How else to resist?1


On Pathompon Mont Tesprateep’s Song X
By Elizabeth Gabrielle Lee



A message in a bottle is carried by a stream, forever journeying. But here, Song X isn’t the message, but a sand-crusted bottle, dusted with black and white 16mm grain. It takes on the role of a gracious usher, carrying the viewer through scenes of crackling flames, river water dousing, horses mating. There is nothing to be found at the end of the odyssey, but only to wake from a dream. Pathompon Mont Tesprateep’s piece is an attempt of closing up the time-space gap with a departed friend. Following a dead soldier’s journey in the pastoral landscapes of Central Thailand, the film is an encounter of a non place, suspended between the states of vigil and eternal slumber.



วางดอกไม้บานสะพรั้ง
หอมอุ่นละมุน
แสงสาดพริ้วเล็มใบหญ้า
ไม่ช้าก็คงงดงาม

หากใครรู้บ่วงสายใย
ผูกพันสับสน
จะล้มตัวนอน
ถอดถอนปล่อยกายตามฝัน

วางโกรธลดตามลำดับ
โล่งโปร่ง สบาย
วิ้วหรีดร้อยพวงประดับ
แถมผ้าปิดบังร่างกาย

แก้มที่เคยฉีกยิ้ม
สตางค์ที่เคยเก็บไว้
สุดท้ายไม่มีประโยชน์อันใด
จะฝืน

Lay the flowers in full bloom,
gently embalming.
Blades of grass basked in light,
not long till they spring.
Who knew of kinship
That twists and binds.
Lie down to sleep
and let the body dream.
Lay anger to rest,
to unburden.
A scene of garlands
shrouding the body away.
Cheeks splintered by a smile;
coins collected over time;
rendered worthless in the end
to resist.

The Last Village
by Wanarat Chiyapan, 2004. Translated by Palin Ansusinha.


Speechless, the moving image is a sonic reverberation of the Thai jungles and watering holes. Dialogue takes a back seat, in the driverless vehicle cruising on auto-pilot. Amidst the raging cicadas and windswept trees, the vacuum of silence emerges emboldened. In the face of logic, most often displayed in the systemic West, silence is refused as weakness. An absence of words coupled with an inability (or refusal) to speak denies bodies from crooning themselves into being. How else can we resist the impulse of speech, a punctuator of place? How else, can we resist hasty chatter for other sounds to hum through?



วางดอกไม้บานสะพรั้ง
หอมอุ่นละมุน
แสงสาดพริ้วเล็มใบหญ้า
ไม่ช้าก็คงงดงาม

หากใครรู้บ่วงสายใย
ผูกพันสับสน
จะล้มตัวนอน
ถอดถอนปล่อยกายตามฝัน

วางโกรธลดตามลำดับ
โล่งโปร่ง สบาย
วิ้วหรีดร้อยพวงประดับ
แถมผ้าปิดบังร่างกาย

แก้มที่เคยฉีกยิ้ม
สตางค์ที่เคยเก็บไว้
สุดท้ายไม่มีประโยชน์อันใด
จะฝืน

A song awakening the dead,
forever rousing.
Consoling voices in the wind
and water washes the body rising.
Innocence reflected
in quivering eyes
lead to a defunct destination
of ghostly fantasies.
A song for wayward dances,
frenzied, flickering.
Inflamed noises, flames that dart
and surge through bodies colliding.
The light bends and distorts
forgotten memory
seeking for release—
how else to resist?

Song X (The Last Village’s extended version) by Pathompon Mont Tesprateep, 2016. Translated by Palin Ansusinha.


Though it is an attempt to pick up the trails of his bandmate’s unfinished song, Song X is a refusal of completion, marinating in the bitter sweet of the liminal. It shuns linguistic absolution and prescriptivist articulation, opting to dwell in the lesser realm instead. Should Song X take on likeness of a punctuation, may it be a semicolon, drifting between a definite full stop and a hanging comma. A quiet interlude;



Directed by Pathompon Mont Tesprateep
Produced by Nuttaphan Yamkhaekhai
Co-producer: Danaya Chulphuthiphong
Assistant Director: Suphisara Kittikunarak
Cinematographer: Chukiat Wongsuwan
Art Director: Sorawat Mongkoljuntramaytee
Videographer: Danaya Chulphuthiphong
Still Photographers: Withit Chanthamarit,
Danaya Chulphuthiphong
Editor: Pathompon Mont Tesprateep
Sound: Chalermrat Kaweewattana
Film Processing: Rolling Wild

Pathompon Mont Tesprateep 
Song X
2017
16mm & Super 8
Black and White
No dialogue
20’19
































































2. Lynne Isbell, The Fruit, the Tree, and the Serpent, (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press), 2009, p. 95.







































3. Michel de Certeau, The Mystic Fable, Volume One: The Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries, trans. Michael B. Smith (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press) 1995, p. 196–97