Heads

I’ve been thinking a lot about heads recently. My own, and other peoples. It started at the theatre. I was watching Hamlet at the Young Vic, which is very good indeed, but also very long. Embarrassingly, at interval I turned to my Father and said loudly, ‘How can that be it? Orphelia hasn’t drowned. No-one has died. This is the oddest production of Hamlet I’ve ever seen.’ ‘You know it’s just the interval?’ my Father asked kindly. ‘Yes, of course,’ I recovered quickly. ‘I just thought Orphelia had drowned by now. Um, ice-cream?’ I don’t think my Father was fooled, but he politely went to the bar.

I settled back into my seat, and figured that since I was apparently there for the rest of my natural life, I ought to get comfortable. I leant back casually, and nestled my head against the softness behind me. Which a few seconds later, disconcertingly moved. It seems I had made another miscalculation. I comforted myself with the still blissful memory of the time my Mother, leaving a cinema, put her hand on a bald man’s head.

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