Is your name a pretence?

By you, but who are you?

You are, aren’t you?

A distinctive scowl and careless attitude.

That is in you.

Your song.

Why is your name so different?

Have you had enough of being yourself,

That you had to pretend?

Am I wrong?

Have I mistaken your character by appearances?

When I saw you as you are it was for the first time

Then I had enough already.

You call yourself 1980, but by many other names.

You are known as more and this we know well, so well, by your

Distinctive scowl and careless attitude

This blew me. 1980 is just a name, isn’t it?

You were more than


More than a scowl

More than careless

More than an attitude

For underneath,

You were saying,

“I come as a whist,

But also.”

I was never the same again.

Arid looking?

Photo by Anne McCarthy on

The book Meetings with Remarkable Men was a record of travels, published in English in 1963. The author G.I. Gurdjieff was born in Alexandropol in the then Russian Empire. His father was Greek and his mother Armenian. The diverse place he lived in caused him to go wandering to find inner meaning and the hidden realities behind life, who seemed misguided in his answers. What is stunning in the film version, no joke, is the desert, even as desert is unlikely to be described as stunning, even as filmed in the arid, dry regions of rock, cavern, and craggy outdoors. Perhaps eye catching is the better word. What the desert did for me is located in my brain, as well as my eye. I sensed the search can feel like walking through a desert while seeking the oasis and the indoor scenes involved in-depth conversations that reveal the real desires behind the search, a stunning discourse in itself. I do not know if the book gave off such an atmosphere in reading it, but the film adaptation certainly gives off that effect.

Searching is evident right from the start of the film, as a young Gurdijieff (played by Mikica Dimitrijevic) is intently watching a ceremony in a valley that involves traditional musical instruments played by the local people who seem to be going through a ritual of a sort, as if the boy is looking because he needs to understand. At that point, the young Gurdijieff is taken by the hand and guided by an elder towards an unseen place, followed by separate scenes of obscure rituals and philosophical chatter with his elders, father, and peers. As his curiosity grows even more, the older Gurdijieff (Dragan Maksimovic) encounters Prince Lubovedsky (Terrence Stamp) who influences him on his journey in a brotherly way to discover truth. Gurdijieff eventually believes the answer he is looking is at the mysterious Sarmoung Brotherhood, perhaps this was a sect or a cult. He is accompanied by others on his journey, in some way, be that other curious seekers or those who believe in the cause. The final scenes are a tad uncomfortable because of their proximity to cult-like places, and the content of Gurdijieff’s ideas are unconvincing, but I found I connected with the journeying, and its arrival moved me, while my thoughts center on compassion for Gurdijieff who seemed misguided in his answers.

Goes around

My experience, but with a keen eye on what’s happening elsewhere. This picture makes a story…a story which is mine, which may be yours, maybe our lines meet, maybe they diverge. Maybe we will meet again some other way. Maybe the story will go around.


Bringing together two facts can create an interesting point of view on it. Somebody’s judgements in the negative (first fact), while several advisors concur (second fact), causing the ever decreasing circles of control on a poor, talented life (point of view), the claws grip tighter…as one scene builds on another.