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Monday, 3 October 2016

I Saw A Man Who Wasn’t There!

    On the day of his arrival in The Village, the Prisoner takes his first tentative steps outside his Cottage. Looking up at the Bell Tower he sees a man leaning out of a window looking down at him. The Prisoner rushes round to the door of the Bell Tower and rushes up the steps. But the man isn’t there, instead the Prisoner comes face to face with a statue of a woman. I cannot believe the statue was hauled up to the top of the Bell Tower simply for the benefit of the Prisoner, but if it was, perhaps the man leaning out of the window was one of the men who hauled the statue up there!
   It puts me in mind of the poem by William Hughes Mearns 1899.

    “Yesterday, upon the stair,
I met a man who wasn't there.
He wasn't there again today,
I wish, I wish he'd go away...

When I came home last night at three,
The man was waiting there for me
But when I looked around the hall,
I couldn't see him there at all!
Go away, go away, don't you come back any more!
Go away, go away, and please don't slam the door...

Last night I saw upon the stair,
A little man who wasn't there,
He wasn't there again today
Oh, how I wish he'd go away...”

   Like in the poem the man in the Bell Tower wasn’t there at all! If he was, where did he come from, where did he go!
   A parallel can be drawn between the man in the
Bell Tower and the housemaid standing on the balcony of ‘6 Private’ flicking a yellow duster. Having attempted to buy a map of the area, the Prisoner leaves the General Store, and sees said housemaid standing on the balcony of his cottage flicking a yellow duster. He rushes round to the door of his cottage, but by the time he gets inside, the housemaid is no longer there, but fleeing down a set of steps! But what made the housemaid run away in the first place, didn’t she want to be caught there by the new occupant? And why was she there in the first place? The cottage’s interior hardly looked like it needed dusting. But then if she hadn’t been there in the first place, she couldn’t have left her duster and so had to go back for it later, when she tried to lean on the Prisoner’s sympathy in attempting to extract some sort of information from him!

Be seeing you

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