In this film with Christopher Plummer, his son makes a book
called The History of Sadness. Mother, when I say the history
of sadness, I mean the day I was born. Tomorrow in Australia
and Japan, I will turn twenty years old, and I have been kissed
by two boys and three girls. When I say the history of sadness,
I mean these stones you like to place on top of my chest. In this
play by Arthur Miller, this one character named Giles Corey is
pressed to death on page 117. The townspeople think he’s a witch,
or hiding a witch, or in love with a witch, so they put this board
of wood across his chest and cover that, one by one, with heavy
rocks, until the weight cracks his ribcage and those broken bones
puncture his lungs. Mother, when I say the history of sadness, I
mean the light Giles Corey must’ve seen—the light says, You’re
stunning; you glimmer with the orbits of the planets and the future
of the living—when he runs out of air. Before he stops breathing.
Mother, I mean suffocating. Mother, the light. I mean the light.