William D. Waltz

from The Long, Strange Trip from Alaska to the Planet of the Apes and Beyond

After three weeks in our time-space capsule, we crossed the intracoastal waterway and arrived in sunny Miami Beach whose swaying palm trees proffered evidence, for a child of Alaska, of a living dreamscape. My second outing to the movies occurred later that year, amid the swamp and sand of Florida, when my father took me to see *Planet of the Apes*. I'll never forget that image of the Statue of Liberty waist deep in mud, or those soot-faced chimney sweeps dancing upon the roofs of London...or that long, strange trip with my family. Better movies have been made but those first two put forward both the magic and the promise of film, which, at its best, is a kind of poetry, using not so much words, but all manner of sight, sound, and story, the language of cinema. Poetry too gives us moving images, startling images, images that somehow swell with meaning and become symbols for our mythologies.