Pink Floyd’s David Gilmour was suffering from severe writer’s block on account of a recurring nightmare, from which he would start awake each night consumed by an overwhelming sense of betrayal. His sleep patterns were shattered, and the dulled capacity of his sleep-deprived brain left him devoid of inspiration for new songs.
Upon finally seeking professional help, his psychotherapist suggested that some forgotten trauma from David’s childhood was coming to the surface, and suggested the use of hypnotherapy to try to discover what this was. David agreed, and so they embarked together upon a journey into his past. In each weekly session, Dr Sturges would put David into a hypnotic state, place a pen and pad in his hands, and take his mind back to ever-younger days, in search of the moment of betrayal which was now having such a profound effect.
Many weeks went by to no avail, until one day David seemed different. “How do you feel?” asked Sturges. “Excited” replied David. “Why is that?” asked the doctor. “Because I’m going to meet a real live fairy!” responded David, his usually calm hypnotic demeanour giving way to a more animated state as he relived the moment from his past. “My front tooth fell out” he continued, “and the Tooth Fairy is going to visit me tonight to take my tooth, and give me money!” He paused and his eyes flickered momentarily side to side, before adding in a whisper “but I’m not going to fall asleep… I’m going to stay awake all night and be the first one of all my friends to meet the Tooth Fairy in person!”
A moment more passed and then he whispered “Ssshhhh… I have to be quiet now.”
“Use your pad and pen” said Doctor Sturges, and he moved to see what David would write. The written words came out sporadically and less-coherently than the spoken words had done, but still gave a sense of what was happening in his mind.
… Yawn tired yawn
… How much long
… Awake still
… Tooth pillow there
… Fairy fly wing?
… Noise door handle
… Eyes close quiet quiet
… Footsteps room
… Pillow moving
… Look Now!
There was a pause, and then David’s face changed. His eyes were suddenly wide open, but not seeing Dr Sturges, and his look of excitement had turned to one of shock. His pen hand moved suddenly, flickering one final line across the pad before he jerked awake with a start, his face panicked and confused as he looked around the doctor’s office, clearly unaware of what had just taken place, but feeling the same sense of betrayal that had haunted him for so long.
Slowly he looked down at his pad, where he had written the words:
Earning Tooth Lie.