They should fit better now.
You can wear your cologne again
if you want.
Mum likes it.
Your cologne, I mean.
I don't know how to ask people to stay.
I can't find the right words.
Scene 6
We helped a cow give birth.
We delivered life.
What an experience! I want to run out
to the field yelling: "I delivered life!
"Hey, mutts, I delivered life."
I couldn't do much because of my hands,
but I watched Frangos do the hard part.
He put on some big rubber gloves
and stuck whole his arm inside the cow.
All the way to the cow's uterus,
to grab the calf's legs.
He tied a rope around them
and started pulling softly.
He pulled, let go, then pulled some more.
Every time the cow had a spasm, he pulled.
And I cheered him on.
Finally, the calf's head appeared.
I cried for joy.
That's when Frangos told me to shut up.
And went on pulling.
Then out came the body, almost in one go.
The calf fell right in front of me
and broke a leg.
A violent welcome into this world.
Then the mother licked the placenta
and the baby drank the colostrum.
Today's lesson. Frangos said
the word colostrum. First milk.
Then your mother thawed a cheese pie.
-We can call it "Slut."
-Wow! Heaven!
Sorry, I don't know what's come over me!
I can't help it. I'm sorry.
Tell me buddy, what good is your sperm?
Excuse me?
Your sperm. What good is it?
Fine. We've just changed the subject.
Why are you alive if you can't give life?
Hey, wait a minute.
I was just thinking about that.
Your sperm is absolutely useless, pointless.
That's one way of looking at it.
Your juice is useless.
My juice? Like jism? Why don't you leave
synonyms to the experts, Mr Frangos?
What part do you play?
What's the point of your life?
What's the point of tearing faces apart?
Come on, get up
Get up.
On your feet.
-Take off your T-shirt.
Raise your arms. Show me your armpits.
Your voice is his voice.
You can't spend your whole life without kids,
an old man all alone. Is that what you want?
-Your hands are his hands.
-I'm talking to you!
-Dark eyes like his.
-I'm talking to you.
-Same lips,
-I'm talking to you.
…let me check.
I'm talking to you.
To go back to him,
just to take a look.
I only care about myself, Frangos!
And besides,
producing "my juice" gives me real pleasure.
I enjoy the moment of juicing.
Let me show you something.
This was for the girl, my date.
The salesgirl told me it was real silk.
Just looking at it, I can tell it's real.
Coming from you, I believe it.
-It's beautiful.
-I never had a chance to give it to her.
What was her name?
I can't remember.
Real silk?
Twelve speakers,
a 12-CD continuous deck.
The Chinese thought
it was syrtaki and the like.
But it's hasapiko.
The cows love it, I bet.
They sure give more milk now.
Let me show you. You keep your body straight.
Come on, let's do it.
Stand straight. That's it!
Right, yeah. Forward. Like this.
Way to go! You're a fast learner.
-Not bad, eh?
My little brother must've taught you.
He promised he'd only practice with me.
You're not bad either.
You tell me when to stop! You decide.
Give me a signal and I'll stop. Say when.
Tell me!
Tell me when to stop.
You're tough, man.
Fuck, breathe!
Come on, breath!
Get up! Wake up!
You know I'm stuck here because
of my mother.
I could take off,
leave her here on her own,
but I won't think of it.
I don't know what I'll do
when she gets dotty.
She can still manage for now.
She's just a bit wacky
with this church stuff.
Another five years before
she gets out of hand. Five more years.
Milking the cows, feeding the dogs,
watching the corn grow:
five years, not a day more.
Sometimes I wish she'd get sick.
Something quick.
Where you find them on the kitchen floor,
phone in hand, mouth and eye wide open.
It would hurt like hell,
but at least I wouldn't have
to put her in a home far away.
Come eat now.
-You were here?
-You still haven't got rid of that rag?
She had a beautiful calf.
We baptized it "Slut".
What a name for a calf. Unheard of.
You heard what I was saying?
Come eat now. I thawed the cheese pie.
-Did you hear?
-Yes! I heard.
And I said, "Slut is no name for a calf!"
We're eating.
She heard everything. Fuck!
You haven't had enough yet?
Scene 7
In the pen.
Tom, wearing the red top, is hanging
upside down from a rope in semi-darkness.
I won't throw up. No way, I won't.
It's stinking shit. Cow manure.
His mother thinks we're having fun.
That we're hanging out with divorcees
and cougars with big hairdos.
It's just shit that stinks. I bet it hasn't
rained for weeks, I'm sure it's just shit.
Red shit. Intestines!
Offal! Guts!
Stomachs! Tripe! Innards!
I can't find the synonym for,
"Get me out of here, you asshole!"
This is a stinking nightmare.
I won't panic. I won't throw up.
I heard a wolf howl.
Frangos says wolves
don't attack humans first.
But I'm not a human. I'm a piece of meat.
A dainty dish.
They're moving down there, I know.
I know they're there.
Going to tell me when to stop?
Let me go, Frangos, let me go!
-A bit longer. You can do it.
-Let me go!
Scene 8
Whatever you want…
Yea, whatever you want…
No, I can't drive my car…
A bit of a problem with my hands…
I'm hurt.
Αnd one leg.
I told you. Out in the sticks.
-Did I wake you up?
-I was talking a bit loud.
-Not at all.
I used the phone.
No problem.
-I have no signal.
Don't worry. I'll pay you back.
I want to talk to her.
Is that her? Pass her to me.
Eleni? Helena?
Eleni, dear…
I know you can't understand
what I'm saying.
No… I don't speak German
I want to tell you that you are welcome.
She hung up.
-I talked to her. I can't believe it.
-Me neither.
"Two men in shining garments
"stood by the two women
and said unto them,
"Why seek ye the living among
the dead?'"
Amen, Agathi. Amen.
Where have you been?
-I was playing nurse.
-I went to help our calf.
-Tomorrow, I'm putting him down.
-No way!
-Wanna bet?
What I say goes. Get it into your head.
-I'm calling the vet tomorrow. I'll pay.
-Go to bed.
I carried him to his mother. He was thirsty.
I'm afraid she'll crush him.
Go to bed!
He still can't walk. It's fractured.
Go to bed!
Can I sleep with you?
You see the size of this bed?
You're not getting undressed.
-You smell like the barn.
-You smell of cologne!
-Just a drop.
Is there a wedding in the offing?
I found a bottle lying around.
You smell like your brother.
He couldn't even last a minute
over the cow ditch.
But you're really something.
You're a weird case, buddy.
-Her name was Katerina.
The silk top girl. My date. Katerina.
Tell me when to stop.
Scene 9
Sara is sitting opposite Agathi.
Excuse the mess.
I 've got my hands full.
We weren't ready for a funeral.
It was so sudden.
You must be knackered.
It's a long trip from the city by bus.
If I'd known you were coming,
I'd have fixed a pie.
You're very pretty.
I don't know why,
but I didn't scream when I saw you.
I should have. A woman walks into
her house and finds a stranger.
A strange woman who doesn't
understand a word you say.
Tom told us a bit about you…
Look at this.
-Incredible, eh?
-And Mary…
She came.
-And all the saints!
-Leave religion out of it.
This is Frangos, my elder son.
Frangos, this is Helena.
-What is she doing here?
-She was your brother's girlfriend!
Doesn't she understand what we're saying?
She hasn't smoked yet.
Maybe she's run out.
My little brother had good taste.
Go get Tom.
He's feeding the cows.
I'll go get him.
Thank you, thank you.
You're real hot!
The kid had taste. He picked a dish.
I don't know why you came,
but mother's happy you're here.
Just make sure she stays happy.
If you want her to stay happy, let go of me!
Why did you come?
Tom said it would make your mother happy.
That's Tom. He likes to make people happy.
He said I was to show up as Helene,
and not speak Greek.
He'd see to the rest.
And I agree, it's sick. Yeah.
You must owe him big time?
His boyfriend's just died.
It's compassion.
C'mon, how much?
A couple of thousand.
He said we could forget it.
You're a real hot babe.
Right, we've run through your compliments.
By the way, I don't smoke.
Yeah, it's cream.
We haven't had so many visitors for ages.
-But don't thaw stuff, mum. She's not staying.
She's going nowhere. She'll stay the night.
It's strange having you here without him.
-Tell her our boy had good taste.
-Come on!
-Can't I pay her a compliment?
She thanks you for the tribute, Frangos.
She didn't say a thing
and you're translating?
Tom, tell her I was very disappointed
that she didn't come to the funeral.
She couldn't come.
She didn't have the strength.
Too unhappy.
When you're too unhappy,
you keep it to yourself? Is this the new way?
What did she say?
She says she's sorry.
Is it true that he died on the spot?
Yes, he died instantly.
She said "taxi", I heard her. Taxi!
She rushed to the scene of the accident
by taxi.
You said she ran. You don't run in a taxi!
She found it very hard not to be able
to identify his body herself.
Ask her if she'd like something to drink.
She doesn't drink.
-But she wants a drink.
-I said she doesn't drink!
We can still show our Greek hospitality.
We'll have one drink, to his memory.
She thanks you.
I have some tsipouro in my room.
Frangos will get the best dishes.
They work all day.
From sunrise to sundown.
Even Sundays.
They go to church.
I'll soon introduce you to "Slut."
My calf.
He was named "Slut" in my honour.
He has the gentlest eyes in the world.
You don't know how hard Frangos
worked to bring him into this world.
The vet came to set his leg.
It happened at birth.
The cow was standing
and he fell to the ground.
I have to carry him to his mother
for every feeding. He's heavy.
At night, I have to set the alarm.
Frangos thinks I'm obsessed.
Go get your suitcase,
-We'll take your car. I'll drive.
-What for?
You're covered in bruises.
You can hardly move your hands.
You tell me about a calf all teary eyed.
You give me sour milk – yeah and cream,
grinning like an award winning farmer.
And, for god's sake! You called her "mum".
To make her happy.
You don't call someone "mum"
to make her happy.
Getting off the bus and into the taxi,
I heard myself say,
"At the turn of the road,
the only house with lights on…"
and I thought: "In your project, am I the dumb
broad who gets her head chopped off?"
What have they done to you?
If I leave, Frangos will have
to sell farm and livestock.
You've got no idea,
forty-eight cows is a lot of work.
He'll have to put his mother in a home
because of her crazy gospel stories.
He's all alone
because he tore someone's face apart.
There was this one girl
he wanted to give a present to. He never did.
I'm thinking of buying
a laser milking machine.
I'm not your friend.
We're so close, they're like family to me.
You don't even know these people!
I don't know how to explain it.
Things are real around here.
There's a dog that barks and you can hear it.
There's a priest who talks and you believe.
There's a calf that's born and there's blood.
…and you talk to me about real?
Fine. Listen up.
Your boyfriend lied to his mother.
That's real.
Your boyfriend lied to you. That's real.
Your boyfriend always lied to everyone.
Some people spend their lives
trying to achieve a fraction
of your boyfriend's talent
for transforming truth.
We fucked. No big deal.
No big deal, because your boyfriend
made a pass at everything that moved.
If he gave you a lift, that was the deal.
On his bike in the summer,
in his car in the winter.
Sleeping with him
was like going across the street.
Guys and girls. Yes, girls, too, Tom.
Because sometimes your boyfriend
managed to lie even to himself.
That was his legacy to you, his talent.
What he knew how to do best!
To lie to himself
How many times? How many times?
How many times?
-With you?
Here are our best dishes.
We have to take her to the bus station.
The station?
She just got here.
Better not miss the right lane!
The station!
The station's a rotten sign
by the tavern.
Keep your voice down.
I'm not going to spend three hours
standing under a battered sign in this dump.
And all because of…
"Frangos! Frangos! Frangos!"
What did he tell you?
What did you tell her? Eh? What?
Let go of him! You beat him to a pulp
and he's still here. What's to tell?
I told you to speak German. Fuck!
Who's swearing in my house?
We'll tell my mother she wants to go to
the grave, and we'll take her to the bus.
-Hey! Where am I going?
-To the cemetery.
To the cemetery or straight to the cow ditch?
And you can count on him,
he knows the way.
One carcass more or less,
no one will ever notice.
Wow! Now, you're talking.
What are you talking about?
She was talking about the flower pots.
She likes your flowers.
No, Helena, there are no shoes in here.
His first report card. His first grown-up
watch. A man's watch with a bracelet.
And his notebooks. I think
they're his drawings and personal diaries.
-He didn't take them with him?
-No. He left them here.
You never read them?
I figure, if my sons have something
to tell me, let them tell me.
If they have secrets to keep,
let them keep them.
But if their secrets make them lie,
they're not my sons.
-Would you like to have a look, Tom?
-Let's read something. For beautiful Helen.
-She doesn't understand.
Just to hear his voice for the last time.
Now we're all together.
That's not a good idea, Mum.
Tom, do you agree that it's not a good idea?
I don't have the heart.
There's his first tie.
A lock of his hair. He had long hair when
he was eighteen. Beautiful.
You're not translating, Tom
It's for you, Helena. It's rightfully yours.
You’re not translating, Tom?
Why isn't she taking the box?
Why isn't she doing any of the right things?
Why didn't she come to the funeral?
Why doesn't she ever look moved?
Why did she come in these clothes?
No mourning?
Why hasn't she asked to go to the cemetery?
And no flowers? What am I missing?
Why didn't Tom speak at the church?
What's all this about?
Why? Who was my son? What was he?
He never came to see us anymore.
What did we do to him?
He never called. He never wrote. Why?
What happened? Why the accident?
Who dies at thirty five?
-Why do I feel useless? Useless.
-Stop it, Mum!
I feel like Helena never existed.
-Let's go get some cigarettes!
-I don't smoke!
Mrs Agathi, I've quit.
Scene 10
The sound of rain.
The sound of rain.
Frangos is screwing her.
Fucking her.
Drilling her.
Banging her.
Sucking her.
Plowing her. Tearing her apart.
Wetting her.
Spraying her.
37 minutes.
37 minutes and then some.
Because you never know exactly
when it's over.
With cum? With the last kiss?
When one of them starts talking
about family?
I started counting after the first moan.
It stinks of gas and I feel a shovel.
I'm cold.
Scene 11
At the graveyard.
They can't even level the ground right.
Get a shovel, we'll fix it up.
I thought we came for you to pray.
I didn't think we'd be ploughing.
Just like me, yesterday. I didn't expect people
to play games behind my back.
Go get the shovel. There's one in the trunk.
-How do you know?
-There's always a shovel in your trunk.
What about Tom?
What's the matter?
The cat's got your tongue?
I drank too much.
I fell asleep. I forgot him.
I'm not asking why you forgot him.
I'm asking why he's tied up?
We were playing. A game.
Let him loose and bring the shovel.
I want a few words with him.
You're mad at me, eh?
I've had three men in my life,
and I'm left with the worst.
You don't have to wait till you find me dead
on the kitchen floor to get rid of me.
You don't have to. You can leave
when you want.
You're free, Frangos.
Leave today if you want.
I'd rather become a wacky old lady
than one who's lied to. Bad son!
You know I'll always be there for you.
I read your brother's notebooks.
You shouldn't have read that!
He put them on my bed the day he left.
I knew he'd left them there for me
to read. I chose not to.
If my son can't tell me things to my face,
let him keep it to himself.
If my son leaves without saying why,
I don't want to find out in some notebooks.
The stories I told myself
so I wouldn't open them…
Last night, I read them like you read
the scriptures looking for the truth.
First notebook:
Not in the woods. Dangerous.
No pastel sweaters. Dangerous.
One chain around your neck. Not two.
No looking at buttocks in the showers.
Swear. Smoke. Fight.
A guy laughs at you. Hit him.
Beer. Not wine.
Two seconds in the eye. Not three.
Get a girl. Go hunting. Eat meat.
Parking area: a trap. The gym teacher's
basement: a trap.
You shouldn't have read them.
Second notebook: Swim in the stream
till the current takes us away.
Stare at the sun till our eyes burn.
Walk on ice till it cracks
beneath our steps.
We meet at the far end of the field.
I love you, Paul.
What was the name of the kid
whose face you tore apart?
Last notebook: Tonight at the bar, the brother
I love more than anything in this world,
tore apart Paul's face before my very eyes.
Paul, the boy I love more
than anything in this world.
Paul, who tried to talk about us
to the brother I loved more than anything.
He told me, "I have to talk to you
about your brother.
"It's touchy.
"We're really in love.
"It's touchy."
He tore Paul's beautiful face apart.
I saw the whole thing.
I didn't lift a finger.
I could see he was in agony,
I could hear him howling. I didn't do a thing.
We should never tell the truth. Never.
If I hadn't shut Paul up, someday, someone
would've shut your little boy up for good!
You can do that stuff in the city, but not here.
Let's keep the little we've got left here clean!
Untie Tom.
"He entered the house.
No one recognized him.
"He sat down at our table.
No one recognized him.
"He spoke to us of love.
No one recognized him,
"and those who were mourning him
went to his grave, but it was empty."
He's not here anymore.
Scene 12
Ιn the corn field. Assumption.
Εven the Gods have deserted him.
A stifled cry. That was cowardly.
He looks just like you.
The sun glows with hope.
You're strong, man. Strong!
I strike again.
The sun is burning.
"Tell me when to stop, buddy."

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