Tuesday, September 7, 2010

worshipful movements of humans through space, part 5: short silent film of a muslim man praying

Photo: Muslim Man Praying
Public Domain

A black-and-white man stands with his hands behind his ears. His thumbs are placed behind his earlobes and his fingers are splayed open like collecting horns receiving an invisible broadcast. His mouth moves as he speaks but only the sound of the projector clacking can be heard.

The man folds his hands one over the other in front of him and they hang down as loosely as the emotion he wears on his brow. Except for his lips he is still. His lips are still moving when he bends forward at the waist and cups his knees with his open palms. His back is flat enough to set a table upon. Rising from this position, it is clear even to a novice lip-reader that his lips are making m sounds.

He goes down slowly onto his knees and, curling his back, places his palms on the small carpet. He points the tip of his head toward the floor and touches it also to the carpet. An illuminated fiber appears on the screen and is eventually dislodged. He sits back on his heels for a moment, his hands held lightly on his lap, then points and places again his hands and his head on the carpet. Rising from this position, his lips make more m sounds. The face of the man appears satisfied. The loose end of the filmstrip slaps the rolling of the reel and the screen becomes jarringly white.