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S C E N A : T h e a t r e ..A r t s ..R e v i e w
Novi Sad, 2006/2007 . ..No. 20 . .January-December . .YU ISSN 0036-5743 .

d r a m a
MILENA MARKOVIC
THE DOLL SHIP - A Prime Time Drama
Translated by Goran MIMICA and Therese DAVIES

 

MILENA MARKOVIC
Milena Markovic, playwright, poet, and screenwriter was born in Zemun, on April 9, 1974. In June 1998, she graduated from the Faculty of Dramatic Arts having presented her drama titled Pavilions, or Where I Am Going, Where I Come from and What’s for Dinner. In December 2001 she won the Special Prize for the drama Pavilions at the MBH Vienna Theatre.In April 2001 Pavilions premiered at the Yugoslav Drama Theatre in Belgrade, directed by Alisa Stojanovic and, the same year, at the National Theatre in Skoplje, directed by Srdjan Janicijevic. In October 2002, at the Vienna Theatre, the same drama premiered, directed by Zijah Sokolovic. The anthology of poems titled The Dog That Ate the Sun was published by Flavio Rigonat, in Belgrade, in April 2001. The anthology came out in three editions.
Her second play God Had Mercy on Us - Tracks which earned her a Royal Court Summer Residency for Emerging Playwrights in London, was also published in „Theater Heute”, and staged in Poland and Germany.
The opening night of Tracks was in Belgrade, in November 2002, at the Yugoslav Drama Theatre, directed by Slobodan Unkovski. In June 2004 the drama Tracks was awarded a Special Prize at the Sterijino pozorje festival. In late June, 2004, the Yugoslav Drama Theatre took part in the Festival of Modern Dance in Wiesbaden with the play Tracks, whose text was published in "Theater Heute" the same year. In September 2004, Milena Markovic participated in the project "SWITCH", the exchange between the Nordic and Balkan countries, with the reading of her poetry in Stockholm and Göteborg. From December 2004 to January 2005, she wrote a screenplay for the short documentary film The Miners' Opera, in the Serbian town of Bor, directed by Oleg Novkovic. February 11, 2005 saw the opening of her new drama The Wood Glitters at the Schauspielhaus theatre in Zurich.
In October 2005, she won the "Borislav Mihajlovic Mihiz" prize for her plays. Her drama The Doll Ship  had its world premiere in June 2006 at the Yugoslav Drama Theatre in Belgrade, directed by Slobodan Unkovski, and her latest play Simeon the Foundling had its opening night in May 2006, at the Serbian National Theatre in Novi Sad, directed by Tomi Janezic.
She wrote the screenplay for the film Tomorrow Morning directed by Oleg Novkovic.

Translated by Gordana KAMENAROVIC


Dramaturg’s Note

THE POWER OF POETIC TRUTH
About the drama The Doll Ship by Milena Markovic

The dramatic structure of Milena Markovic's texts appears more intensive from play to play, corresponding with the sensibility of her poetry (the collections of poems The Dog That Ate the Sun, The Truth in Heat, and The Black Spoon). Even her early plays (Pavilions, or Where I Am Going, Where I Come from and What’s for Dinner; or God Had Mercy on Us - Tracks), to say the truth, had a strong poetic charge. Both are characterized by the author's ability to create a significantly poetic atmosphere additionally enforcing the impression of cruelty of the world she wrote about.
However, in her latest dramatic opus: White, White World, The Doll Ship, and Simeon the Foundling, what at first appeared as extrinsic, as being imported into drama from the sphere of poetry, now ever more clearly establishes itself as an authentic poetic principle, a specific literary procédé to which the form of poetic drama no longer serves as an alibi or immediate association.
Nevertheless, the trail that starts in her poems can lead us, but only to a certain extent, towards an understanding of this author’s dramatic method. Namely, on the one side there are the unusually constructed lines corresponding to the apparent roughness and rawness of her verses, as if they were exact replicas of everyday talk, just like her (quasi)Brechtian usage of songs, while on the other side is the author’s ability to authentically destroy from the inside and modify again the particular elements of reality (sometimes taken over from so-called life, in this case based on the commonplaces from fairy tales).
In the case of The Doll Ship, a specific collision occurs between the archetypical model of the intricate world of fairy tales, and the bare essence of a reality we know all too well – a reality freed from crumbling crusts that give an educational purpose to fairy tales as reading material.
The result offered by Milena Markovic is the truth, and a painfully frightening one at that. We can agree with it but we don’t have to, yet it is powerful, provocative, and convincing, and on stage potentially strong in a way that is understood in the kind of theatre in which everything becomes possible. In this drama we can recognize what we all (consciously, or more often – unconsciously) search for; we can get entangled into the obscure depths of psychoanalytic groundwater, we can get amused by the Jungian distinction of the opposite side of the archetypical, we can read interpretations in the path of new European drama into its scenes, but those interpretations will surely chip off the poetic power of this drama – as always happens when trying to interpret good poetry.
"This is not a world for children. I don’t want children", says Hunter, a dramatis persona from Milena’s drama The Doll Ship; but this statement here does not function as a banal - today even pathetic, largely worn-out slogan ever since Hamlet’s advice to Ophelia – as a manifest stated by one of the conscious representatives of an unconscious world. For, just a few lines later, the same Hunter will say this as well: “I don’t care. I don’t care to be sixty and have a ten-year-old, I don’t care about kids at all, I couldn’t care less about this one of mine until I’m able to sit and talk with him”.
And that, in fact, is the knot. It is just there – in conversation – where the real trouble and real pain begin. No matter how crudely open and cruelly sincere it was, no matter what language was used, it repeatedly reveals the old secrets of the world, those that the author, in a seemingly innocent, yet in fact frightening way, sublimates in every song of the drama.
And because of all that, The Doll Ship carriesa hidden (poisonous) rhythm of energy characteristic to the perception of the world immanent to the authentic and darkest romanticism, a weltanschauung that gave up on diagnosing the state of matter in this world, which is not amazed by anything, or disgusted over reality, does not bother enjoying its own (fruitless) irony, and at the same time does not give up the right to talk loudly, to tell (its own) the truth. It does not waive its right to rebel. Punk!

Aleksandar MILOSAVLJEVIC
Translated by Gordana KAMENAROVIC


Characters:

LITTLE SISTER
ALICE
SNOW WHITE
GOLDILOCKS
THUMBELINA
PRINCESS
WOMAN
WITCH
The same actress plays all parts except the witch, who is played by an older woman.
MOTHER
(of WOMAN)
BIG SISTER
(of WOMAN)
PAPA BEAR
MAMA BEAR
BABY BEAR, a nice kid and the father of the WOMAN’S child

EAGLE
(of WOMAN) he is also
EAGLET

DWARVES
CHOIR
DOC
DOPEY
GRUMPY
A band of villains, orphans, drug addicts, sinners, proletarians.

FROG
Famous artist
HUNTER
Patron
Could be played by one actor.

HANSEL
GRETEL
Young fans

Live music. Accordion and drums, guitar, flute.


SCENE ONE
SHACK

Mother, little sister and big sister.
Children’s room, bunk beds.
Next to the bed there is a curtain dividing the mother and father from the children. Mother’s head is turned, the girls can not be seen, only voices are heard. The adults’ shadows can be seen on the curtain. In their hands they are holding bags, knives, pigs’ heads, pitchforks...

LITTLE SISTER: Why can’t we come in?
MAMA: It’s not time yet.
BIG SISTER: When’s it going to be the right time?
MAMA: There are beasts in that room...
LITTLE SISTER: What beasts?

MAMA: One says now
the second says no
the third stares at you and grins
the fourth is sitting and eating moving flesh
but its eyes are kind
the fifth says do it do it
nothing will happen to you
the sixth has no eyes
the seventh no ears
the eighth no mouth
the ninth is memory
the tenth is death
BIG SISTER: I don’t understand.
MAMA: You don’t need to understand, you need to sleep.
LITTLE SISTER: Where are you going?
MAMA: I’m going to work.
LITTLE SISTER: What are you going to do now, mum?
MAMA: I’m going to check the kids’ homework, I teach them.
LITTLE SISTER: Were the children good?
MAMA: Yes.
BIG SISTER: Who was better, the boys or girls?
MAMA: The boys are better.
BIG SISTER: You prefer boys...
MAMA: I do. They lie less.
LITTLE SISTER: But you’ve got two girls...
MAMA: Yes, but you are not like other girls...
BIG SISTER: How do you know?
MAMA: Come on, I’m gonna switch off the light now...
LITTLE SISTER: Don’t switch it off.
MAMA: I’ll leave the one in the corridor on.
LITTLE SISTER : That one throws the shadow.
MAMA: It’s just a shadow.
LITTLE SISTER: There is a man there.
BIG SISTER: I want to sleep.
MAMA: Your sister wants to sleep...
LITTLE SISTER: There really is a man there, he threaters with his finger...
MAMA: Nobody can come in here. I won’t let them ...
LITTLE SISTER: He comes when you leave.
MAMA: I’m gonna beat him up.
Who’s bothering my girl?
I’m gonna fix you.
Nobody’s gonna touch my girl.
I’ll get you!
LITTLE SISTER: Have you...
MAMA: Yeah.
LITTLE SISTER: Good.
MAMA: Sleep now.
MAMA sings
Oochie, coochie, coo, little kids come too
Kiddies, kiddies small, you’ve got no house at all,
They came and took the lot, back to their spot
I made a little nest, my tiny hut’s the best
A little God appeared
Puffed through his beard
My tiny home disappeared
It hurts, it hurts, endure
It hurts, it hurts, endure.


SCENE TWO
ROAD

Alice and Big Sister are sitting in the room sharing a cigarette. The curtain’s gone. Sister’s head is in Alice’s lap, the sister is petting her. Alice straightens up. Fixes her hair. She has been crying.

BIG SISTER: So, what are you going to do now?
ALICE: I probably won’t tell anyone. I am just going to leave home.
BIG SISTER: What about mum and dad?
ALICE: They don’t care.
BIG SISTER: Not true.
ALICE: Dad grabbed my chin and looked at me in an ugly way.
BIG SISTER: That’s nothing...
ALICE: It’s everything to me.
BIG SISTER: Little sissy...
ALICE: He never touched me before.
BIG SISTER: You could have ignored him...
ALICE: I did nothing.
BIG SISTER: Yeah...
ALICE: I didn’t.
BIG SISTER: You were locked in with that idiot in the basement.
ALICE: Yes, I was.
BIG SISTER: You were naked.
ALICE: Yes, I was.
BIG SISTER: And?
ALICE: It was just a game. I took off my clothes and he had to look into my eyes.
BIG SISTER: He’s our cousin.
ALICE: You’ve been with him.
BIG SISTER: I wanked him off. Clean job.
ALICE: How…
BIG SISTER: I play around, when they get very excited I wank them off, clean job.
ALICE: Bleugh!
BIG SISTER: It was pretty exciting. I went where he keeps horses and we went together to the field. I got quite excited. Then he did me, but had to keep his eyes closed. Then I did him with the horse glove on. As if nothing had happened. It never occurred to me to look in his eyes. First of all, he’s a peasant, second he’s a bit strange.
ALICE: You think you’re better than him?
BIG SISTER: You’ve always pretended to be the smart one. You had to be the first to have everything. When aunt brings me something, you scream, I meet her behind the house and bury it, and when you fall asleep I eat the candies, and you refused to have a haircut, you ran away when I took you for a haircut.
ALICE: I remember that.
BIG SISTER: You had lice and your hair got matted, you had to cut your hair off...
ALICE: Grandpa used to oil my hair with olive oil and lemon and then comb it for ages.
BIG SISTER: He used to pinch my arse when he got drunk.
ALICE: He didn’t pinch mine...
BIG SISTER: You were too small.
ALICE: Did he do anything else?
BIG SISTER: No. He drowned the puppy when it kept barking.
ALICE: You’re lying.
BIG SISTER: Later you told me that you hated me, after that haircut, and I felt really guilty, mum couldn’t take you, she was working.
ALICE: I still hate you.
BIG SISTER: You hate me because I don’t flatter. I told you to be careful. These are things that mum and dad shouldn’t see. They are nice people.
ALICE: So, you tell me how it all started.
BIG SISTER: What started?
ALICE: With boys...
BIG SISTER: No way, I am not telling you anything.
ALICE: Why not?
BIG SISTER: Because you wouldn’t understand. You’d pretend to be smart and then insult me. You are as thick as 6 short planks.
ALICE: I don’t really care...
BIG SISTER: You do.
ALICE: All those guys you’ve been seeing are bores...
BIG SISTER: You are the most boring little girl I’ve ever met in my life.
ALICE: I’m not a little girl.
BIG SISTER: Yes, you are, and you smell bad. You touch that chin like you are stroking your beard and you are a pretty disgusting little girl...
ALICE: You smell like biscuits.
BIG SISTER: It’s because I wash.
ALICE: Me too.
BIG SISTER: You wash in a hurry just not to have your knickers get stuck, but I rub everywhere, you wash behind your ears to fake it. I enjoy my body.
ALICE: Is your guy gonna take my photo?
BIG SISTER: No.
ALICE: Never mind, it’s all terribly boring.
BIG SISTER: Why? What would you like to do?
ALICE: Something no one has done before.
BIG SISTER: You don’t know how to take care.
ALICE: Teach me.
BIG SISTER: Why should I teach you... It has always been easier for you ...
ALICE: I’m gonna leave...

BIG SISTER sings the LANDLADY song
You do what no one has done
I what no one can see
I’ll have a house and a swimming pool
And I’ll have a pool cleaner
When leaves gather in my pool
He’ll churn it
Left right left right
Kids will wear nice things
Kids will be boys
And the boss will be rich
The boss will be rich
The boss will be mine
The boss will be stupid
Life will be expensive
Life will be mine
To watch


SCENE THREE
FOREST

Snow White and seven dwarves.
Dining room with dwarves
Chests with weapons and sacks with who-knows-what. Grubby tablecloths and broken cups. Damp.

DOC: Today my daughter brought me some coffee and asked me about sugar or milk, kids are madness, kids are from God, kids are the right way to beat aliens, I declare that when she grows up, she will be better than me, than you, than him, than her fucking mother who makes problems about who’s gonna go to the deli...
That’s the problem, who’ll go to the deli, who’s gonna do the dishes, these are all theories about fucking dishes, these are speeches from BC times that normal heads can’t keep in the system longer than two minutes she keeps it for two weeks, fuck it, months, she’s written it down, then again she doesn’t, fuck, keeps it all in her head, what was I saying...
GRUMPY: How your wife gave you an ear-bashing about the deli...
DOC: She didn’t... She just nags, that’s not the problem, you don’t know a thing, boy, that’s not the problem, the problem is not my vanity, when my wife talks, she is not my wife, she is my man, that’s not the problem, the problem is in the fucking story who’s doing what.
GRUMPY: But you don’t do a thing.
DOC: What the fuck does she do?
GRUMPY: Well, the money comes from her side...
DOC: So, here we have it...
GRUMPY: Yeah, we do, why wouldn’t we have it when we have it...
DOC: We have it. What does it matter whose money it is, if we are sharing, fuck, she adopted this way of thinking...
GRUMPY: I don’t know.
DOC: What don’t you know?
GRUMPY: I don’t know how to answer such important questions this early in the morning.
DOC: I do know. Do you know how much I’ve done.
GRUMPY: I know, you got drunk, went to the deli, then you went to the boozer after that, went to see the missus, missus said what she thought about the dishes, so you came here to have a shot.
DOC: You little piece of shit.
(They laugh.)
DWARVES: It smells here.
DOC: Of what?
DWARVES: Of young pussy.
GRUMPY: That’s true.
DOC: Where?
GRUMPY: You’d better ask Dopey.

DWARVES sing the GIRLS song

He brought three of them
One vomited
Then there were two
The second’s gone
Down to one
One as none
Nothing for us
No hands to hug us
That’s the salvation
Or to make cookies
We don’t have
Girls
We don’t have
We want hands to hug us
We want cookies
We want blow jobs
Occasionally
We don’t ask for much
Every man has to have it
Sometimes

DOC: Haven’t you had any?
GRUMPY: No, I haven’t.
(He laughs.)
GRUMPY: It’s not funny at all. She stayed there sobbing, she won’t go home, she had a row with her ma and pa...
DOC: Means we feed a chick.
GRUMPY: Meaning, I feed a chick
DWARVES sing the CHICK POLKA song
Who feeds the chick
Who feeds the little one
With what
With what
Alas alas little chick
Alas alas the little one

GRUMPY: I feed the chick, ’cause I am the only one working here, no one else, I work.
DOC: They work too.
GRUMPY: They work two-three metres and then fool around, I’ve worked for as long as I’ve known myself.
DOC: And today?
GRUMPY: Today I can’t.
(They laugh. DOPEY comes in, scratching himself everywhere.)
DOC: How do I know who her dad is, she wants to come.
DOPEY: She never says anything. I peeled her darkness off, I can’t believe it, I peeled off her darkness, it’s not cool, I really scraped myself.
DOC: How should I know...I am not interested. What comes after I’m interested in.
GRUMPY: Is she still sleeping?
DOPEY: Yeah.

DWARVES sing the CHICK POLKA 2 song
Little chick sleeps
In our pretty house
Our hearts full
In our pretty house
She’s left her bed
Mama made it
Chick’s waiting
For life to start
Chick’s waiting
For dreams to start
Oh, lovely, lovely dreams
We are the right ones

(They laugh.)
DOC: Dopey has to pay today.
DOPEY: Pay what.
DOC: School fees.
GRUMPY: No, he doesn’t.
DOC: Then she’ll pay.
GRUMPY: No, she won’t.
DOC: How is she going to eat if she doesn’t produce anything.
GRUMPY: Leave her alone, I’ll take her today, quick as a flash.
DOPEY: Why?
DOC: It’s nice she’s here, maybe her girlfriends’ll come too.
DOPEY: Here’s my lucky boy.
(He finds the syringe.)
DOC: Wait a bit, shithead.
(He hits DOPEY on the head).
GRUMPY: Why didn’t you ask about her?
DOPEY: Since when should I ask you for anything?
GRUMPY: Since today.
DOPEY: I’m asking.
GRUMPY: Ask.
DOPEY: I am asking.
(They laugh.)
DOC: A question is always the beginning of a relationship in which people prove to each other that they are still together and that they share a common goal, that they agree, you cunt, you bring a high school girl here, nothing for us, house’s full, and why shouldn’t this man, who struggles for the daily bread for all of us, does my wife, my daughter and several honest street workers, wonder when underage girls are brought to our house in the night, ok, but now it enters the register right away.
DOPEY : I didn’t bring her, she came by herself.
DOC: On her own.
(DOPEY injects himself.)
DOC: And when she wakes up she wants to play a bit, well, boy, if one of us went, sad thing, she wakes up alone, she plays alone...
DOPEY : It would be nice to leave... I could draw portraits.
GRUMPY: Your hands are shaking, you can’t work with a pencil.
DOPEY: So, you know how to work with a pencil?
GRUMPY: You can’t.
DOPEY: If only I was in clean air, not here in this basement.
GRUMPY: I sent you for two months.
DOPEY: Yeah, but to what place.
DOC: Nice village, eggs, tits, cows, cottage.
DOPEY: It was a shack.
GRUMPY: It could’ve been a castle to you.
DOPEY: I had to make a fire constantly
DOC: You can’t make a fire.
DOPEY: I can.
DOC: You can’t maintain the fire... Let me explain how to.
(DOC piles some things and prepares to make a fire in the middle of the room.
The girl comes out.)
SNOW WHITE: Hello.
(No one speaks.)
SNOW WHITE : Have I done something wrong?
(Silence.)
SNOW WHITE: Sometimes when I get drunk I talk nonsense. Shall I do the washing-up? I could.
DOC: No way. You can drink, I’ll cut you some meat, have breakfast, but not this and that’s that. Don’t give me those looks, I don’t want you to take drugs, later you won’t be able to come properly.
(DOC leaves.)
SNOW WHITE: Any coffee?
GRUMPY: Nope.
SNOW WHITE: A pot?
GRUMPY: A tiny one.
SNOW WHITE: It’s cracked.
GRUMPY: Go home.
SNOW WHITE: I can’t go home.
GRUMPY: Why not?
SNOW WHITE: Because.
(DOC returns, his hands bloody.)
DOC: Chicky, here’s a roast.
GRUMPY: What’s that?
DOC: It’s a roast, red wine, white bread and cheese rich in calcium so your tits can grow.
SNOW WHITE: What about your hand?
DOC: A hand is a part of the body that you use to pick up something, and when a foreign body appears between you and that something, e.g. glass, wood, and so on, the resistance of the foreign body towards the body creates...
SNOW WHITE: Let me take care of it...
DOC: Don’t you try pulling this on me...
SNOW WHITE: I’m not.
DOC: I’m from an old family and that house, where the shop is now, used to be mine.
GRUMPY: Cut the crap and stop dripping on the floor.
SNOW WHITE: I’ll clean it.
DOC: You’re gonna sit and have breakfast.
SNOW WHITE: I’m not hungry.
DOC: You have to eat.
SNOW WHITE: Fine.
DOC: You are a doll, a kiddo, but you are a doll, everything will be fine.
SNOW WHITE: What?
DOC: I would give anything...
SNOW WHITE: What?
DOC: I would give anything to feel you.
SNOW WHITE: Why don’t you?
DOC: No way. I’ve got a wife, don’t tempt me, you have no idea where you are, you’ve just woken up, your cheeks are puffy, you don’t know where you are...
DOPEY: I can’t listen to this.
DOC: Then don’t.
DOPEY: I am so tired.
(DOPEY leaves. They laugh.)
SNOW WHITE: Why did he leave?
DOC: I can’t stand the fact that Dopey is fucking such a piece of meat.
(He put her in his lap and strokes her back. She sits a bit and then gets up.)
SNOW WHITE: Where is he...
GRUMPY: Kiddo, why don’t you brush your teeth or whatever and go home.
DOC: I can’t stand it.
GRUMPY: Don’t bang your head, the shelf will fall.
DOC: Let the house fall, the whole world, I can’t stand it, I can’t stand the fact that there are people like that Dopey cunt. Do you really think he can protect you, for example if I feel like abusing you, can’t you see he can’t even see, that little cunt, has he asked you for dosh? You’ll see, tomorrow he’ll ask you.
GRUMPY: He’s a handsome chap.
DOC: You wouldn’t mind giving him one.
GRUMPY: Perhaps, but in your case it has been proved.
DOC: I wouldn’t talk about such things.
GRUMPY: I think the girl should go, c’mon, before someone gets angry, before the others come, while the whole thing is still under control.
DOC: Who the hell are you to say when and what...You are a slave... Every day you work for worse than yourself and you think it’s something, that you are somebody... you are a slave. And the babe doesn’t like you... she likes Dopey, I can tell stories, sure I can, you just sit around and rest your working hands and your legs with those veins and you stink... you are a slave.
(GRUMPY gets up and beats everyone. Dwarves run away. SNOW WHITE hides under the table.)
GRUMPY: Come here.
SNOW WHITE: I can’t.
GRUMPY: Come now.
SNOW WHITE: I can’t.
GRUMPY: Fine.
(She gets up and looks at him.)
GRUMPY: I know you haven’t been thinking about me and you don’t want to remember. I know I don’t smell nice...
SNOW WHITE: No.
GRUMPY: Do you like that I am strong.
SNOW WHITE: I do.
GRUMPY: I don’t want to be gentle.
SNOW WHITE: Good.
GRUMPY: I am not forcing you.
SNOW WHITE: Good.
GRUMPY: Think. You can leave now. But you like him. If you want to stay, then me, you get it, then all of us, you understand...
SNOW WHITE: Fine.
GRUMPY: Count to ten.
SNOW WHITE: 12345678910...
GRUMPY: Close your eyes and relax, it’ll hurt, I have to...
(DWARVES clean the whole scene.)

DWARVES sing the DOWN HERE song
We work every day
Down here
People come
Down here
We will die
Down here
People will remember us
Down here
They’ll never know
Who’s who
Who’s who
Down here


SCENE FOUR
GOLDILOCKS and THREE BEARS

Cave. The flat is neat.
GOLDILOCKS and BABY BEAR are under the covers.

GOLDILOCKS: Once more?
BABY BEAR: Five more times...
GOLDILOCKS: Five is not a good number.
BABY BEAR: How’s that?
GOLDILOCKS: I don’t know why but I like saying it.
BABY BEAR: Do you understand it?
GOLDILOCKS: No, I don’t.
BABY BEAR: So why do you say it then?
GOLDILOCKS: I say what I like.
BABY BEAR: I’ll do what I feel like doing to you.
GOLDILOCKS: I’m sorry.
BABY BEAR: About what?
GOLDILOCKS: That I didn’t meet you earlier.
BABY BEAR: What’s that got to do with anything?
GOLDILOCKS: Are you gonna be good?
BABY BEAR: I am always good, that’s how I am.
GOLDILOCKS: You are a good bear.
BABY BEAR: I am.
GOLDILOCKS: I’ve been with some bad people...
BABY BEAR: Don’t talk about it. It doesn’t matter. I am here now. We’ll be together.
GOLDILOCKS: We will, we will...
BABY BEAR: We can stay here or go somewhere else.
GOLDILOCKS: It’s nice here..
BABY BEAR: You have to be careful here, otherwise it’s ok. I’m used to it.
GOLDILOCKS: What are your mum and dad like?
BABY BEAR: They are on their own. I’ve never been like them. And they say all sorts of things, but they’ll do anything for me. For us.
(The light changes. Mama Bear and Papa Bear enter.)
MAMA B: What’s going on?
PAPA B: Look, the upholstery has holes in it.
MAMA B: Horrible.
PAPA B: This armchair is important to me because of its upholstery.
MAMA B: We searched for it for so long.
PAPA B: We waited so long for it.
MAMA B: I haven’t even sat in it more than three times.
PAPA B: It smells strange here.
MAMA B: Yeah, it does.
PAPA B: Alas...
MAMA B: What, love?
PAPA B: Someone’s been drinking from my cup.
MAMA B: Terrible.
PAPA B: Someone’s been eating from my plate.
MAMA B: Horror.
PAPA B: Someone’s been using my razor.
MAMA B: She stayed overnight!
PAPA B: What kind of girl is she?
PAPA B and MAMA B: What kind of girl arrives and sleeps over right away?
(Light changes again. Mama Bear, Papa Bear and Goldilocks are sitting at the table.)
GOLDILOCKS: I have to wake him up.
MAMA B: Why? He is not a shepherd.
PAPA B: He’s a student.
MAMA B: We worked hard so he can become a gentleman.
PAPA B: He’s a young gentleman.
MAMA B: Please, don’t serve tea in those cups you used yesterday, they are not tea cups.
PAPA B: Those are for café au lait. They were my mother’s.
MAMA B: Grandma was a nice woman, she taught me everything, I came from the village and I supported papa until he graduated.
PAPA B: No way is my daughter-in-law going to smoke with a child in her womb, like some gypsy, it’s not nice.
MAMA B: Have you been baptized?
GOLDILOCKS: I will...
PAPA B: Grandma was a teacher and she brought up Papa Bear and his brother, they studied.
PAPA B: I love eating what Mama Bear prepares.
GOLDILOCKS: I have to wake him up.
MAMA B: Let him sleep, he needs rest, he read last night.
GOLDILOCKS: He watched the telly.
MAMA B: We provided for him so he can sleep.
GOLDILOCKS: I can’t sleep.
PAPA B: You should go for a walk.
MAMA B: Come with us.
PAPA B: We are going to grandma’s grave.
MAMA B: Let’s go...you’ll plant a flower today.
PAPA B: Baby Bear used to be with a very nice girl. She’s gone.
MAMA B: She never slept over.
PAPA B: Girls shouldn’t stay overnight.
MAMA B: Ok, Baby Bear’s heart is the most important.
PAPA B: It’s irrelevant whether we love you, it’s important Baby Bear loves you.
MAMA B: You’ll try your best so we can love you too.
PAPA B: You’ll plant a flower on grandma’s grave. My mother never brought anyone home.
MAMA B: She was honest.
PAPA B: I’ve never met a better woman.
MAMA B: You’ll plant a flower for her.
GOLDILOCKS: I don’t like planting flowers.
MAMA B: Why not? Your hands are not dexterous, you’ll learn...
GOLDILOCKS: All right, I’ll learn. I want to get married in church.
PAPA B: My heart’s singing for you, child, you’ll be just fine.
(Four of them sitting.)

PAPA BEAR and MAMA BEAR sing the IT’S NOT OURS song
What you gave birth to
That’s not a man
It’s a plant
This is not our child
It’s your child
What you gave birth to
You gave birth to sin
That’s what it is
You gave birth
You gave birth to your sin
It’s not ours
It’s not ours
It’s not a child it’s an it
You are not a mother
You are ugly
Your blood is ugly
What you gave birth to
Doesn’t have a nose
It’s got a hole
It’s not ours
It’s not ours

MAMA B: She smoked, drank, how could she give birth to anything normal. She watched strange stuff... You’ve got weird things on your walls...
PAPA B: And what kind of name is Chill?
BABY BEAR: My seed is good, it’s her fault.
PAPA B: It’s your fault.
MAMA B: I used to play relaxing music while Baby Bear was in my belly.
GOLDILOCKS: My milk is fine. Who should I give it to...
(She milks herself.)
MAMA B: Baby Bear will have healthy kids.
PAPA B: Baby Bear’s seed is good.
MAMA B: You are not good.
BABY BEAR: She does nothing well.
MAMA B: I’ve heard her telling stories about me. What would she do if she had to cook and wash... and change the chair covers.
PAPA B: And change the chair covers.
MAMA B: And she used grandma’s cups when her guests came.
PAPA B: You let her.
BABY BEAR: I though it was ok to let her, and then she’d prove herself.
MAMA B: Haven’t you seen her sister?
PAPA B: Haven’t you seen how short her skirt is?
MAMA B: The sister’s...
BABY BEAR: Sure I saw it.
MAMA B: And have you seen her mother and how yellow her...
PAPA B: Fingers...
MAMA B: And have you seen her father...
PAPA B: I’ve seen him with younger women...
MAMA B: You don’t say...
PAPA B: I’ve seen him...
BABY BEAR: Why didn’t you tell me?
GOLDILOCKS: You have no right to talk about my dad...
PAPA B: Really? Who the hell is he never to sit with me?
MAMA B: And never stay for lunch.
BABY BEAR: And to tell me how and what?
PAPA B: Who does he think he is?
MAMA B: He hasn’t even been baptized.
PAPA B: Baby Bear, make up your mind.
BABY BEAR: I don’t know...
MAMA B: She’s never going to be a good woman.
PAPA B: She doesn’t respect you.
MAMA B: She doesn’t respect us.
BABY BEAR: The little boy is alone now.
MAMA B: He’s not alone, there are doctors.
PAPA B: It’s all the same to him.
MAMA B: You’ve got a real wife and a real child.

BABY BEAR sings the FOR MY SON song
He isn’t alone
There are stars and the moon
There are dogs and cats
There are fruit wholesalers
There are cab drivers who stop to take a look at you
Stars and dogs and cats
In him there’s light
In his room there’s a light
If they just don’t turn off his light
’Cause he’s afraid
Alone


SCENE FIVE
SWAMP

Frog’s lair is filled with nice expensive things.
There’s a big sofa with many cushions.
There’s a small one with fewer cushions.
There’s a chair.
There a multicoloured air mattress with a big pillow where Frog usually rests his head after thinking a lot.
Next to the air mattress there’s a low table with piles of food.
When FROG and THUMBELINA enter, she doesn’t know where to sit.
She drops into the chair, he sits cross-legged on the mattress. Then she sits next to him.

FROG: Great vintage. It’s gone now. I rarely sit in this room, rarely. I sit in the study when someone visits, I look rather monumental to myself.
THUMBELINA: Why?
FROG: Because of the table. And the chair, I look somehow huge.
THUMBELINA: It’s a good table, indeed. Was it expensive?
FROG: Probably.
THUMBELINA: Was it somebody’s?
FROG: Probably.
THUMBELINA: Imagine if something terrible happened to that family and you have their table now.
FROG: No, ghosts are a matter of stomach.
THUMBELINA: I used to have a ring. I still have it. I bought it in an antique shop. I had to have that ring. I looked for the money for a few days, at that time it was a big sum for me. Later I thought what if something terrible had happened to the woman who had the ring before.
FROG: I can say that nothing terribly terrible has happened to me, ever.
THUMBELINA: Maybe it will some day?
FROG: It’s too late for that, all I worry about is for my children to do well. I have a son and a daughter.
THUMBELINA: It’s nice here. Don’t talk about children. I can’t stand talk about children.
FROG: It’s all well planned, the whole situation seems incredible, I’d almost think it was all autobiographical.
THUMBELINA: I am glad you think there’s something there.
FROG: The whole situation feels as if you were in that place, it’s so real, yet foggy.
THUMBELINA: I really don’t know.
THUMBELINA: Do you really like my work?
FROG: Just tell me, what does that paper ship represent?
THUMBELINA: Did you like it burning?
FROG: It must mean something to you?
THUMBELINA: That’s banal.
FROG: Yes, but I won’t tell anyone, it stays between us. I won’t announce it and I don’t like being banal and having explanations for everything, I think you are one of the rare irrational beings who is conscious or perhaps not, that’s a higher force, please, you haven’t come here for an exam, I’ll help you with the exhibition, I’ll do anything, just that I have a feeling, such a subtle feeling, that that ship means something.
THUMBELINA: It does.
FROG: Maybe you lost your virginity aboard a ship...You grew up on the river...sorry for asking, don’t be shy, there can’t be any shame between us.
THUMBELINA: I respect you...
FROG: Just without this inferiority, I can’t wait, I am an old man, I can’t go through all that stuff in order to prove that we are equal, I can’t wait, we talk like two adults, if possible, if not I’ll bullshit the same shit I bullshit to any journalist, for Christ sake why did you cross your legs, take a deep breath, talk to me!
THUMBELINA: Fine.
FROG: Was that the first love?
THUMBELINA: The first love was the dwarves. That’s how I call them.
FROG: Real dwarves.
THUMBELINA: Not real. It was in an abandoned house, they lived there, so I went there every day instead of going to school.
FROG: Interesting. So it did happen to you.
THUMBELINA: What?
FROG: The whole situation.
THUMBELINA: There’s nothing particularly interesting in it. Nothing happened to me. It’s all stories.
FROG: And your parents?
THUMBELINA: They didn’t know. I was so proud to be accepted. I did everything they did. There were other girls too, but I was so proud I was with them... as a part of...they put up a tent for me in the middle of the house, I slept in it.
FROG: Was there any love?
THUMBELINA: I was in love with Dopey. That’s how I used to call him.
FROG: Dopey...
THUMBELINA: I trusted them a lot.
FROG: So, with whom was the first love.
THUMBELINA: With several of them...
FROG: Did you suffer?
THUMBELINA: No...
FROG: How’s that?
THUMBELINA: Dopey was there.
FROG: And the ship?
THUMBELINA: My dad made it for me. Every year he used to make one and put old toys in it, one time it was a blind bear, another a headless doll, then a pair of trousers so old you could see through them and so on...I couldn’t part with those things, but he would make a ship and put the things in it and tell me now this bear is going who knows where to mama bear or this doll is going to meet a doll prince who’ll fix her head and it was all so solemn...
FROG: So, father was that figure you dream of...
THUMBELINA: Father wasn’t any figure, father was father...What are you talking about...
FROG: I agree, let’s drop the official tone. So what, girls often project things on their fathers. Later you got married, it was a short one...
THUMBELINA: What do you mean project, you asked about the ship and I told you...What marriage, how did you think of...
FROG: You are not like people your age, they can’t understand you. You’ve got a secret...
THUMBELINA: Can you do a forward roll...
FROG: I can.
THUMBELINA: Let me see...
FROG: Here you go.
THUMBELINA: Bravo.
FROG: I used to play football.
THUMBELINA: Really.
FROG: Yes. I was pretty skinny. I didn’t look bad, but I was small.
THUMBELINA: I can’t imagine fucking with you.
FROG: I’m not interested.
THUMBELINA: And what are you interested in?
FROG: Just being close, I’m not interested in all that gymnastics, I’ve had plenty of that.
THUMBELINA: I doubt that.
FROG: What?
THUMBELINA: That you’ve had plenty.
FROG: I have indeed.
THUMBELINA: Well, when one is famous.
FROG: That too.
THUMBELINA: What would you do to me now?
FROG: Nothing, why are you talking like that.
THUMBELINA: You have to tell me exactly.
FROG: Why are you so rough.
THUMBELINA: But it’s all about that, isn’t it?
FROG: No.
THUMBELINA: You don’t think my work is any good?
FROG: You see, it’s good, it could be even better...
THUMBELINA: I don’t think so. I am not worth much.
(FROG starts kissing her. She gently pushes him away.)
THUMBELINA: It’s a bit gross.
FROG: I could just sit next to you. We don’t have to kiss...
THUMBELINA: Good.
FROG: Thanks.
THUMBELINA: That island with your house, what’s it called?
FROG: It’s called...I don’t know...
THUMBELINA: Have you got any water?
FROG: There’s a water tank, with rain water for your hair.
THUMBELINA: Have I told you how my hair fell out.
FROG: Why did your hair fall out...
THUMBELINA: I was angry, everything was going wrong... And Chill was not well, they wouldn’t let me see him on weekends. I was upset. When he sees me he bangs his head on the wall.
(FROG wanks next to her.)
THUMBELINA: Nothing will be the way it used to.
(Long applause, camera flashes. THUMBELINA drinks and dances.)

FROG and THUMBELINA sing the SUCCESS song
I’ve arrived at that beautiful place
And they were all there
And they looked for me
And I was there
Then I was alone and I left
To fuck the barman
The barman was quick
Mama, can you see me now
Mama can you hear me now
Mama this was all
Because of you
Mama
Why don’t you talk to me
Mama


SCENE SIX
NEST

The Hunter and the Princess observe the building across the road through binoculars. They pass a bottle of wine and a joint to each other.
HUNTER: I’d love to have an empty room, a wall full of books, and then only windows where I can see a lopsided hill with a single tree or a river with a single boat.
PRINCESS: I have a different dream, I can see roofs and a little flat with a balcony looking towards other balconies and roofs, the roofs of another town and some people to watch.
HUNTER: What people?
PRINCESS: A woman plucking her hair out in front of a mirror, then she drinks a coffee on the balcony, and stares down all day long, it’s warm there, and underneath there’s a cobbler who looks up her skirt.
HUNTER: The cobbler has a secret passion, he loves collecting and colouring the eggs of exotic birds.
PRINCESS: And then one day he brings her some eggs.
HUNTER: And she makes scrambled eggs.
PRINCESS: And he gets terribly sad.
HUNTER: And they start living together.
PRINCESS: No, they don’t.
HUNTER: They do.
PRINCESS: No, the cobbler dies.
HUNTER: It’s better if the big tits woman dies. Why don’t you say something?
PRINCESS: I think your son doesn’t love me.
HUNTER: Why should he.
(They laugh.)
PRINCESS: I think he can’t stand me.
HUNTER: It takes time.
PRINCESS: He doesn’t like talking to me.
HUNTER: He doesn’t like talking generally.
PRINCESS: And he never looks at me.
HUNTER: He is confused, you are the same age.
PRINCESS: He looks younger.
HUNTER: No, you look older.
(They laugh.)
PRINCESS: I think I’d be dead if it wasn’t for you.
HUNTER: You think all these people know we are watching them, and what we are talking about?
PRINCESS: They’d like to know, I haven’t done anything since I met you.
HUNTER: What would you do?
(They laugh.)
PRINCESS: I think I am fine.
HUNTER: Don’t think too much...I’ve worked a lot all my life. I haven’t relaxed a single day. I love it when I see that you are safe. I love it when you make it. We’ll invite your parents, we’ll visit them. I know your father...We were sitting the other day, talking about things, I think he liked it...
PRINCESS: Liked what?
HUNTER: That you are settled.
PRINCESS: I don’t think he thinks about it...
HUNTER: Everybody does...
PRINCESS: How long will it last?
HUNTER: Forever...
PRINCESS: Here he comes.
HUNTER: Get dressed.
PRINCESS: Why does it upset him so much.
HUNTER: It gets on his nerves.
PRINCESS: He is too serious for his age.
HUNTER: Maybe it’s because of me. He’s not allowed to drink. Let’s not talk about it.
(Son comes in.)
EAGLET: You are not alone.
HUNTER: No.
PRINCESS: I can go for a walk.
EAGLET: You are not dressed for a walk.
HUNTER: What does it mean to be dressed for a walk?
EAGLET: I don’t know, but in any case she is not.
HUNTER: Are you hungry?
EAGLET: Yes, I am.
HUNTER: What shall we eat?
EAGLET: The same thing we ate the day before yesterday. It was so good...
HUNTER: I have to prepare it. I’ll prepare it.
PRINCESS: I can’t eat that.
HUNTER: You’ll try.
(Father leaves. Silence.)
PRINCESS: How should I get dressed.
EAGLET: Comb your hair, change what you’ve been wearing all this time, some other colour...
PRINCESS: I wear this shirt because I have to...
EAGLET: Why?
PRINCESS: I simply have to. What’s that, that dirty ribbon you wear around your neck..
EAGLET: It’s my grandma’s scarf. I grew up with her...
PRINCESS: Do you miss her?
EAGLET: No, nor should you.
PRINCESS: Why, I don’t even know her.
EAGLET: You wouldn’t pass with grandma...No way...
PRINCESS: That’s interesting. Why do you think so...
EAGLET: Simple, we need peace, and you are not peace.
PRINCESS: You are some expert in peace and unease, peace, unease...
EAGLET: Have you any idea what kind of women he has had. Unimaginable...
PRINCESS: He could still have them now. I love women too...
EAGLET: Have I shown you a picture of my girlfriend?
PRINCESS: I don’t know, is this a trick question. You’ve never shown my anything...
EAGLET: I really am gonna show it to you...
PRINCESS: Why don’t you just bring her?
EAGLET: I have no such intentions, why should I do it now, maybe one day I will, I don’t see why it is important...
PRINCESS: So I can see her.
EAGLET: Why would you want to?
PRINCESS: Why do you want to show me the picture?
EAGLET: I have the incredible feeling that you’d prefer to be with me somewhere else.
(HUNTER comes in.)
HUNTER: You need to eat a lot to get strong.
EAGLET: You have to get stronger.
HUNTER: Let’s drink.
EAGLET: I’m going.
(EAGLET leaves.)
HUNTER: I have the incredible feeling that this child will soon leave me. He was weak. And he doesn’t look any better. Look how darkness comes. Look.
PRINCESS: I can see that. Something nice but horrible is waiting for me.
HUNTER: Nothing’s waiting for you, get that. You’ll sit and do something, naked, and I’ll watch and enjoy. Then I’ll give you a massage from here to here. Then I’ll organise your exhibition, the biggest ever. Then I’ll take you to some deserted place.
PRINCESS: It’s going to be like that...
HUNTER: Of course...
PRINCESS: Do you think I am good?
HUNTER: It means nothing. What does it mean...I know that I am not... What does it mean to you. You’ve got a gift. Oh, how I longed to have one. I don’t. I enjoy you. My son’s got something. I know that. I enjoy you and him. I had a gift to snatch. Yes, yes, to snatch. But, here I am at peace. I know everything. Oh, yes I do. You don’t need to know. Do something, have a drink, breathe, I don’t want...
PRINCESS: If I have a child.
HUNTER: I have a child.
PRINCESS: If I have a healthy child. I am sure I could have a healthy child.
HUNTER: This world is not for children. I don’t want children.
PRINCESS: To live with a child and to take care of you.
HUNTER: You should do other things.
PRINCESS: You think I can’t.
HUNTER: I don’t care. I am not interested in being sixty with a ten-year old child, I don’t care for children, I didn’t care for this one, until we were able to sit and have a talk.
PRINCESS: I care.
HUNTER: Who asked you?
PRINCESS: It would be good if nothing...

HUNTER sings the WORLD IS YOURS song
Hush...
It’s all yours
Don’t think about the past
You’ll have a balcony to wave from
You’ll have all the children
They’ll see what you’ve made
All children and all people
They’ll see you waving
You charge for the balcony
Charge for the children you won’t have
Charge for your own hell
Piss on the world
From your balcony
The World is yours
Hell is yours


SCENE SEVEN
DARK BOROUGH

Closed door. The WOMAN is squatting in front of the door in her knickers.

WOMAN: Let me come in. Let me in, love, please, I am cold. Let me in, we’ll talk tomorrow, let me in. Let me in, you bastard, I am sick, I am in pain, I am leaving tomorrow, you piece of shit, let me... And why...because I talked about something that happened in the past, I talked about myself and a summer’s day and the dress I wore, let me in it’s been raining...
Why...you are afraid. I am leaving tomorrow, I won’t make it, let me come in.
(She kneels at the doorstep.)
EAGLE: Forgive me, forgive. Here, hit me...
WOMAN: I won’t.
EAGLE: Let me hug you, I won’t let you go.
(They hug.)
WOMAN: Let’s sleep...tomorrow.
EAGLE: Does it hurt there...
WOMAN: I’ll get warm and it’ll pass.
EAGLE: I’ll warm you up with my fire, I’ll burn your...
WOMAN: It’s all burnt already.
(The door falls. Behind is a bed with a skeleton curtain. They are in the bed, making love.)
EAGLE: My dick and my father’s, they are similar. A taste only you know, it’s the same when I lose consciousness, I’ve never talked to him about you, I don’t talk to him about anything...I am just curious...
WOMAN: Don’t ask me that.
EAGLE: He hasn’t stopped giving us money.
WOMAN: Don’t talk about it.
EAGLE: He thinks I have talent.
WOMAN: You do.
EAGLE: I don’t.
WOMAN: I love you.
EAGLE: I don’t love you. I like fucking you, I do. I can’t say I don’t love you. It’s touching the way you hang around, yes.
(The WOMAN spits on him. They wrestle.)
WOMAN: You are squeezing my hand.
EAGLE: Fight.
(She spits on him. He pulls her hair.)
WOMAN: Why don’t you kill me...
EAGLE: Because you are already dead. You were dead when I saw you for the first time. You’ve been dying since your birth. Because you are evil.
WOMAN: No.
EAGLE: You don’t have ovaries, your teeth are falling out, when I look into your eyes I see heads and heads inside.
WOMAN: Forgive him for being better than you. He is better than you and always will be... Let me sleep. Let me sleep for once. If I leave now you’ll come for me and then again... let me sleep... If I can’t leave then let me sleep.
EAGLE: No.
WOMAN: Why not?
EAGLE: I won’t let you sleep.
WOMAN: Let me.
EAGLE: No, you have to protect me. All sorts of things come to me in the night. Protect me. So, I won’t be blown away.
WOMAN: Is there anything more important than you?
EAGLE: He used to be the same.
WOMAN: He doesn’t hate.
EAGLE: It’s easy for such a man not to hate.
WOMAN: Don’t look at me.
EAGLE: When was the last time you saw the child...
WOMAN: They wouldn’t let me. I was late.
EAGLE: You were late on purpose.
WOMAN: I wasn’t.
EAGLE: You were drunk, I wouldn’t let you anywhere.
WOMAN: He can’t see me.
EAGLE: He sees everything, he sits there and knows what you are doing...
(He laughs.)
EAGLE: He can watch now.
(They make love.)
WOMAN: Somebody’s got to go...
EAGLE: You are not going.
(They dance, each on their own. At some point, he stops, puts the rope around his neck and picks up an accordion.)
EAGLE sings the ABOUT DEVOURING song
I eat you every day
My dear one
I wait for you to die
My dear one
I wait to see your naked heart
How it beats, boom, boo boo boom
My dear one
I like you a lot
That’s why I go
That’s why I go
Nobody’ll eat you slowly
Nobody’ll love you so
Like me
Like me
My dear
My lovely
(WOMAN screams.)


SCENE EIGHT
HANSEL AND GRETEL

The trees are howling, as if someone’s screaming, as if a child’s crying, as if a woman’s laughing, no one knows how, but it freezes the blood...

GRETEL: She turned off the lights on purpose.
HANSEL: I am fed up with coming here.
GRETEL: I am not, I love being here.
HANSEL: You admire her.
GRETEL: So what.
HANSEL: I don’t at all.
GRETEL: This house looks like a biscuit.
HANSEL: She’s disgusting.
GRETEL: Everything’s disgusting to you.
HANSEL: I like simple houses.
GRETEL: There’s a nice table for us, we can sit.
HANSEL: I can’t sit when the wind is blowing.
GRETEL: Is there anything that you don’t mind.
HANSEL: Yes, there is. You.
(Hansel kisses her.)
HANSEL: Look, the light’s come on up there.
GRETEL: It’s like on a Christmas tree.
HANSEL: Stop cuddling.
GRETEL: Why should I.
HANSEL: Stop it.
GRETEL: I can stop being with you anytime, I can go out on that road, can you hear it, put my thumb out, hitch a ride to town.
HANSEL: Something could happen to you.
GRETEL: We can go inside the house.
HANSEL: Can’t you see that she’s got visitors...some silhouettes...
GRETEL: So what, she’ll receive us even more gladly.
HANSEL: I don’t know.
GRETEL: What would you do for me?
(They kiss. The door opens and lights up the kissing couple.)
WITCH: Who’s there...is it you...
HANSEL: Depends who you are looking for...
WITCH: How many of you are there?
GRETEL: Two.
WITCH: A boy and a girl.
HANSEL: She’s completely drunk...
WITCH: How many of you are there, kids?
HANSEL: Two of us...
WITCH: Chill, here is a boy and a girl, you won’t be alone. Wow, you are big kids.
HANSEL: I don’t know what’s so funny...
WITCH: You are a dangerous boy.
GRETEL: We’d like to sit for a while...
WITCH: Ok, kids, remove the mud from your shoes, take them off...what are you looking at...take this.
HANSEL: I don’t want to wear this.
WITCH: It’s warm, put it on.
GRETEL: Put it on, I like it.
WITCH: Take it home.
GRETEL: Really?
WITCH: Take it home.
GRETEL: Thank you.
WITCH: You are welcome, they are not mine anyway.
GRETEL: Whose are they?
WITCH: Who can remember, so many have visited. The one with a notebook. She forgot her notebook and gloves. There’s plenty to drink. Take it, sonny, drink.
(The house is around them.)
HANSEL: Son...
WITCH: Well, honey, you could be my son, my son is just like you, fine, not exactly...
HANSEL: Where are the glasses?
WITCH: The glasses are everywhere.
(They look at each other.)
WITCH: Don’t be angry at me, look around, they are everywhere. What do you want now, a cupboard?
(He looks around.)
WITCH: Do you want hot–cold?
(He looks around.)
WITCH: You want a wrapping paper cupboard, do you?
(He looks around.)
WITCH: Wow, I love it when someone is dangerous. The glasses are in the piano.
GRETEL: It’s hot in here.
WITCH: Honey, why don’t you cut off that hair?
GRETEL: Why?
(Silence. HANSEL wants to sit next to GRETEL, but she sits alone on the chair.)
WITCH: Tell me, what would you like to do?
(Silence.)
WITCH: Have you brought anything of yours?
(Silence.)
WITCH: C’mon, kids, tell me, it’s going to be fun... Are you here to get warm, are you journalists or you’ve got the worm inside and you want to create something...
GRETEL: I have.
HANSEL: I’ve brought it too.
GRETEL: Let’s see what you’ve got. You go first.
WITCH: I have to take a leak, honey, wait a sec.
(The WITCH leaves.)
GRETEL: You pretended you didn’t want to come here.
HANSEL: I don’t know what I want or what I don’t want.
GRETEL: Five times we went around the house, we got lost and found, we had a terrible row and now you are ready to... Where are your works, where did you put them, show me...
HANSEL: Wait a bit. She is disgusting, what can you learn from her, look how disgusting she is. I want to prove to you that she is nothing. She is nothing.
GRETEL: No, I have to learn.
HANSEL: Who are you... What happened to you. I don’t want to argue...because of a drunken...
(The WITCH has been in the room listening for a while.)
WITCH: When I drink my brain works, I piss often because I was torn while giving birth. I don’t have ovaries. They found some bones in one of my ovaries when they took them out. I had probably eaten twins, I used to be stronger. In the other one they found a plastic bag.
GRETEL: Bag.
WITCH: My God, you are already drunk...
HANSEL: Shall we show you our work?
WITCH: Not now. Let me get to know you first. I can’t now. Maybe not even tomorrow. Maybe we’ll all die. Who gives a fuck about your works. I planted flowers there, but wind.. wind... Who gives a fuck about the wind, let’s make cocktails, have some music, that’ll be nice...
GRETEL: What have you’ve been up to lately?
WITCH: I had a row with a neighbour. His dog is an idiot.
(HANSEL laughs.)
WITCH: Happy now?
HANSEL: I don’t know.
WITCH: I am telling you, pretty boy. You are happy not to know your capabilities.
HANSEL: I know my capabilities.
WITCH: You don’t know your limits.
HANSEL: Neither do you, mate.
WITCH: I am glad we are on friendly terms.
(HANSEL leaves.)
GRETEL: He’s a bit confused.
WITCH: Is he?
GRETEL: Yes.
WITCH: Why?
GRETEL: Actually, he appreciates your work more than I do, I don’t know what he was expecting.
WITCH: Yes.
GRETEL: When you imagine famous artists you should always somehow...
WITCH: You mean, their shit doesn’t stink.
GRETEL: Not that simple.
WITCH: I know, honey...I am a drunk whose house is a mess.
GRETEL: I didn’t mean that.
WITCH: You are too polite to get what you want.
GRETEL: I am not interested in effects but rather in the essence.
WITCH: You don’t say...
GRETEL: I think that your school is already outdated.
WITCH: I am too big a bitch for you.
GRETEL: What?
WITCH: I like it when young girls are afraid of me. You can’t imagine how much I hate young girls, and when I see they are still afraid of me and scratch their tiny teeth on me I think, fuck it I won’t tell you...I am too big a bitch for you... Let me tell you one more thing, forget about art...
GRETEL: Suck my cock...
WITCH: Don’t be angry. I can help you if you want. You should stay out of it. You have to. And no fighting. Fighting is in you. Death is in you. Listen, I’ll tell you something, it’s a bit...I can’t in front of men.
GRETEL: Tell me.
WITCH: I’ll die soon, but I don’t want it to hurt, and it’s not important that...
(The wind howls.)
GRETEL: What’s that?
WITCH: Chill.
GRETEL: Does he exist or is it the house creaking?
WITCH: Chill exists for me.
GRETEL: Are you serious?
WITCH: About what?
GRETEL: Well, about dying...
WITCH: Yes.
GRETEL: I am sorry.
WITCH: Me too.
GRETEL: Sorry I was rude.
WITCH: No, I am sorry.
GRETEL: I am really sorry.
WITCH: Why? The fact you don’t like my work doesn’t mean you’d want to see me dead.
(The WITCH breaks the chair.)
GRETEL: No, I don’t like your work.
WITCH: I know. And I know you’ve been sniffing around the house for months. You could do me a favour.
GRETEL: Yes?
WITCH: You are free, that’s obvious.
GRETEL: What?
WITCH: I’d like to see the two of you...
(HANSEL comes in.)
HANSEL: I looked around the house. There are many doors that can’t be opened.
GRETEL: Why do you look so satisfied?
HANSEL: She’s got an incredible library. You have an incredible library.
GRETEL: You shouldn’t roam through the house.
HANSEL: Well, if you take in strangers in the middle of the night you should expect all sorts of things.
WITCH: Well said. I’d like all sorts of things to happen.
GRETEL: They will...
WITCH: My son, he’s asleep now, his girlfriend was here, she’s lovely, when he was a little boy I used to imagine the kind of girl he should have, this one is beautiful.
HANSEL: Why’s the chair broken?
WITCH: What did you want to talk about?
GRETEL: How old are you?
WITCH: I was born the year my mother had never looked more beautiful, she got the first lines around her eyes and I had a sister much prettier than me. I have to take milk to Chill.
(The WITCH leaves.)
(HANSEL and GRETEL make love. The WITCH watches them.)
WITCH: Chill, I’d really like you to come down and meet these young people, they are your age. I haven’t drunk a lot today. You are so sweet, when you worry about your mother. I mean, would you want another mother. I know I am boring.
You are such a serious boy. Who’d say that something so serious could come out of me. And your dad. He wasn’t a serious man. He even looked silly, which is not my case, I always looked older. Until the age of thirty. Then I started to look like my father, and my face, always refusing to accept make-up, you know, just like in those first class pieces of cunt, oops, sorry, suddenly my face started to look young. A bit puffy. Ha, ha...
You think so?
How do you know, did you see you through the window. Yes, she’s pretty. I think she thinks of herself as a terrific lover, she undresses so slowly. Who’s gonna tell you about women if not your mother. I am disgusting.
Ha, ha.
Really? And the guy?
Yes, he is.
He is interesting, he’s got some depth, though he’s uptight. She pretends to be free, in fact, it is he who’s free.
To be free means to follow oneself regardless of everything. I am not free. You are, Chill. You are. You are the free-est young man in the world.
(HANSEL and GRETEL holding each other. GRETEL pulls away.)
GRETEL: I had no idea she had a son, where is he?
HANSEL: What do you mean where is he?
GRETEL: Well, from what she says, everything the woman’s done, I wouldn’t have said she’s got any children.
HANSEL: I would.
GRETEL: I think that women like her shouldn’t have children.
HANSEL: Just minutes ago you were delighted, you almost sucked her big toe.
GRETEL: That’s different.
HANSEL: The fact she hasn’t got children...
GRETEL: Well, she went into his room, her tit hanging out.
HANSEL: As if you’ve never seen a mother’s tit.
GRETEL: Don’t give me that.
HANSEL: No, you’ve really never seen a mother’s tit, or father’s ball peeking out of his pants.
GRETEL: Don’t give me that.
HANSEL: What?
GRETEL: Well, well...
HANSEL: What?
GRETEL: We’ve been drinking...
HANSEL: What?
GRETEL: That one, about my parents being rude...
HANSEL: You are rude, not your parents, they are just simple.
GRETEL: I am a thousand times better than you.
(The WITCH comes in.)
HANSEL: Do you think you should have children?
GRETEL: I don’t want them now.
HANSEL: Ok, but should you have them?
GRETEL: Sure, I am not like that.
HANSEL: Like what?
GRETEL: She is flirting with you.
(The WITCH talks.)
WITCH: What were you expecting, honey, that you were going to find a dignified lady sitting in her study looking wisely at you.
GRETEL: No.
HANSEL: Tell me.
WITCH: I don’t know why you are so nervous, kids, I am not angry.
Go upstairs and have a rest if you want. I can’t...
GRETEL: Chill is there.
WITCH: Who?
GRETEL: Your son.
WITCH: Never mind, he’s reading a book...
HANSEL: Why doesn’t he come down here.
WITCH: I don’t want to talk about it. He can’t come. I left him. I can’t see him, sometimes I see him through the window in that house. Then he can’t see me. I am surprised he’s survived this long. He’s like a plant.
(HANSEL hugs her.)
WITCH: You are such a nice boy. If only ... if only... such a nice boy. Next time. I won’t be like this next time. Next time I’ll take you to a place.
HANSEL: I am so sorry...
WITCH: Don’t be...don’t...
(HANSEL hugs her, cuddles and rocks her.)
GRETEL: Let’s all take our clothes off.
WITCH: Let’s.
(They all strip.)
GRETEL: And let’s sit like this, naked.
HANSEL: I’ll put some music on.
GRETEL: I’ll dance.
WITCH: I am old.
(She cries.)
GRETEL: Hey, let’s make cocktails...
HANSEL: I’ll make you one. There is not much. The bottles are empty.
WITCH: I’d like to be born now.
(The WITCH dances. HANSEL watches her.)
HANSEL: I am happy we came here. She is such an exciting woman, she’s incredible, maybe I’ll stay here tomorrow too.
GRETEL: I don’t feel like staying.
WITCH (sits): Actually, I wouldn’t like to be born now. The night is alone. I want to be born in the morning. I’ll sleep now and I’ll be born in the morning.
(HANSEL sits next to her and kisses her.)
GRETEL: How can you do that?
HANSEL: Come to us.
GRETEL: I don’t want to.
HANSEL: Come.
(The WITCH and HANSEL cuddle. The WITCH has her eyes closed. Then she opens them. She starts to scream.)
WITCH: No, don’t...we’ll only sleep. I’ll make you something to eat tomorrow. Chill, she is not the girl for you. I will chase her away...
Ouch...go there, go there...No...I am your mother. Don’t...
GRETEL: Let’s call an ambulance.
HANSEL: Don’t.
WITCH: Chill, stop hugging me, don’t...
(The WITCH puts her arms around HANSEL’s neck. She is strong.)
GRETEL: I am calling the police.
WITCH (releasing HANSEL): I am so ugly...
HANSEL: You are not.
(The WITCH starts hitting him.)
WITCH: I don’t want to...
(GRETEL cries. The WITCH stops.)
WITCH: Go home, kids. Get dressed. Take what you like and go. I’ll give you money.
HANSEL: I can’t leave now.
WITCH: I’ll put you in contact with the right people. I don’t want to see you. I want to lie down, die and be born again.
HANSEL: Why...
WITCH: To lie in clean...
(Darkness.)
GRETEL’s voice: We walked for a long time that night, got lost several times, then I stopped by a club.
HANSEL: I don’t know whether to write that scene the way it happened, maybe I should try writing after the experience...I don’t understand how I could think of such things, I was so ashamed later.
FROG (dressed as a doctor): It’s alright, all young people explore, even me when I was your age, you wouldn’t believe it, I’ll tell all you about it at the first opportunity, now our session is over, if you can’t sleep take this...
SISTER: I wanted to see her so many times. I’ve always loved her a lot. But her chatty mouth, oh God, I wanted so many times to see her but she always humiliated me, oh God, how embarrassing, I can feel her hair in my fingers though she never properly combed it, her hair is like a dog’s tail, I make her a braid and then I wake up...
FROG: Women shouldn’t get involved in art. It eats them up, they don’t have a foundation. She was quite an idiot, I can’t count the things she used to say about people who did nothing but good to her. Why would I say only good things about the dead. Hypocrisy...
She is quite a shithead, I have no intention of saying good things and I don’t want to say nice things about her, leave me alone, all of you...
BABY BEAR: Nobody wants to tell me how she died, if only I knew how she died, I couldn’t sleep, I was thinking about how she died... it doesn’t even know that she’s dead. It doesn’t know she existed...
HUNTER: She fell asleep in the snow. She was drunk. It’s not a bad death. Good night, beauty. Good night, dear son.

WITCH: Daddy, I wanted to ask you to make me a ship so I can leave
Daddy
Make me a ship so I can leave
Daddy
Sit with me in the ship
Daddy
I didn’t drink nor was I there
Daddy
Protect me on the ship
Daddy
It didn’t happen to me
My dear daddy
Let’s go together to the ship
Daddy
Let’s sail and you’ll tell me stories
Nice stories, daddy
I want to be born again
My daddy


THE END

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