The visit forward

Tuesday, 1 February 2005

EXT, MURKY DAYLIGHT, ENDLESS CONCRETE PLANE, LONG SHOT. Catapulted SEVERAL HUNDRED YEARS INTO THE FUTURE our hero JASPER, white, mid 30s, clean cut, finds himself standing before a colossal, pyramid-shaped MONUMENT 150 meters high. It is the green patina of long weathered copper rich bronze.

Pavement — somehow translucent, showing motion? movement? traffic? beneath — stretches to the horizon on the three visible cardinal points. JASPER can’t see past the MONUMENT. It could the only feature of all the known world.

MEDIUM SHOT Stepping forward on the slightly springy, iridescent concrete? to put a palm on the immovable, cold metal, JASPER can see the MONUMENT’s pattern. The motif resolves itself into 1/4 scale skulls; stacked at 43° to the greening sky.

A MAN, 20ish, looks Finnish, dressed in the monochromatic clothes of a retiree, is somehow disgorged by the pavement, a few feet from JASPER. He steps forward and throws a handful of something semi-visible, glitter-like at the MONUMENT. It makes no sound as it disappears into the metal.

JASPER

Excuse me. What is this?

MAN

(Has gentle accent, vaguely Canadian and Hindu at the same time)

Grain Flats.

JASPER

What?

MAN

What?

JASPER

(Points to the MONUMENT)

MAN

Put when the bounce. Finally.

JASPER

(Shakes his head in confusion)

MAN

After the war.

JASPER

This is a war monument?

MAN

Yeah, no? You okay?

JASPER

What does it mean? The skulls?

MAN

Well, they just guessing. No one’s an idea how many really to the Z.

JASPER

What…? This is meant to be an accurate representation of how many died?

MAN

(Shrugs)

JASPER

Which war was it?

MAN

World War M.

JASPER

An alphabetic designation. I don’t… Unbelievable.

MAN

What “alphabetic designation?”

JASPER

You know. A, B, C. To M. What does that make it? 13? My God.

MAN

Nothing about the alphabet. It’s Roman numeral.

CUT TO WHITE. WISH IT AWAY. BELIEVE IT’S EVEN POSSIBLE IT MIGHT GO.

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