And now it’s David on stage.  No guitar.  No music.  Just his words.  His face and body saying them.  And he speaks like he knows he’s a dream.  A friend’s dream.  Part of a mind unraveling what just happened.  How a man loved a girl, the daughter of a powerful man, but couldn’t trust her.  And then she was murdered.  This after an accident where they all nearly died.  David is a friend who can look at it on the outside.  A witness.  And for a moment you see a snapshot.  A mug shot.  David in profile next to lines that measure height.  His arrest photo.  Black and white.  Holding his number.  The word Mississippi put into focus.  White magnetic letters on a black board.

DAVID

He loved a girl.  Just like I loved a girl.  That same old plot.  What storytellers make of their work.  Heroes and villains.  Predictions based on the past.  All of it practical—simple.  Harness your resources.  Rest when you can.  And be willing to lose.  Because you think I haven’t lost before?  Take a big whiff.  Feel the pressure.  When it all comes weighing down.  What you’ve said before.  What you’ve done before.  The reactions to this.  And then what other people say.  What other people do.  Complicated, but ultimately deceptively simple.  Because what is great?  How do you recognize great things?  Great people?  These are things judged long after.  Long after they happen.  For while they happen so many other things are going on—filtered stupidity.  The mundane.  The mechanisms…  You do not know how you learn what you learn.  The curriculum designed so you don’t ever ask this.  What you read the comfort of everyone else sharing the same reality—a reality where you don’t even have to finish your next sentence because someone else can do it for you—they too on the same page.  Sharing the same drudgery.  The same laughter.  And so now I’ll finish it for him.  I will finish his dream.  A dream where he shared the same breath as great men.  A dream where he took the cards that they denied—and won.  Because Johnny was a winner.  He loved a girl.  Just like I loved a girl.  And what he lost was not in her death.  Her murder—this not his fault.  This the fault that gives the perception of losing, when you feel it.  No, that was her father.  In days of ugliness and repressed civilization—when you’re alone in your and everyone else’s guilt…  No, what he lost was the meaning of loss.  This is what time in Mississippi does to you.  Because the world is loud.  This earth is loud.  And only in silence is what is great recognized.  The movement continued.  The revolution.  The turning of the wheel…

EXT. PETROGRAD STREETS—DAY OCT 1917

A riot.  Men and women.  Even children.  Filling the street.  The sidewalk.  You see their faces.  You move from one to the next.  Angry.  Scared.  Confused.  And as you see each face you see their story.  You see where they work.  Where they live.  Farmers.  Factory workers.  Some thresh wheat.  Some repair shoes.  You see the women in kitchens.  The children at play.  And each time you see their story—their work, their home—a picture of Antonin Popovitch.  A Cossack guard at the WinterPalace door.  A finger to his lips.  And in between you see the Biloxi Light, different snapshots of Nina’s naked and dead body.  Her feet.  Her eyes.  And what they see…

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