Saturday, December 31, 2011



Act I

(The Bard steps out from behind the closed curtain and stands in front of it, center stage)

Bard: Oh sing to me you gracious Muses, beautiful,
Fair daughters of fine memory and God, divine
Inspirers of music, song, and poetry –
Please sing to me in verse the song of Adam and
The way he lost the one he loved, dear Lily, gone,
Although he loved her more than life, so even death
Could not deprive him of his love. It was his fate
To love his gift to get his gift to bring a gift
To you. A loving heart thrown in the pit of fire
Is not destroyed, but purified and turned to gold.
This is the process alchemists once sought in vain –
Yet not in vain – the leaden soul has been transformed.
Poor Adam sits now in his room and watches her,
Beloved Lily, standing there before the full-
Length antique mirror standing in his living room . . .

Scene 1

(The Bard gestures with his hand and the curtain opens to a living room with a couch and an antique full-length mirror center. There is a table on the other end of the couch with a C.D. player on top of it. The Bard backs off the stage, leading the opening curtain. Adam is sitting on the couch, watching Lily look at herself in the mirror. The mirror should be edge-on to the audience, and in fact should be missing the glass so characters can pass through it. Adam stands and approaches the audience.)

Adam: You have no idea how much I love this woman who only wants to be my friend. I want her for myself, to show her how much I love her. My heart is broken every day I see but cannot have her. And yet it breaks my heart when I can’t see her every day. Tortured with or without her, I’d rather be tortured by her presence.

(Adam goes back to the couch and sits down)

Lily: This is a fantastic mirror you found. Incredible. You need to clean this tarnish off. But the extra color gives it character, so I don’t know what I’d really do.

Adam: I think there’s a flaw in the glass. I sometimes get strange glimpses of images that are and are not there. Just some strange reflections.

Lily: Oh! Yes, I see what you mean. For a second there the couch looked like a horse. I think I’d keep the glass – it distorts the world in interesting ways.

Adam: Can I get you something to drink? A glass of wine?

Lily: A glass of wine. Sounds nice.

(Adam walks offstage. Lily looks around and notices the C.D. player)

Lily: You mind if I play your C.D.?

Adam (offstage): Go right ahead.

(Lily pushes the play button and the C.D. player begins playing Squirrel Nut Zippers’ “Hell”)

Lily: Oh my God. I love this song. Remember that summer . . . ?

(Adam reenters carrying two glasses of wine)

Adam: Absolutely. “Zoot Suit Riot.” Great stuff.

Lily: Come on, dance with me.

(Lily begins dancing to the music. Adam smiles as he stand there, holding both glasses of wine)

Lily: Put down the wine and dance with me.

(Adam puts the wine down on the table in front of the C.D. player and joins her. They dance a swing dance to the rest of the song. At the end, Adam turns the music down so it’s barely audible and picks up the wine)

Adam: Let’s sit and have some wine.

(He hands her a glass. Each swirls the glass and places the mouth of the glass to their noses and smells deeply before tasting)

Lily: Mmm. Very good. You must really know your wine.

Adam: It’s an art I’m trying to acquire. I think it will go well with the burgundy steaks I’m making us.

Lily: It was so sweet of you to make dinner for me. You didn’t have to be so fancy, you know.

Adam: I love to cook. And when do I get to be fancy like this? Wouldn’t salmon with figs or coq au vin be a bit sad for a single person to sit down to eat?

Lily: You’re right. Beauty should be shared.

(Lily raises her glass. He raises his. Their eyes lock for a moment, then both take a drink. When they finish, Adam stops and sniffs the air)

Adam: Smells like the food’s ready. Come on. The table’s set. I’ll get the food.

Lily: It smells wonderful. I can’t wait to eat it.

(Lily follows Adam offstage. Lights go dark)

Scene 2

(Lights come on. Adam is standing, facing the audience. Lily is looking at herself in the mirror. On the other side of the mirror is Lily’s Reflection, who mirrors her every move.)

Adam: The Beatles sang it best, the way I feel:
(sings) Who knows how long I loved you?
You know I love you still?
Will I wait a lonely lifetime?
If you want me to, I will.

(Adam turns, walks to the couch and sits and watches Lily)

Lily: Adam, look at my reflection. Doesn’t it look strange to you? Like it’s me, but not really.

Adam: What do you mean?

Lily: Have you heard about that guy who hurt his head and recognized his mother and father but thought they were identical impostors? It’s sort of like that.

Adam: Your reflection is an identical impostor?

Lily: It doesn’t feel like me.

Adam: How do you know? Have you touched it?

(Lily turns and looks at Adam and smiles)

Lily: You have a point.

(She reaches out and touches the mirror. She and her Reflection are touching hands. Lily turns to Adam)

Lily: Nope. Doesn’t feel like me at all. Feels like gla . . .

(The Reflection grabs her wrist and pulls her into the mirror. Adam leaps to his feet and goes up to the mirror, but stops short, not knowing what to do. Lily and her Reflection struggle on the other side of the mirror as the Reflection tries to drag her offstage)

Lily: Help! Help! Oh my God! What the . . . ! Help me! Help me! Adam! Please! Help me!

(Lily screams as she is pulled offstage. Adam is frozen where he stands, staring open-mouthed, through the mirror. After a second of silence, Lily comes running back onstage toward the mirror. She is chased by her Reflection, who is now an eagle-winged Harpy)

Lily: Adam! Adam!

(Lily reaches the mirror and reaches through with her arm for Adam. Before he can react, the Harpy grabs her and drags her, screaming, offstage. At the same moment, Todd the Fox steps on stage right, looks around, and smiles)

Todd: I guess you do not want her all that bad –
If I were you I would be mad –
Or was she just a fad?
How sad. How sad.
Too bad.

(Todd runs off stage right)

Adam: I can’t believe what I just saw. My love for Lily’s not a fad! What just happened? Did I see . . . ? What was that thing that grabbed her?

(Adam stops and stares at the mirror for a second)

Adam: I have to go through.

(Adam cautiously places his hand on the mirror, and his hand slips through to the other side. He cautiously steps across. When he is standing on the other side, the lights go dark)

Scene 3

(The furniture is gone. The mirror is at the far left side of the stage, and Adam is standing to its right, “behind” it. Nothing else is onstage but a layer of fog. Three women in long black robes – the Norns – appear stage right and slowly walk to the center of the stage. Adam approaches)

Adam: What kind of place is this? What’s with these weird women? I don’t even know which way to go. Perhaps these women can at least tell me where I’m at. Maybe they even know what happened to Lily.

Norn 1: You were Adam, born too late. You
Always live in guilt. Your fate through
The Norns you see here will be told –
And all we tell you shall unfold.

Norn 2: You speak my lines my sister, dear –
The past and present must be clear.

Adam: Where am I?

Norn 2: With words like that he won’t go far.
Should we just keep him in a jar
And keep him safe from everything?
You can’t expect a crow to sing.

Norn 1: I know his past and what he was . . .

Norn 2: I know his present, what he does . . .

Norn 3: I know his future; do not fear –
If he survives, strength will appear.

Adam: If I survive? If I survive what?

Norn 1: What you went through in your youth made
You come here to see us. Dark shade
Followed you your whole life, silent.

Norn 2: But now you have to face the violent
Abyss that wants to take your soul
And torch it like a lump of coal.

Adam: I don’t know what you’ve said to me –
Your riddles make no sense. Be clear.

Norn 3: You see, you see – he will be free.
He’ll blossom like the cherry tree.

(Norn 3 produces an orchid flower from beneath her robe and hands it to Adam)

Norn 2: You have to take this. Do not lose

Norn 3: It ‘til it must be lost. You’ll choose
The time when you won’t choose to please
The dangerous dark choppy seas.

(Adam takes the orchid and looks at it)

Norn 3: It will protect you ‘til it can’t –

Norn 2: It’s more than just a pretty plant.

Norn 1: It’s everything that drove your past.

Norn 2: It makes you want what’s loose and fast.

Norn 3: But you will trade it for a flower
That has within it much more power.

(Norn 1 and Norn 2 exit stage left. Norn 3 exits stage right. Adam follows Norn 3 a few steps, but is stopped by Todd the Fox, who runs onstage and begins taunting Adam, running around him as he speaks)

Todd: Unhand
The flower. Stand
Just where you are. You’ll land
In trouble if you dare demand
What can’t be yours. Come on. You’re far too bland
For such a girl. Just understand
That she won’t take the band
Of love, so grand
You’ve planned.

Adam: Why are you taunting me, you crazy fox?
Why should you care about my love for her?

(Lily screams offstage)

Adam: I cannot waste my time like this with Norns
And crazy rhyming foxes. I have got
To find my Lily. I must get her out
Of here. Be gone, you stupid fox.

(Adam kicks at Todd, who runs offstage)

Adam: I have
To go before . . . before I don’t know what . . .
But what I’ve seen of here, it can’t be good.

(Adam runs off stage right, in the direction of the scream. The curtain closes)
End Act I

Act II

(The Bard steps out from behind the closed curtain and stands in front of it, center stage)

Bard: Oh gentle Muses, please return to me so I
Can sing once more of Lily’s plight and Adam’s flight
To find the one he loves so dear so he can keep
Her safe. Her harpy-double took her off and now
Good Adam must set forth to find her in this place
So alien and strange. A land of fairy-folk
And gnomes, good knights and Laméd Wufniks, introduced
To Adam by fair Proteus who calls himself
By Peter. Adam needs this rock to stand upon
If he’s to make it out of mirror-land alive.

(The Bard gestures with his hand and the curtain opens. The Bard backs off the stage, leading the opening curtain)

Scene 1

(The stage is full of Fairies, who all look like Lily. They all have fairy wings on their backs. All of them are screaming. Adam rushes in stage left, frantic)

Adam: What’s wrong? What’s wrong? I’m here! I’m here!

(The Fairies all stop screaming and speak with one voice. The Fairies will always speak with one voice except when each one speaks in individual words)

Fairies: And who are you that you are here? There’s nothing wrong.

Adam: Then why are you all screaming?

Fairies: Scream therapy. It helps us explore our feelings, and it’s a wonderful shared experience.

Adam: You scared me half to death. I thought that you were Lily.

Fairies: How lovely you thought that we were lilies. We didn’t know that lilies screamed.

Adam: Not lilies. Lily. My love. A harpy took her and now I’m trying to find her.

Fairies: How terrible! You poor, poor man! What does she look like? We’d love to help.

Adam: She looks like every one of you.

Fairies: So many bodies and so many faces!

Adam: No, I meant like each of you.

Fairies: Oh. How beautiful she must be.

Adam: You have to stop. I don’t understand a thing you’re saying. All your words run together. Please, just one of you at a time.

Fairy 1: We’re

Fairy 2: sorry.

Fairy 3: Maybe

Fairy 4: this

Fairy 5: will

Fairy 6: help.

Fairy 7: We

Fairy 8: haven’t

Fairy 9: seen

Fairy 10: a

Fairy 11: harpy

Fairy 12: fly

Fairy 13: by

Fairy 14: with

Fairy 15: a

Fairy 16: woman

Fairy 17: who

Fairy 18: looks

Fairy 19: like

Fairy 20: each

Fairy 21: of

Fairy 22: us.

Fairy 23: Maybe

Fairy 24: Peter

Fairy 25: can

Fairy 26: help.

Adam: That doesn’t help at all. I’d rather hear you unified.

Fairies: As you wish. We’ll accept whatever you want.

Adam: Have you seen Lily?

Fairies: Where is Peter? He can help. He’s caring and enlightened and someone you can trust. He has shown us the wing-challenged can do almost as much as those with wings. Oh Peter! Peter! Where have you gone? We need you to help this man find the love he lost. What better thing could you have to do than that? Oh, Peter!

(Peter appears onstage)

Fairies: There he is. Peter knows and Peter’s wise. Peter will tell you what to do.

Peter: You have the orchid with you still? I can
Not help you if you are forgetful. God
Helps those who help themselves – and who am I
To better God? So, show me that you have it.

(Adam shows Peter the orchid)

Adam: I don’t know how you know my name, but I . . .

Peter: Your name is known throughout this land. We’ve been
Preparing for your coming. Come with me
And I will show you Lily’s fate and yours.

Adam: Will someone tell me where I’m at? I’m lost.

Peter: The mirror-land is where you’re at. It’s rare
To have you here from over there, and we
Cross over rarely. One day, though, we will
Come to your world, and then your world will be
As changed as ours. We bring a complex gift . . .

Adam: All that I ever hear are riddles. Speak
To me so I can understand. Don’t be
Obscure. And why do all these fairies look
Like Lily? Tell me what is going on.

Fairies: We love the fact we look like Lily. Lily truly must be lovely.

(The fairies join hands and form a circle around Adam and Peter and slowly dance around them)

Fairies: You wonder where you are tonight? We say it all depends. From whose perspective do you wish to see? Lily, Peter, you, and we all see such different things. How can we know, how can we grow? We’ll sacrifice ourselves to make sure everyone is happy here. The sun is shining on your face and turning rain to bows the colors of bright summer fields. The pronghorn leap, coyotes howl and changeless nature makes the ring spring forth that’s dancing ‘round you both.

Peter: I’ll have to take you to the gnome. He buys
And sells most anything, and knows a lot
As well. I’m sure the gnome can help us both.

Fairies: The gnome? Why do you have to see the gnome? He’s greedy and uncouth.

Peter: We’ll likely have to pay him something. Have
You anything to pay? Or even trade?

Adam: I only have this orchid here. I came
Without a single thing. I didn’t know
What I was getting into when I came.

Peter: Perhaps the fairies have something the gnome
Would want. My fairies, could you help this man?

(The fairies stop dancing and the ring breaks apart)

Fairies: Oh Peter, Peter, how can you dare ask a thing like that? You know we’ll share all that we have to help someone like him, the poor wing-challenged thing. I know! A box of good intentions!

Peter: The gnome will never go for that. You know
He only likes results. Intentions just
Won’t do for him. Do you have something else?

Fairies: Oh! That gnome is so annoying. Good intentions are good enough for us. Perhaps he’d like some harmony.

Peter: He only takes that with his music, dears.
It’s competition that’s his game. What else?

Fairies: He only wants what he can touch. Here. Give him money, then. Some fairy money will buy you what you want from him.

(Each fairy produces some paper money and hands what they have to Peter. He collects it all and hands it to Adam)

Adam: Oh, thank you, ladies, for your gracious help
And all your generosity. I hope
The gnome can help me find my love again.

Peter: Most likely he will take us to the knights
And to the Laméd Wufnik on the mountain.

Fairies: Oh! They’re worse, far worse than the gnome. The gnome exploits the poor old dwarves and trolls, but the knights and Wufnik want to make the trolls believe in silly things and, worse, they tell them they’re to blame for who and what they are.

Peter: Well, nonetheless, we may not have a choice.

Adam: A gnome? A Laméd Wufnik? Knights? Please tell
Me who or what these strange things are. And trolls?

Peter: These things and more will be revealed. Be sure
And patient. Most of all, you must be brave.

Adam: I’m brave. What do you think brought me in here?

Peter: Stupidity and love. Don’t fool yourself.
But you will soon be brave, my friend. Just come
With me. We cannot linger here. We have
To go if you are going to achieve
Your goal. Let’s hope we find the gnome and he
Can tell us what we need to know. Let’s go.

Fairies: Good-bye. Good luck. We wish you well.

(Adam follows Peter off stage right)

Fairies: Okay everyone. On the count of three. One. Two. Three!

(All the Fairies scream. The lights go down. The Fairies stop screaming when it’s dark)

Scene 2

(The curtain opens on a well-dressed , obviously wealthy Gnome watching the Dwarves he employs digging in the earth with shovels and pick-axes. All wear beards)

Gnome: Work hard, work hard my employees –
There’s gold in that there hill.
I smelled the metal on the breeze
And here I feel its chill.

(The Gnome looks around, annoyed)

Gnome: Now where’s that cook I hired at?
I have to keep these dwarves
Well-fed and paid, ‘cause I know that
It’s here or else the wharves –
And they can work most any place –
Look how they work for me.
If he’s not here by lunch he’ll face
Not payment, but a fee.

(A Dwarf runs onstage pushing a cart. Bowls and spoons are rattling on top. None of the diggers look up from their work)

Cook: I’m here, I’m here. Looks like I made it just
In time. I had to buy some onions and
You know us dwarves can’t eat without them. Rust
Was on my serving spoon, and not a hand
Was raised to help me out. I’d fire them all
If they weren’t all my kids. But now I’m here
And if you want at any time just call
The men and they can eat and drop their gear.

Gnome: I almost thought to fire you –
It’s time for lunch, you know.
Now let me call out for the crew.
(The Gnome calls out loudly, so the workers can all hear)
It’s time for lunch! Let’s go!

(The dwarves drop their equipment and shuffle toward the wagon, tired from the day’s work. The Cook serves them. When they get their bowls of food and drinks, they sit on the floor and eat. As this continues, Adam and Peter enter stage left)

Gnome: Good Peter! How are you? And who
Is this young man you have?
I’ve never seen a man so blue –
I hope I have the salve.

Peter: You’re who we came to see – and, as it turns
Out, for that very reason. Adam here
Has lost his love and we had hoped you’d seen
Her. Tell us that you have and give us hope.

Gnome: A girl came through here that I bought
And sold. I hope you don’t
Mean her. Some women sold her, thought
I’d like her. And, well, won’t
You know, a troll came by and saw
The girl and wanted her.
I sold her, cage and all. I’d draw
Her, but my hand’s not sure.

Adam: You sold her? Lily’s not a slave!

Gnome: A slave? She’s not a gnome
Or dwarf. Good man, I’d rather shave
Off profits than go home
A slaver. No offense, but she
Was only human. I
Bought her as valid property.

Adam: I think I’m going to cry.

Peter: Not all is lost. (To the Gnome) Just tell us whom you sold
Her to. Or, better, show the way. We brought
Some cash to pay you with. Would you do that?

Adam: And if you had a chance would you
Sell me if someone came
Along and wanted me? Or do
You have, you gnome, no shame?

Gnome: Well, I don’t own you. You are free.
But she was in a cage.
And since you have insulted me
I should just show my rage
And let you find her on your own
You stupid little brat –
You don’t know where that bird has flown
Or where the troll lives at.

Peter: He’s rash and learning, far too young. But pay
Attention to the cash and let it speak
For him. Again, we’ll pay you for your help.

(Adam presents the Gnome the cash, and shows him the orchid he carries)

Gnome: I see what you are thinking with.
That does explain a lot.
Oh, fairy dollars, sinking with
Each second. All you got?

(Adam nods)

Gnome: That cash has lost its value since
You got it from those girls.
I should be turned into a prince
And showered with white pearls
For taking it from you to take
You to the troll to get
Your darling back. So let us shake
Before I go in debt.

(The Gnome takes the money and shakes Adam’s hand and Peter’s hand. The Gnome counts the money and shakes his head)

Adam: Well, thank you, sir, for taking us
To get my Lily back.

Gnome: This money makes me want to cuss.
No point in keeping track
Of it, for if I save it it
Will vanish – it’s no use
In time. I’ve got to go and get
It spent and let it loose.

(The Cook approaches the Gnome now that the Dwarves are all fed)

Cook: I hate to ask you for my pay, but I
Have fed your workers and it’s time for me
To go. If I could have some cash to buy
Some food, I’d be back here most happily.

(The Gnome smiles and hands the cook his cash)

Gnome: Take all of this and do be back
Tomorrow so my men
Can eat. You will not ever lack
For cash. Just be here when
I need you and I’ll make you rich –
But if you’re late or don’t
Return I’ll throw you in a ditch –
And do not think I won’t –
By opening a caterer
And restaurant just so
I’ll run you out. I’ll be a burr
That bleeds you very slow.

(The Cook nods, takes the money, runs to his cart, and leaves stage left with it. The Dwarves are waiting to be told to get back to work)

Peter: That seemed a little harsh, my friend. But let’s
Not dwell on it. We need to go. My friend
Must get his woman back, through how we’ll do
That, I don’t know. We have no cash to buy
Her back. But I am sure we’ll find a way.

Gnome: I sold her so don’t tell me what
You plan to do. I made
A sale. To steal her back would cut
Too far. To me it’s trade
That’s ethical – to steal’s too much
For me. So I don’t want
To know or even guess if such
Is that prey which you hunt.

Peter: So be it, then. Just lead the way as far
As you think that you can and still be true
To who you are. I think that Adam would
Agree. So lead us ‘til you can no more.

Adam (to Peter): I hope he leads us as he said
So we can find her safe.
I think I’d die if she were dead
Or withered to a waif.

(The Gnome turns to the Dwarves)

Gnome: Now dwarves, it’s time to get to work –
I’ll have to step away.
I trust that none of you will shirk
Your labor for the day.
(The Gnome turns to Adam and Peter)
Well, let’s get going. If we must
We’ll stop to see the knights
And they can lead you through, I trust
To all of your delights.
But be forewarned, they will expect
A sacrifice from you –
You’ll have to join up with their sect –
They’ll test if you are true.

Peter: The knights are very strict, but noble men.
But if we’re lucky we will see an old,
Old homeless man, the Laméd Wufnik, who
In life and prayer justifies to God
The lives of men. But you must never tell
Them that a Laméd Wufnik’s what they are
Or else they’ll die, and then they’ll have to be
Replaced. And who can justify to God
The lives of men? Can you? So do be careful.

Adam: I think that I will be prepared.
I have my orchid now –
And even after what you shared,
I’m ready – that’s my vow.

Peter: Then let’s set off. It’s time for us to go.

(The Gnome nods and leads Adam and Peter off stage right. The Dwarves continue working as the lights go down)

Scene 3

(Three Angels, three Knights, and a Laméd Wufnik are in front of a temple. The Laméd Wufnik is lying on the steps, from which he never moves. The Angels are to his right, the Knights are to his left and have shields bearing fleur-de-lys)

Wufnik: Forgive us all! Forgive the one who comes, oh our good Lord,
Because he knows not why his true heart drums, oh our good Lord.
The gift he is and was and will be given comes from you,
And never will be heard without your strums, oh our good Lord.

Angel 1: The one who comes is chosen for a gift –
Although he doesn’t know what he’s here for
Or that he’s chosen – one whom we adore
In Heaven because he can heal the rift
In language and in music. He will lift
Up man again in glory from the poor
Enshadowed places he made on the floor
Of the dank dungeon that they made bereft
Of life and love and all we know is good.
He’s been anointed so the beautiful
Will be seen once again. But first he must
Be sent to Hell to get his gift. How could
He come to see the gift as wonderful,
Appreciate it lest he’s turned to dust?

Wufnik: I hear him coming down the road. Am I prepared to see
The one who’s given this great gift? We’re bums, oh our good Lord.

Knight: He’s but a man my dear good man – and you’re
A holy man – the holiest I’m sure.

Wufnik: I am not worthy of this man, to touch the hem of his
Clean garment, or to only eat his crumbs, oh our good Lord.

(Adam, Peter, and the Gnome enter stage left)

Wufnik: Are you the one they called “Anointed”? I bless you!
Are you the one they called “Twice-born”? We cry, “Bless you!”

Adam: Is that old man speaking to me?
What strange, strange words the old
Man speaks, and who’s this pair of three?
These seven make me cold.

(Adam shivers)

Peter (to Adam): That man’s the Laméd Wufnik. Please remember
That he can never know that’s what he is.

Wufnik: Come closer so that I can see you, blesséd boy.
You are the one who’s promised us: we sigh, “Bless you.”
I can’t believe I’ve lived to see this blesséd day.
You are the one whose words will lift us high. Bless you.

Adam: I find your words confusing. I’m just here for Lily.
My heart and life is only filled with cheer for Lily.
And when I find her I will gladly go back home
So I can love and never have to fear for Lily.

Knight 2: Can you be sure that he’s the one? I look
And see a weak young man, no open book
Or iron spine – he’s nothing but a leaf
That quivers on a breeze. I have no beef
With him per se, but he will have to prove
Himself before my thoughts of him will move.

Angel 2: You shouldn’t be so harsh with him. It’s true
That he has much to prove before he’ll find
The gift he has to be a gift. He’ll bind
Himself some more before he’s born anew.

Adam: You speak as though I am not here. Just who
Do you guys think you are to say these things
Like I don’t have a choice? I don’t have strings
Attached to either wrist or to my shoe.

Angel 2: You’re off a bit. But true, you’re right, you can
To some extent do anything you want.
But anarchy is not a choice, and freedom
Is made more free by better rules. No man
Can be as free as you’ll become. The brunt
Of what you will endure’s absorbed with wisdom.

Gnome: What kind of man did I bring here?
I only thought this man
Was searching for his love. I fear
Whatever is your plan
For him. He doesn’t seem the kind
To help a soul except
The one he paid for me to find –
Much more I don’t accept.

Wufnik: You may accept or not, that’s your free will. He is the one
That we were promised. I am certain still he is the one.
The angels tell me he’s the one, and my heart tells me so
As well. Good knights, please do protect him till he is the one.

Knights: We would not go if it weren’t you who told
Us we should go. This boy is not too bold,
But maybe we can strengthen him before
He finds himself before the golden door
That’s only meant for him. So tell us, sir,
Where are we off to? I present my Fleur-
De-Lys so that I can defend both you
And who you seek. We always will be true.

All knights: We all present ourselves, our sword and shield
To you to do with as you wish. We yield.

Gnome: Will you still need me for this trip?
It seems to me these knights
Will be enough. I’d like to slip
Away, avoid all fights.

Adam: We paid for you to take us to the troll
You sold my Lily to. You are the sole
One here who knows where she and he are at –
So you will have to lead us on, and that
Is that. Or are you shirking us for what
We paid you for to run off to your hut?

Gnome: I never shirked a customer,
And you won’t be the first.
I’ll take you, then, if you prefer
To have me. (Aside) God, I’m cursed.

Peter: If you don’t mind, my friend, I’d like to stay
Behind. I have some business here with this
Good man. I need a holy man’s advice.

Adam: Stay if you must, but what will I do with-
Out you beside me? I am lost, confused,
And feel the ground beneath my feet begin
To shift. And more, I fear I’ll be abused.

Peter: I hear an independent voice emerge
Before my ears. That’s good. But still, you must
Go forth and farther, deeper still, before
You will be truly ready. Educate
Your mind until your heart believes it too.
I will be there, but for a while you will
Be forced to go alone, without a friend.

Wufnik: You must not be afraid. The worst will come in darkness
That fills your moral soul. You will turn numb in darkness.
You’ll pay a price for everything you’ve done that’s good
And well-intentioned – and you’ll pay the sum in darkness.
I would not wish an enemy to go through this
That you’ll go through – you’ll be turned deaf and dumb in darkness.

Adam: If you are trying to scare me, it’s worked.

Knight: There is no need to fear so long as we
Are here. You’ll have the shelter of our tree,
So do not frighten yourself like the deer
Who jumps at every sound that might appear.

Wufnik: Before you go I have a gift for you. This sword
Will help you to protect yourself. Judge through this sword.
The time will come, and very soon, when you will need
More than your wits. All have been safe who drew this sword.

(The Laméd Wufnik presents Adam with a sword. Adam fumbles with the orchid)

Adam: So much to carry. First an orchid, then your gift
Of this old sword. I’ll go and show the men your gift.
But where to put this orchid now? The Norns all said
It would protect me –now I’ll take even your gift.

(Adam places the orchid in the front of his shirt and bows to one knee to accept the sword. The Laméd Wufnik nods as he hands him the sword he pulled from beneath his robes. As Adam rises, Angel 1 presents a silver shield. Adam nods in silence. The Angels nod back.)

Peter: Now go and rescue Lily from the Troll.
I know I’ll see you once again real soon.

Adam: Well, thanks for all you did for me. The hole
You’ll leave cannot be filled. You were my noon-
Day sun and guide. What will I do without
You, Peter? Do you have to stay? I need
Your guidance. Can’t you see I’m full of doubt
And that I’ll never make it lest your seed
Of wisdom and encouragement ensured
Me that I would not fail and that I would
Survive this place? Oh what I have endured
Seems nothing, not compared to what I should . . .

Knight 2: Such fear will kill you here. Leave it behind
Or else your gift is not what you will find.

(Knight 3 draws his sword and strikes at Adam, who parries with the sword just given to him. Adam is surprised at his own actions)

Knight 3: You see. You’re readier than even you
Think that you are. Just trust in what is true.

(Adam smiles and composes himself)

Adam: Well, lead on, then. I guess I am more ready
Than I once thought. From now on I’ll be steady.

(The Gnome nods and leads Adam and the Knights off stage right. When they are gone, Angel 3 speaks)

Angel 3: That boy will suffer much so that he’ll grow
Into a stronger man. Just like a tree
That grows upon a windy slope will show
More strength in roots and trunk and limbs than three
That grow in perfect shelter and which snap
In any ice or breeze, that boy must take
The brutal storms that come his way to sap
His strength and wear him down. Such pain will shake
His faith and love of life, endangering
The very soul we hope won’t break, but shape
By all these trials to become the ring
Engaging man to be more than an ape.
If all these troubles do not make him mute,
He’s grow into a tree that bears much fruit.

(Todd the Fox appears stage left)

Peter: It’s good to see you, Todd. You have much work
To do to make sure that this boy will fail
To get the very thing he wants the most.

Todd: You need
Not fear. The seed
I’ve planted in that reed-
Like woman will soon do the deed.
No, Lily will not ever want to breed
With him. He can beg, even plead,
But she will never heed
His pleas. He’s freed

Peter: That’s good. (to Laméd Wufnik) Do you concur that this is best?

Wufnik: The boy must suffer. It has been decreed. His pain
Will burn away the weakness. He will need his pain.
We must return to golden standards, and the flames
Are all that purify. He must concede his pain.

(Stage goes dark)

Scene 4

(Lily is in a golden cage. A Troll is arranging her cage in the opening of his cave/home)

Troll: Oh little Lily, you are my pet for as
Long, lovely one, as I will have patience for
Such beauty here within my household.
Darkness is what I am much more used to.

(Lily, fearful, says nothing)

Troll: You’ll sing when I come back in a bit with my
Friends. Sing or else I’ll give in to hungers which
Fill trolls more than you’d want to know. I’ll
Come back soon. Do not embarrass me then.

(The Troll leaves. Lily walks around in her cage)

Lily: How strange, how strange, this place I’m in.
What did I do, what was my sin?
I’m bought and sold, commodified –
It would be better if I’d died.

Adam (from offstage): I hear her. Lily! That’s her voice. Ahead.
We have to reach her soon, before she’s dead.

(Adam leads the Gnome and Knights into the cave from stage left. They stop when they see Lily)

Lily: How sweet I roamed from field to field
And tasted all the summer’s pride,
Till I the Prince of Love beheld,
Who in the sunny beams did glide.
He showed me lilies for my hair,
And blushing roses for my brow;
He led me through his gardens fair,
Where all his golden pleasures grow.
With sweet May dews my wings were wet,
And Phoebus fired my vocal rage.
\ He caught me in his silken net,
And shut me in his golden cage.
He loves to sit and hear me sing,
Then laughing sports and plays with me –
Then stretches out my golden wing,
And mocks my loss of liberty.

Adam: I do not mock your loss of liberty –
I came here so that I could set you free.

Gnome: You have to trust your memory:
She does not quote herself.
That’s William Blake, whose sovereignty
Must stay upon the shelf.

Adam; Where is the troll that keeps you in that cage?
Where is he? I can barely hold my rage.

Gnome: Okay, I brought you here. Can I
Please go back to my mine?
If we were here to sell or buy,
Well, I would feel just fine,
But I suspect things will not turn
To commerce. Violence
Will break out soon, and that will burn
My reputation since
I sold the girl and now I’m here
With people who would steal
Her from the troll. I’d disappear,
But that does not appeal . . .

Lily: Hey! You’re the one who bought and sold
Me from the harpies and then to
The troll. I can’t believe you’re bold
Enough to be here. How dare you
Come here. I won’t be saved by some
Old gnome who sees me as a piece
Of meat. Now go away you dumb
Old gnome. I hope that you get fleas!

Gnome (to Adam): She’s charming. I can see why you
Would do all this for her.
I too would want to suffer through
What you will for this cur.

(Adam pulls his sword from his belt and points it at the Gnome)

Adam: You will take back those words – apologize
To Lily for it all. That would be wise.

(Before the Gnome can reply, the Troll enters with three friends)

Troll: Gnome! Traitor! Thief who takes back his goods once he
Sold her. You bring here knights so you’ll steal her and
Make cash again from her. You will be
Outted for what you have turned out to be.

Gnome: I sold, you bought her, fair and square –
Your beef’s with them, not me.
Just give her to them and they’ll spare
You life. Just set her free.

Knight 1: You cannot reason with a troll. The taste
Of steel will make him yield. I will not waste
My words with beings that just thirst for blood,
Not knowing theirs, when shed, will make the flood.

(The Knights all draw their swords. The Trolls draw theirs. The Knights and Adam begin to fight the Trolls. The Gnome steps away from the fight)

Gnome: There wouldn’t have to be a fight
If money were involved –
Just bring some money into sight
And everything is solved.
These people fighting would all get
Along if only they
Were meeting in the market, set
To purchase and to pay.
But when you do not want to trade,
Then violence, it seems,
Is all that’s left. I’d rather paid –
But it seems money’s memes,
When hated, bring out all the worst
In people. Coveting
What others have brings on a thirst
That won’t be quenched. We bring
The worst in everyone out when
We say that we should want
What others have, for only then
Does hatred start to hunt.
Well, I am done here. Time for me
To go back home. I’ll try
To make up for all this. I’ll see
You later, then. Good-bye.

(The Gnome runs off stage left. The Knights and Adam fight the Trolls until the Trolls are dead)

Knight 2: We are triumphant! Now just take the key,
Unlock the cage and set the woman free.

(Adam searches the Troll and finds the key. He unlocks the cage. Lily rushes out and hugs him)

Lily: You rescued me. I can’t believe
That you were here for me. I thought
The Troll would kill you or deceive
You so you also would be caught.

Adam: Trolls can’t keep me from helping or finding you.
Dark fear is not enough. I would die or else
Try death to rescue you. You have to
Know this. The truth is I love you, Lily.

Lily: I know you do, and what you’ve done
For me just proves it, that is true –
But we’re just friends, and we have fun,
And sadly, I just don’t love you.

(Before this revelation sinks in, Knight 3 grabs Adam by the arm)

Knight 3: We’d better go before we have to face
The other trolls who live around this place.

Knight 1: We can’t go back the way we came. I fear
That someone may have seen us enter here.

Knight 2: The spirit woods. The trolls would never chase
The five of us into that haunted place.

(Adam, Lily, and the Knights exist stage left. Lights go down)

Scene 5

(Lights come up. Adam, Lily, and the Knights are standing in the woods. There are several rocks and trees behind which Rock- and Tree-Spirits hide)

Lily: These woods are dark and frightening –
I wish you’d never brought me here.
I feel my heart – it’s tightening
Here in my chest. I’m filled with fear.

Adam: Fear nothing. We will keep you unharmed in these
Woods. What could harm you here? There is nothing in
Rocks, trees or flowers that could hurt you.
Knights, is there any sign that we’re followed?

Knight 1: I haven’t seen a thing alive since we
Came in these woods . . . What moved behind that tree?

(Everyone goes on guard. Lily hides behind Adam)

Knight 1: Come out and let us see just who you are.
Let’s see you. Do not think that you’ll get far.

(Chanting voices – quiet at first, but getting louder over a few seconds – come from behind every rock and tree. The Knights and Adam make a circle, backs to Lily, protected in the center, swords out and facing every direction)

Voices: A-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-

(Lights dim. Lightning flashes and thunder. A Dryad steps out from behind a tree)

Dryad: I am the elemental king, and you
Are in our woods. We ask you where you’re at
That you can threaten us. You’ll have your due
If you don’t drop your guard. Sit on the mat
Of forest leaves and lay your swords down flat
Beside you so that we will not be caught
Defending ourselves like a cornered rat –
In others’ homes you should know is from ought.

(The Knights and Adam comply)

It’s good to see that you believe I’m true
To what I say. I’m glad you trust me. That
Is good, a start. I see that you are new
To elemental woods. I’m glad you sat
So we can all come out to see and chat
With you. Just know it’s true we would have fought
If that is what you wanted, like a brat –
In others’ homes you should know is from ought.

(Tree and Rock Sprites emerge from behind their trees and rocks)

So now you see we’re many and you’re few,
And that you had no chance, just like a gnat
Against a damselfly that glitters blue
In sunlight’s beams, we would have chewed and spat
You out if we had had to fight. Your hat
In hand is how you should have come. Who taught
You such bad manners? Some old rabid bat?
In others’ homes you should know is from ought.

(The Tree and Rock Sprites approach the group, curious)

Too bad for us that none of you are fat
Or you’d have never found that which you sought
And you’d have ended up food in our vat –
In others’ homes you should know is from ought.

Adam: Then count me happy not to feed your taste
For human flesh – I think it’d be a waste
To turn us into stew for you to eat –
Though I think Lily is a tasty treat.

(Lily smacks Adam on the shoulder)

Tree Spirit 1: I’ve never seen a man like him
Up close. I’ve only seen a dim
Cold shadow going by
As other men came on a whim
Into these woods. They look so prim
And proper. Tell me why?

Rock Spirit 1: I wonder if they’re here for bad or good.
What should we do with such strange men as these?
Perhaps they’ve come to colonize our wood
And teach us all their manners, to say “Please”
And “Thank you” while we bow down on our knees.
I do not think that you will get too far,
So now you’d better tell us who you are.

Adam: My name is Adam and I’m trying to . . .

All Spirits: It’s Adam! Adam! Adam’s here.
We must prepare and make it clear
That we mean well. Oh dear! Oh dear!
We should be happy, full of cheer,
But what we’ve done fills us with fear
We’ll lose the one meant to appear
To us. We’ll sacrifice a deer
And serve him with our fresh-brewed beer
So he will know we hold him near
Our hearts. Oh Adam, please do hear.

Lily: Well, what on earth is going on?
They want to worship you. What kind
Of place is this? Am I a pawn
For something else in someone’s mind?

Dryad: Oh rise, dear Adam, we have waited long
For you to come into these woods. We’re wrong
To treat you as we did, our Lord.
We’ve waited here so we could make you strong
In soul and spirit, readying your song.
As a replacement for your sword.

(Adam, Lily and the Knights stand. Adam and the Knights sheath their swords)

Stone Spirit 2: If he is here then time will be here soon
To tell our fates as they relate to him.
Yes, they will come, enlightened by the moon.
And clothed in darkness, they appear quite dim,
Like when the moon glows only on its rim
And all is dark and shadowy. The stain
On us won’t fade unless we bring him pain.

Adam: I do not like the sound of this
My knights. Stay here and do not miss
A thing that happens here.
I came here for the bliss
Of Lily’s love and tender kiss –
I didn’t come for fear.

Norn 1 (Offstage): It does not matter why you came –
You must and will endure the flame
That we prepared for you. Now go
You knights. We’ve finished with your show
Of arms. The order that you bring
No longer fits. Chaos is king.

(The Norns appear stage right, dressed as before. The Knights bow to them and exit stage left in silence. Adam looks from the exiting Knights to the Norns and back again several times in confusion)

Norn 2: You will withstand the pain we bring –
You will endure it till you sing
Just like the cougar as it taunts
The very prey the cougar haunts.

(The Spirits grab Adam and Lily, who struggle until they realize it’s futile. When hot irons are brought, both begin to struggle again)

Norn 2: No need to struggle, girl, it’s not
For you the iron is struck hot.

(Lily stops struggling. The Spirits lift Adam’s shirt and press the irons to his flesh. He screams)

Norn 3: We do this now so you’ll endure
The pain that comes to make you pure.
Now give an iron to the girl
So she can burn him, make him curl
In pain so he will know that she
Is where his pain will always be.

Lily: I will not do that to my friend.
What kinds of awful things are you
Whose worship only has the end
Of torture. That, I’ll never do.

Norn 2: You do it or I promise you
More than you ever have gone through –
But unlike Adam, you won’t live –
No stronger promise can I give.

(Lily is handed a hot iron. She looks at it, at Adam, then presses it against his flesh. He looks at her, horrified, then screams and almost faints)

Norn 1: Enough. He never would have been
Assured he could survive this when
He loved you and you didn’t know
These were the seeds that you would sow.

Norn 3: Now take him through the golden door

(Norn 3 points stage right. Lily puts Adam’s arm over her shoulder and helps him offstage. When they are gone, Norn 3 continues)

Norn 3: He’s far too good for that dumb whore.

(Lights go down. Curtains close)

End Act II


(The Bard steps out from behind the closed curtain and stands in front of it, center stage)

Bard: A human, all too human past is left behind
And now we must descend into a lower world,
For we are more than minds, transcendent. We
Are animals as well, and chemicals, and star-
Dust atoms, purest energy of space-time folds.
As we unfold, de-densify, we seem to come
Apart. Indeed, we do, and many don’t return.
Now witness Adam come apart as he descends
Into and through each mood of time. His suffering
Has only just begun, but please don’t look away –
I ask you now to suffer with our hero. He
Will need your sympathy in order to survive.
But please don’t pity him, for who are you to think
That you are better than he is? It would not take
Too much for any one of you to fall as well.
So do not be afraid to look at Adam’s fall
And see yourself reflected in his face and soul.

Scene 1

(The Bard gestures with his hand and follows the curtain offstage as it opens to a sylvan field. Five Satyrs are dancing in the field)

Satyrs: We dance so we can have the soothing rain!
We dance so we can see the sun again!
We tiptoe on the grass,
Can’t wait to get some virgin ass –
For we don’t think that it would hurt
To roll her naked in the dirt
And make her want to come see us again!
It’s surely not a sin
To take
A lovely girl and make her shake
And dance a tango lying on her back.
What do we lack?
A girl! A girl!
One who would make us all unfurl
And stand up at attention
So we can give her our affection.

(Lily helps Adam on stage left. He is still in pain from what he endured previously)

Lily: I do not understand this place –
We came upon a golden door
Just standing all alone, no base
Or wall or anything. No floor
Or ceiling. Then I couldn’t go
Through it, just you. I went around
It, but you couldn’t. I don’t know
What’s going on or where we’re bound.

Satyr 1: Oh look! Just ask
And you’ll receive. Our task
Is now to take her for ourselves
And separate her from her clothes –
Then joy on joy as each one of us delves
Into her in the grass. Our oaths
To help each other
Make us strong – what say you, brother?

Satyr 2: A girl like that will surely break
If she is tempted by the snake.
I’m certain she
Has tasted of his fruit before.
And I am certain it’s not only me –
She looks like she has played the whore
With many boyfriends in
The past. I’m sure that we will win . . .

(Adam looks up, furious)

Adam: How dare you say these things of her –
I will not take it sir.
I’ll fight you all
Until I see all of you fall
If that is what it takes for you to see
Respect for her eternally.

(The Satyrs go up to them. Two grab Lily as one, Satyr 3, pushes Adam to the ground)

Satyr 3: My weakened friend
We’d know a whore because we spend
All of our time with them.
Just look how high her dress’s hem
Is, high above her knees.
I know that she’ll soon be down begging, “please”
To each of us.
Why, she would take on a whole bus
Of men.
You’ve no idea just where she’s been.

Lily: Now look, I won’t deny my past –
And Adam knows a bit of it –
But could a whore name every last
Man she has been with? You can sit
And I will let you know the men
That I have been with and then you
Can judge yourself if I have been
A whore, if what they say is true.

Satyr 4: Oh good! I cannot wait to hear
The list of all that came before we will. Don’t leer
At all the names.
Like Mike and Jonah, Mark and James.

(As Lily lists the names of all the men she’s had sex with, Adam looks more and more horrified)

Lily: I’ve had a Mike – no, there were three –
A Jonah, Mark, and James. A Jim –
No, two – six Johns. Now let me see . . .
A Jack, a Carlos, and a Tim.
Then there’s Jose and four named Bill,
Three Williams and an Adam too –
Not you, of course – and then there’s Will,
A Jackson, Jesse, Rick, and Drew.

Satyr 5: You’ve barely covered this past year.
We do not have all day, my dear.
Now strip for us
And don’t complain or make a fuss –
We’ll take our turn
With you, so do not spurn
Us. It is easier
To just give in to the sleazier
Side that we know that you expressed
And blessed
Those five good friends on that one day
In their apartment. Play
With us, give as you played with them back then –
We’ll satisfy just like those men.

Lily: It doesn’t matter what I did,
It doesn’t mean that you can take
Me as you wish. Now kindly rid
Yourselves of thoughts that you can make
Me do those things with you because
You proved that I like having sex.
You better know that there are laws
Against attempts at forcing sex.

Satyr 1: The law is us
So don’t put up a fuss.
We’ll do with you just as we wish
And you’ll take what we dish
Out. You will take
Us all on if we like, and we will make
You learn to see
Us as your source of ecstasy.

(Adam stands and draws his sword)

Adam: Get back
Or else I will attack
And turn you into eunichs
So you’ll be left all wearing tunics
So you can hide your shame –
And you will only have yourselves to blame.

(The Satyrs cower together, but don’t release Lily)

Satyr 2: Now let’s calm down. Please don’t get hasty.
This tasty
And all too eager girl
Should not cause you to leap and hurl
Yourself at us.
This wide and cavernous
Young slut
I’m sure would offer us the rut
We seek if you weren’t here.
But let us make it clear
That we won’t fight –
In fact, I’m certain that we’d feel the bite
Of an infection
Once each of us made our injection.

(Lily is shoved away from them toward Adam. She runs to Adam for his protection)

Adam: Now go
And make it fast, not slow.
I will not put
Up with your insults any more. My foot
Will do to each of you
What you just threatened now to do
To her. I will
Not listen to your insults, either. I will kill
The next who dares to say
One more bad thing about this girl today.

Satyr 3: Why should we go? This is our land.
Why don’t you take your stand
In other places and just leave
And maybe after Steve
And Nick and Jason, she will let you have a turn.
I hope it doesn’t burn.

Lily: Come on, let’s go and leave this place.
I do not want to have to face
These stupid creatures any more,
Who have no room to call me “whore.”

Satyr 4: Oh, look, she’s trying now
To change a sow
Into an angel. Well, good luck!
Too bad. We know you like to . . .

Lily: Shut up! Oh, Adam, shut them up –
I cannot take their scorn and taunts.
They’re handing me a bitter cup,
A past of mine that always haunts
Me everywhere I go. Please shut
Them up, please let us leave before
I have to hear them call me “slut”
Again. I won’t be called a whore!

Adam: Get back and do not let me hear
You say a thing that brings a tear
Into her eyes.
You better learn to prize
Your lives more than you do.
Another word, and I will run you through.

(Adam walks with Lily across the stage, sword drawn and ready. The Satyrs move as a group to keep away from him)

Satyr 5: Well, go. Just go.
I guess you’ll never know
How Lily really is. You will not hear
The truth because you fear
That your illusions will be gone
And you’ll see that you’re just a pawn
Of all her teasing.
No pleasing
A slutty girl like that,
A spoiled rotten little brat.

(Adam lifts his sword and all the Satyrs cringe. He shakes his head and leads Lily off stage right. When they’re gone, the Satyrs laugh and start to dance again)

Satyrs: We dance so we can have the soothing rain!
We dance so we can see the sun again!
We tiptoe on the grass,
Can’t wait to get some virgin ass –
For we don’t think that it would hurt
To roll her naked in the dirt
And make her want to come see us again!
It’s surely not a sin
To take
A lovely girl and make her shake
And dance a tango lying on her back.
What do we lack?
A girl! A girl!
One who would make us all unfurl
And stand up at attention
So we can give her our affection.

(Lights go down)

Scene 2

(Lights come up. Todd the Fox, a Deer, a Cougar, a Wolf, and a Bison are on stage with trees, grass, and flowers. A boat, called Acheron, is at the far right end of the stage)

Todd: It’s might
That rules, not right
In woods like these. You fight
Or turn your tail in rapid flight –
The choices here are either black or white.
We’re lurking here both day and night –
Some will run at the light
Of man; some bite
On sight.

(Todd runs off stage right. The animals hide between the trees. Adam and Lily enter stage left; their Doubles enter stage right. The Doubles are dressed in identical clothes of opposite colors)

Lily and Double: Do you know where we’re going now?
I’m scared of what may happen next.
I wish that you could tell me how
We could escape this place. I’d text
Or call but I don’t have my phone,
And I don’t know what I would tell
Someone where I am at. I’ve flown
With harpies and been in a cell
And I’ve been bought and sold. Please take
Me home, away from all this Hell –
Please take me home for goodness sake.

Adam and Double: This knowledge of you frightens
Me, Lily. It enlightens,
And yet my heart still tightens when you’re near –
The night turns light and brightens.

Adam: You’ve really been with every
Man that you named? Can it be
A possibility? Three, six, or ten
Tend to terrify me.

Adam dbl: You’ve never been with any
Man? Really, how can it be
A possibility? See, virgins do
Tend to terrify me.

Lily and dbl: Well, either you’ll get over it
Or . . . I don’t know what to tell you.
So either throw a little fit
Or else accept that it is true.

(Adam and Lily look across the stage and are startled to see their Doubles)

Adam: Is that myself I see here?
Another you as well. Dear.
Now what is going on? Nearby I see
Something. Boats, sea, dark fear.

Adam dbl: I see a me – the pansy
Of me. Another Lily
Is with him. I should quickly trade the one
With me for the slutty . . .

Lily dbl: How could you say that? Don’t you know
I love you? Here I fell for you
And all you ever seem to show
Me is contempt for being true.

Adam: Would everyone stop calling
The one I love a slut! Sing
Her praises. It is taxing hearing her
Hailed a whore unceasing.

Adam dbl: Come trade with me. It’s likely
You’ll like her better. Lonely
Virgins like yourself should only be with
Women like this Lily.

Lily (to Adam): I wish that you were more like him –
I’m sure our friendship soon would turn
Into the love you want. Your prim
And proper ways don’t make me burned
Up with desire in the way
Your double opposite makes me.
With him I’d quickly toss away
My clothes. With him I would be free
To be myself. You put me high
Up on a pedestal. I don’t
Belong up there. I don’t know why
You won’t see me for me. You won’t
Love me for who I truly am
And that is why I won’t love you.
You want a woman who’s a lamb –
And that is why our friendship’s through.

(Lily runs over to Adam’s Double)

Lily dbl: You get away from him, you slut.
This Adam here is mine. He’s yours.

Lily: He’d be yours if you chose to rut
With him like all his other whores.

Lily dbl: Like you, you mean. Now get away –
This man is mine and mine alone.

Lily: You lost him on the very day
You wouldn’t let him hear you moan.

(Lily grabs her Double by the arm and flings her toward Adam. She falls at Adam’s feet)

Lily: You want a man to worship you.
Well, that one will. So go with him.
I do not care if I get through
This place to home. I think it’s slim
To none that he would get me there –
I’d rather take my chances on
A man like this, a man who’d share
Himself with me. Good-bye. I’m gone.

(Lily leaves with Adam’s Double, stage right, walking right past Adam and Lily’s Double, still on the ground)

Lily dbl: I do not love you, though you look
Like him. Please do not make me stay.
I could not bear if he forsook
Me even for a single day.

(Lily’s double stands and runs after Adam’s double and Lily, stage right)

Adam: And now I am alone in
These woods to face my darkest sin
Of . . . what? I thought that I’d win Lily’s heart.
Heaven feels so foreign.

(The animals slowly step out from among the trees)

Deer: Adam, take the small boat that you see there floating – it waits for you.

Wolf: Fear engulfs you until you go embark out on the sea. Now go.

Bison: Thirst and hunger will take tolls on your soul. Take this here boat and go.

Cougar: Sex, desire are dark friends of the strong. Seek out the truth and know.

Adam: Animals speak to me. Madness is here; clearly I’ve gone insane.

(Adam wanders past the animals and gets into the boat. Lights go down)

Scene 3

(Lights come up. Adam is sitting in the boat. The water is completely calm. It is dark. Sea Nymphs appear from stage left and right and dance around the boat.)

Nymphs: In the oceans we swim, in the oceans we swim.
In the boat is a man and we do not know him.
Has he come to the sea so that he can be free
In his soul and his mind, and we hope he will find
All the things that he’s looking for. Floating away,
We are sure that he’ll come to the shore where he’ll stay.

Adam: I am lost and adrift and I don’t have a clue
What to do. I am lost without her and the love
That I felt. I am nothing, no, nothing, unless
I feel love for that woman, my Lily, my love.
I am nothing and nobody, lost on the sea,
And a nothing and nobody cannot be free.

Nymph 1: Oh the poor little man lost his love. How did she
Become lost? Where’d she go? What is wrong? Why’d you flee?

Adam: She was lost when I loved her, and I didn’t know.
She is off with some lover who won’t love her back.
I am selfish and think it’s my job to save her.
I am here because there cannot be room for me
In her life and I see that I ruined it all.

Nymph 2: Oh the poor little man. How you float on the sea
Because you fell in love with a woman who could
Never love you as you would love her. Is that true?

Adam: Because I fell in love with a woman who could
Never love herself. I’m just a selfish young man
And I didn’t love Lily or even myself.
I just floated myself on an image of love –
I just loved the idea of love and I put
My false love in the frame and I claimed that she was
A fine artwork, but all that she was was a fake,
A bad duplicate that I had painted myself.
I’m a plagiarist. Love can’t be copied like that.

Nymph 3: Oh the poor little man. He’s the false prophet who
We are told would be here. The false prophet of love
Is now here on the sea in a boat and now we
Must decide what to do with this man who loves love.

Nymph 4: He loves no one but love and will always find fault
In a woman who’s real and won’t fit his ideal.
He’s turned love into porn and no woman can live
Up to porn-star ideals. And in truth they’re all hurt
And they’re damaged, no woman you really would want.

Adam: I can beat myself up myself without your help –
I don’t need to hear preaching from you. I can do
This just fine to myself. Now please go so that I
Can just suffer alone in this boat till I die.

Nymph 5: He is selfish in suffering just as in love
And he thinks that it’s all about him. Well, it’s not.

Nymph 1: He will have to break down until he comes to see
That his self-obsessed world isn’t all that there is.

Nymph 2: You see, there is a storm that is coming for you.

Nymph 3: So just stop with your whining and brace for the storm.

Nymph 4: Don’t be fooled by the calm that you have at this time.

Nymph 5: For the storm, it will come, and you’ll pay for your crime.

Adam: And just what is my crime? That I loved her? That she
Was not worthy of love, of my life that I had?
That I loved such a woman who’d never love me?
that I loved such a whore as she turned out to be?
And just why should that be such a crime so that I
Have to suffer and face the abyss, be destroyed?

Nymphs: Now just calm yourself down, for the storm’s not here yet.
You will suffer and yet we know you won’t regret
That you suffered for her and you’re not where you were
When you’ve reached the abyss and come out with the kiss
Of the gift that is meant for the world, and is sent
Through the vessel of you. So just lie yourself down
And prepare for the storm that will come – so now, drown!

(The Nymphs reach out, grab Adam by the arms and shoulders, and press him down into the bottom of the boat. Adam lies down in the boat. The Nymphs exist stage left and right. Thunder, lightning. Lights go down)

Scene 4

(Lights come up. It is dark. Adam is standing on the shore of an island beside his boat. On the shore are stone statues of men scattered about. Lightning and thunder)

Adam: I am thankful this island of calm has appeared
At the moment the storm started up. I had feared
That the storm would have swamped that small boat and that I
Would have drowned or that lightning would strike and I’d die.

(Lightning and thunder. Adam looks around)

Adam: All these statues of men look so real and afraid.

(Lightning and thunder. Adam draws his sword and lifts his shield)

Adam: There is something real strange on this island. Who made
All these statues? It was a most delicate hand
That had carved all these men in such detail. They stand
With their backs to the sea. Why is that? Now the hair
On my arms prickle up – why is that? Who is there?

(A Basilisk appears stage right. It looks like a cross between a snake and a dragon)

Basilisk: Who dares disembark? Boy, you’ll die dry as
These stone statues which wait until time ends.

(Lightning and thunder. Adam lifts his sword hand to wipe his brow)

Adam: It’s hot. Hell-like heat hammers down, drenching
My brow. Basilisk. Lightning. Stone statues.
I can’t catch his eyes else I’ll make marble
My home here, a stone statue for time timeless.

(Lightning and thunder. The Basilisk lurches for Adam. Adam raises his shield to protect himself. Lightning. The Basilisk sees his reflection and turns to stone. Thunder. Adam shakes, waiting for the Basilisk to hit his shield)

Adam: How on earth can I look so that I will then know
If he’s gone or he’s there as a trick so I’ll show
Him my eyes and I’ll die, turned to stone like these men?
But I don’t hear a thing – will he lurch once again?

(The statues turn to men)

Man 1: Where is the monster? You must look away!
No, wait. What happened here? You saved the day,
My boy. The basilisk is turned to stone
And we are all returned to flesh and bone.

Adam: What brought you here and when’d you come? I came
By accident and saw you here, each turned
To stone. Did time for you just stop and go?

Man 2: I cannot speak for them, but probably,
Like me, they came to kill the basilisk.

Adam: What kind of place is this? It’s hot like Hell
Must be. Why would you want to come down here
To kill the basilisk? It makes no sense
To risk your life to try to kill that thing.

(Lightning and thunder)

Man 3: We came to kill it knowing that we’d fail.

Man 4: We did it on the likelihood that you
Would come and rescue us by killing it.

Adam: I’d have thought it unlikely that I’d have come here –
You don’t know what a coward I am, full of fear.

Man 5: And that is why we waited all this time
For you – it takes a warrior to rhyme.

(The men draw their swords and attack Adam. Adam fights back, blocking with his shield)

Adam: Why fight me? I just rescued you. This makes
No sense. My arm! My leg! I’m bleeding, stabbed.

Men: You basilisk, die. You basilisk, die.

(Adam kills Man 5)

Adam: You’re speaking nonsense. None of this makes sense.

Men: We have to kill the sea nymph. You must die!

(Adam kills Man 4)

Adam: What’s wrong with you? Why don’t you make some sense?

Men: We’ll kill you both. We must kill both of you.

Adam: There’s only one of me. It seems enough.

(Adam kills Man 3)

Men: You sensuous satyr must die, must die!

Adam: You madmen all must die. You’re killing me.

(Adam swipes at the two men left and kills them both with the one swipe)

Adam: Am I going insane? They attacked me for no
Understandable reason at all, that I know.
And they blabbered and blabbered and didn’t make sense.
Now I’m feeling all woozy and getting confused.

(Adam passes out on the sand. Lightning and thunder. Lightning and thunder. Earth Nymphs appear stage right)

Nymphs: Corpses, corpses got to go.
Take them, pile them in the boat.
Let them go and let them float.
Corpses, corpses got to go.

(The Nymphs pile the bodies in the boat, placing Adam on the top, and push the boat out to sea)

Nymphs: Corpses, corpses go to go –
Rot upon the choppy seas –
Please be gone, oh be gone please –
Corpses, corpses got to go.

(Lightning and thunder. Lights go down)

Scene 5

(Lights come up. It is dark. Lightning and thunder. Adam is lying on top of the bodies in the boat. The seas are choppy. A shadow looms overhead. It is the Dragon. Adam sits up, bleeding and confused)

Adam: Bleeding. Death-smell brine. Sulfur. Where could . . . Hot. It this salty taste sweat, tears, the sea? Blood? I think I’m going to throw up. Head throbs. God, it’s hot. How can it be so dry in the sea? I am so thirsty. “Water, water everywhere and not a drop to drink.” Coleridge. What was my sin? Albatross? Will I wear Lily around my neck for life?

(Flames leap up around the boat on the surface of the sea)

Adam: What kind of madness is this?

(The Dragon’s shadow sharpens in the background)

Dragon: Quiet you whining impotent. You sicken me. Die and let time take
Back all you took from her. Die so we’ll live without hearing you whine, wretch.

Adam: What do you know of my pain? Back in your cave or your lair,
I don’t care where you came from. What do you know of my pain?

Dragon: Pain? What a whining, pathetic, sad wimp you are. I’ll show you pain. Hell
Fire is what you deserve. If you want pain, you’ll have pain.

(Adam writhes in pain)

Adam: Pain! Oh, the heat of the flames are too much! Someone help me, oh help! Help!
Fire, the fire, it burns. Heat is unbinding me. Help!

Dragon: Fire will burn the impurities from your weak soul or will kill you.
Death should be preferable over the sad life you have.

(Adam faints from the heat and pain. The Norns appear stage right and approach the boat)

Norn 1: His past has brought him here to die.
The whiny coward – there he’ll lie.

Norn 2: His present death would be a shame
If he would ever be the same.

Norn 3: His death is only a beginning –
He has to learn from all his sinning.
These corpses all will have to go –
Just let the fire burn them slow.

(The Norns drag all the corpses out of the boat, leaving them around the boat. They drag Adam through the fire, chanting)

Norns: Fire, fire, burn him up, you
Flames must burn this weak old body.
Leave a body that’s reborn, new
Body, soul, and spirit living.

(The Norns drag Adam’s body back into the boat. The flames die down. Adam sits up suddenly, gasping)

Adam: Lily! Lily! Where’s my love at?

Norn 2: Kill him once again. He isn’t
Purified quite yet. Now kill him.

(The flames shoot back up)

Adam: Oh God! The pain, the fiery pain! Why do I have to
Suffer like this? Why are you killing me?

Norn 1: We’re killing you because the man
You were was useless. You must ban
Him from the world and let a new
And better man come out and through.

Dragon: Die you sad wretch, you pathetic old corpse of a man. You aren’t worth life,
Coward. Take death and the pain you deserve. You need pain. Love the hot death.

(The Norns grab Adam and drag him, kicking and screaming through the flames. When he stops struggling and goes limp, they put him back in the boat)

Norn 3: He must become a smoldering
Charcoal instead of flaming wood
If he’s to be worth anything,
If he’s to be both true and good.

Dragon: Airless, intense are these flames. Smoldering coals he’ll become
Once I am finished with him. Golden and hot he will burn.

Norn 2: We’re grateful for the flames which kill
The weakness in him. Leave the ill
Old life behind and take ahold
Of life and live a life that’s bold.

(Lights go down. Curtains close.)

End Act III


Act IV

(The Bard steps out from behind the closed curtain and stands in front of it, center stage)

Bard: Oh Muses keep on singing so that I can see
The fate of Adam, dead upon the stormy sea.
Please show to me the resurrection of this man,
His transformation into prophet, poet, king.
Please show his infant-steps – we want to see him grow,
Become the best, aristocrat of culture, art
Alive in him to make the world more beautiful.
Now witness Adam rise again, ascend through time
And all her moods, emerge to become human once
Again. The dragon fire now will fuel his soul –
The heat that kills, contained, transforms to work and life.
Dark chaos, once constrained, turned into blessed order.
The timeless turns to likelihood, observed into
Determinedness, emerging to intention, life
Becoming cultural and full of timefulness.
These transformations Adam will now have to bear
Now that he’s died to his old life, now that his soul
Is bare and open to a brand-new life, will make
Him capable of being more than he had ever
Thought possible. He now is on the path that will,
Though harder than the path he tread before, bring joy
To him – a joy he never knew was possible.

Scene 1

(The Bard gestures with his hand and follows the curtain offstage as it opens to show the boat Acheron on stormy seas. Adam is lying in the bottom of the boat. The shadow of the Dragon is present. Lightning and thunder)

Dragon: Adam, dead Adam, now rise. It is time to revive and be born. Live
Adam, and rise from the dead, prophet and poet and king.

(Adam sits up in the boat. He is no longer covered in blood, and his clothes are clean and new. The orchid is missing)

Adam: I am alive again! My first words lie:
The scales have fallen from each blinded eye
And now I see the false break from the true –
It’s coming soon – the clouds break from the blue –
I see it coming soon, a distant sigh.

(Adam stands and places his hand above his brow, looking out. Then he throws his hands in the air)

I’m disillusioned, finally. I’d die
A thousand times to feel this life. I’d try
Out anything now that I’m dead and new –
I am alive again!

(Adam slowly turns around in the boat. Lightning and thunder)

I want to leap up from this boat and fly
Into the sun and harness it. Oh, why
Did I once let myself live death? I rue . . .
Ah! No regrets! I’d let the dragon chew
Me up again just so that I could cry
I am alive again!

Dragon: Adam, your life is now given to you once again. It is now your
Life to live. Make it a much better one than it once was.
I will be here to ensure you will die once again, so be sure you
Make this new life into one which will be worth your rebirth.
Chaos is where I abide, and I’ll bring you here, back to this death, time
Torn into nothing and life killed long ago in this place.

(Lightning and thunder. Adam looks down and notices the orchid is gone)

Adam: The orchid! It is lost! The Norns told me
I had to keep it if I was to be
Kept safe. It’s gone! Oh, what will happen now?

Dragon: You do not think with the orchid alone anymore, yet you will still
Think with it soon, though your will is a much stronger one now.
Keep this that you are now feeling. It will not remain for long. Lust
Rules in you still, though you will learn now to turn it to good.
Lust as you felt was the cause of your pain, but the lust you will feel brings
Light to the world and to you. Beauty is what you will know.

(Lightning and thunder)

Adam: Oh, lion, eagle, snake and fire, high
Intelligence – all that each person seems
To fear, you have to tell me why
You chose to make me die
So I could turn my dreams
Into some strong infectious memes
That no one in this world wants to buy –
It seems like pains will flow in different streams.

Dragon: Don’t think that you can avoid living life. It is suffering. Art, truth,
People will all bring you pain; suffering cannot be lost.
Love of life cannot mean all loss of suffering. Joy lives with pain, loss,
Death, and the vigors of life. Happiness kills off all joy.
Take on the storms and then you will be free. If you try to avoid pain,
Pain will then kill you. But you know all that now. Live in joy.

(The Dragon’s shadow fades away. Adam sits in the boat, which rocks on the storm. Lightning and thunder. Lights go down)

Scene 2

(Lights come up. The boat is on an island shore. Adam is standing beside the boat Acheron. Lightning and thunder)

Adam: Thank God I found this island in the storm.
My death and my rebirth did not cure me
Of sea-sickness. It’s time I took the form
Of something new, a new identity.

(Keteh Meriri, demon lord of hot summers and midday, enters stage right, surrounded by Salamanders, fire elementals. The Salamanders dance around him)

Ketah: Welcome, Adam, to the desert of the real.
Prophesy like yours will find no welcome here.

Adam: The dragon and now you have said I am
A prophet, but I don’t know what that means.

Keteh: Don’t play me for a fool. I know you met your
Double. He who meets his double is a prophet.

(The Salamanders dance around Adam)

Salamanders: Our fire will burn you to bits
And frighten you out of your wits.
It is our goal
To torture your soul
Until we see time itself quits.

Adam: You cannot harm me, salamanders. Your
Cool flames cannot compare to dragon breath.
Had you been on the stormy seas I would
Have welcomed you as much relief and I
Would have embraced you for your cooling touch.

(Adam reaches out to touch the Salamanders, but they leap away. Keteh Meriri laughs)

Keteh: You have frightened them. They never saw someone
Reach to touch them. I’m impressed with you, my boy.

Adam: Death does not frighten me. Hades is soon to be left far behind. Hot
Flames don’t impress me. I’m free from all the fear I once had.

Salamanders: He speaks with the voice of the wyrm,
And we fear that we’ve lived up our term –
We’ll do what you want,
We’ll look and we’ll hunt,
Just please do not treat us too firm!

Keteh: Arrogance won’t serve you well. Perhaps it’s time
Salamander fire taught humility.

(More Salamanders run on stage. They surround Adam so densely he disappears. All we can hear from him are his screams)

Salamanders: Our fire will burn you to bits\
And frighten you out of your wits.
It is our goal
To torture your soul
Until Keteh Meriri says quit!

(The Salamanders dance around Adam. He screams. This last several seconds)

Keteh: Stop. Enough. Let’s see if this boy’s arrogance
Left him. He will learn humility or he’ll
Be humiliated. Either one will do.

(The Salamanders step away from Adam, who is on the ground in pain)

Keteh: Stand with tempered arrogance or I will burn
You myself. I don’t have dragon’s breath but my
Demon heat will do quite well to teach you, boy.

(Peter enters stage right)

Peter: Enough Keteh Meriri. It is time
To take him into more familiar lands.
I’ll take him, shape him, make him something good.

Adam: I thought my sufferings were done –
I thought my battles had been won.
But I’ve been brought to this –
The ground is all I have to kiss,
And now I have no place to run.

(Peter walks over to Adam and helps him up)

Peter: You’re too hard-headed; you won’t listen well –
The dragon told you – and you have to learn –
That all of life is suffering. It’s time
You learned that. Learn it now so you can grow,
For life means growth and growth is painful, boy.

(Lightning and thunder)

Adam: I don’t know why I had to go through this.
I don’t know why I had to die
Or why I had to love my love – I miss
Her still, although I feel that my
Old love for her is dead. I feel the bliss
Of something else begin to pry
Itself into my life. I’d rather have a bris
Performed on me before I’d fly
Into that woman’s arms or take her kiss.

Keteh: Strong contempt is not the opposite of love.
Kill her off and do not feel a thing for her.

Peter: A human love is what you need to feel.
A love for rocks and trees which speak to you,
A love for animals and what they have
To say to you. A love for people as
They really are and not for what you want
Them all to be. You have to love the real.


Keteh: Pessimism – that will get you far, my boy.

Peter: No, optimism – that will get you far.

Adam: You both are right, you both are wrong –
You both are weak, you both are strong –
You have to fuse the two and cope
With what is real – you must have hope.

Keteh: Be prepared to live with disappointment – that
Keeps you strong, and strength is what you need to live.

Peter: Be open to the good in life and people –
There is more good than anyone admits.

Adam: With pessimism’s strength I’ll see the worst –
With optimism’s strength my heart will burst
With all the possibilities I’ll see.
But hope combines the two and makes you free.


Peter: And now it’s time for you to go to sea . . .

Keteh: Wait! Before that boy can enter heaven he
Has to prove that he is just, intelligent
And artistic too, or else he cannot leave.

Peter: You heard him speak – the artistry is there.
His synthesis of the pessimist and
The optimist into the man of hope
Shows wisdom and intelligence as well.
And beauty’s fair, the fair is just, so he
Fulfills this last requirement as well.

Keteh: I am not convinced about the last one yet.

Peter: The beautiful is unity combined
With much variety. It brings the two
Into a harmony, as yin and yang.

Adam: And knowledge is of all variety –
And wisdom is of all that’s unified –
So beauty is the combination of
The two – and equally is justice plied.

Peter: You see? He gets it. He is ready to
Proceed. We only have to get him on
His way. He’s ready for the open sea.
It’s time for him to pass through calming waters.

Keteh: Pessimism’s hard to break when it’s a deep
Pit like mine. So let him go before I change
My dark mind and keep him here until he dies.

Peter: Get in the boat and I will push you off.

(Adam gets in the boat. Peter pushes the boat off the shore. The Salamanders dance)

Salamanders: There’s hope that the fires were good,
Did everything to him they should –
They made him a man
Who knows that he can
Do all that the greatest men could.

Keteh: I will torture you myself if you dare fail.

Peter: And I will bring him back myself if I
See that he does not do what he was brought
Through this to do. I will not let him fail.

(Lightning. Lights go down)

Scene 3

(Lights come up. Adam is alone in the boat in a calm ocean. He is rowing)

Adam: Rowing is good for the soul and the muscles. I was
Not aware of the therapy physical
Work could bring. Oceans of calm can renew, and it does
If you’re open to life. I feel whimsical.

(Sylphs, air nymphs, appear and dance around Adam’s boat)

Sylphs: We are the nymphs of the air and we’ll blow your wind fair
And we’ll lift you to heights and then show you delights.

Adam: Your sisters of the sea already tempted me
And my madness has come and will soon be away.
So do not tempt me back the way I came – I’m free
From the death that they could have brought me with their play.

Sylphs: We will not kill you with our nudity. Let us show
You our bodies and let you rejoice in the
Sight of our nakedness. Take to the air and the glow
Of your cheeks will replace the pink dawn on the sea.

(The Sylphs surround Adam and pull away their robes to show themselves to him)

Adam: I will not be tempted by you –
I won’t be controlled by the lust that I feel.
I’ll stick to the path of the true –
The love that I feel is the love that will heal.

Sylphs: Adam, please float with us, float from the sea to the sky.
Float with us, float with us – please don’t ask why.
Float in the sky with us eternally –
Adam, please float with us into the sky from the sea.

(Sylphs close their robes and dance around Adam)

Adam: Why must I now be tempted, lusting for
These sylphs? I only want to float, enjoy
This oceanic feeling. If the shore
Is near, I welcome it – I wouldn’t toy
With fate. But disembodied, mindless work
Is a new joy for me. I lived within
My head so long that I had come to shirk
My body: heel and elbow, rib and chin
Are all a part of who I am. The soul,
The psyche and the living breath are one –
And if we train the body, we’ll control
Them all – that’s when we will outshine the sun.

Sylphs: Enter the sky with us. Enter a place where the sun
Shines without cease, never sets, never leaves,
Breaking no clouds, where the truth can be seen. Oh, the fun,
Joy we would have if you’d roll up your sleeves,
Ready to row to the shore that we’d show in the air
Rising above you where you can be free
From all this frightening life that your body must share.
Why don’t you give up this body and flee?

Adam: First sex and then transcendence. What you tempt
Me with seems contradictory. Perhaps
It’s more a paradox that I have dreamt.
A tantric offer – good, or just a lapse
For me? The body and the soul are one,
Each forms, reforms the other for the good
Or evil, as we choose. Should I be done
With sex – is that a truly stronger wood?

Sylphs: Taste the salt of our seas. It would please us to take
You with us to the sky where we live on the air.
You will learn to see things that you never could fake
With a poem or painting, and you would not care.

Adam: All that I’ve seen can be turned into words that would make
Something new in the world for us all to have –
Poetry, paintings and music are hardly all fake,
But a justification of life. No salve.

Sylphs: Are you hungry for food? Are you thirsty for drink?
Here’s some alcohol you can imbibe. If you want,
You may have anything that you want, for we think
It is best if you give in and don’t have to hunt.

Adam: If I don’t eat or drink, do not think that I’m weak
When I’m strong. If I choose to give up luxuries
And deprive my own body of both wants and needs,
Then you better be sure that I know what I seek.
I am not on the seas so that I could come please
All of you. An ascetic is off planting seeds.

(The Sylphs all stop dancing)

Sylphs: Then live a joyless life, you stupid brute!
When you weigh ninety pounds, you won’t be cute!

(The Sylphs run off stage)

Adam: To live a balanced life you have to live
A life in moderation of all things.
You must accept as well as learn to give;
You have to listen to the voice that sings
And not just listen to yourself go on.
You have to eat a balanced meal most days,
But feasting and ascetics have their dawn.
Yes, fasting and indulgence have their place
In keeping to a balanced life, and I
Have had to learn that lesson in a most
Enlightening and painful way. I’ll try
To live this better life and never boast
Or cry that life’s unfair to me. It’s not.
You must appreciate the things you’ve got.

(Adam starts rowing again)

Sylphs (off stage): You suck! We hate you! Now you are no fun!
We hope that you’ll regret what you have done!

(Lights go down)

Scene 4

(Lights come up. A Deer, a Cougar, a Wolf, and a Bison are between some trees at the back of the stage. Grass and flowers are also among the trees. In front of them all are dancing Satyrs. In front of them is Todd the Fox)

Todd: Strong lust –
It is a must,
Or life will turn to dust.
Without attraction life’s a gust
Of wind, a life of abstinence is rust
On boats at sea, a broken bust
Of Homer. Don’t encrust
Your soul or trust
To crust.

(Todd runs off stage right)

Satyrs: We dance with lust for pretty girls –
We want to shower them with pretty pearls
And strings of gems –
Let’s try to lift those hems! –
And decorate our girls with pretty things.
We want the pleasure feasting brings.
We want to drink citron and wine
And celebrate – yes, celebrate! – a world that’s good and fine.

(Adam enters stage left. The Satyrs leap in fear and run to the far right edge of the stage)

Satyr 1: Here comes the man
Who threatened us. It was his plan
To turn us into eunuchs
And make us all wear long white tunics
To hide our shame –
I think that Adam is his name.

Adam: No need to run, my satyr friends –
It ends
Up that she was in fact a whore,
A slut, and more.
So don’t fear me. In fact, feel free
To take a jab or two at me –
Go on, make fun
Of me for everything I’ve done.

(The Satyrs step forward to embrace Adam)

Satyrs: Our friend, our pal, our chum!
Why don’t you come
And drink and dance and feast
With us. Let loose your beast –
Indulge in primitive
And animal desires which live
And breathe below the surface of your human life.
Embrace the strife
And struggle with the love
That makes you both a hawk and dove.
Now dance –
Yes, let us see you prance
Around and show us what you got –
Pretend there’s hot,
Hot coals beneath your feet –
Impress us with your rhythmic beat.

(Adam dances with the Satyrs)

Adam: I can’t believe I’ve gone through life
As though I had to walk upon a knife
When I could dance like this
And be in bliss,
Embracing life and all the things
That joyful living brings.

Satyrs: Oh, Adam, Adam, you don’t know the joys
That boys
Like you should have. Just give
In to your lust to live
And take these girls into your arms

(A half-dozen Women rush onstage and surround Adam)

And let yourself embrace their varied charms.
Get drunk with them
And feast and feast and do not stem
Your lust
That we all trust
Has built up over year and years –
Such abstinence brings tears
Into our lovely faun-brown eyes –
For nothing tries
Our hearts like seeing someone cut
Off from all fun. We feel it in our gut.

(The Women surround Adam, and the Satyrs surround the Women. Clothes fly out of the circle as orchids call from the ceiling and cover the floor)

Satyrs: Now, Adam, give yourself to them and trust
The living lust
That wants to take your body up.
Let your hands cup
Whatever’s within reach
And let them teach
Your body all the things
Indulgence in the body brings.
You’ve listened long enough to those who think
That life’s a sickness to be cured and want to shrink
Away from all of life that’s grand
And then demand
We hate ourselves and bodies – lives
Turned into nothing. A person like this strives
To make all people hate
All life like they do, cursing fate
And chance
And doing everything so they won’t glance
Within themselves to see
Just who they are and what they fail to be.
Oh, Adam, we’re so glad
That you have had
A transformation
And, with us, a bodily initiation
Into the world.
We like how you’ve unfurled
So far –
You’re a shining star
And we are sure
That we’ll help you forget the fleur-
That once had caused your life to cease.

(The Animals step forward and pick up the clothes and throw them back into the center of the circle. The Satyrs step away and the Women dance around Adam)

Women: We made a man out of this boy.
Now one will stay for Adam to enjoy.
Oh, Eva, Eva, tell us this:
Is he now worthy of your lusty kiss?

(One of the women, Eva – who should be played by the same actress who played Lily – steps forward, holding Adam’s hand)

Eva: A kiss and more.
I love this man. I’ll be a whore
No more and just be true
To him and try to always see him through
The dangers that that he’ll face
From place to place.
And then I hope he’ll love me too
When everything is through.

Cougar: Lust embraces our good sense and we take lust for true love when we
First give in to the taste lust first avails to our drunk bodies’ needs.

Adam: This woman gives me what I need.
She’ll feed
Me, sate my hunger, slake
My thirst and take
My hand
And understand
My needs that I saw build
Up over time – with her my body’s needs are now fulfilled.

Deer: He won’t listen to us now. It’s his loins speaking for him today.

Eva: Oh, Adam, come
With me and I will show you some
Good times –
And plenty more that you can turn to rhymes –
I want your manly body, you want mine, and so
You’ll learn more than you want to know
About yourself and me –
But all of it will help to set the Muses free.

Wolf: Take her, use her and don’t care what you do. Lust will take you to lands
Which you never had dreamed ever were there, growing with plants flowering.

Adam: I cannot do that – sex
Is no excuse to disrespect someone. Checks
Upon my bedpost
Aren’t what I want. I want the most
That I can get from a relationship.
I do not want to slip
Into some pattern where I use
Someone in such a way that I abuse
Them. I don’t want to start
To treat a woman like she’s a tart
Because I took
Her first to bed before I took a look
At who she was
Or found out what she even does.

Bison: I sure hope that she won’t hurt you too bad. Strength will be needed if
You’ll survive to become the new great poet that you’re destined as.

(Satyrs and Women dance around the couple)

Satyrs and Women: Don’t listen to them, they don’t know
That Eva’s good for you, a prize to show
To everyone
To show that you are done
With that poor fellow
You left behind, as yellow
As a forgotten field of daffodils
And dandelions. All that fills
You now is lust
For her. And you should learn to trust
Your body’s wants and needs
And take what feeds
Your body, fills you up –
Just take the cup
That Eva gives to you –
Your body’s needs are always true.

(Adam passionately embraces Eva and kisses her. Lights go down)

Scene 5

(Lights come up. Ancient ruins in the background. The Corybantes are dancing)

Corybantes: Human life is a complex thing we all too
Quickly try to dismiss. The wonder that we
All should feel when we look on man cannot be
Understood if we treat as aweless that which
We should treat with due awe as awesome, aweful –
Both at once as good Sophocles once showed us.

(Adam and Eva enter stage left)

Adam: It is good to again feel human, live with
Possibility. I can see the future
Stretched before me and calling me to make it
In my image. The spirit lifts me up to
Sketch the world with the poetry that fills me.

Eva: But don’t forget
That I’m the one who helped you get
This far, and justified
Your body’s life against the ones who lied
About the way that you should think
About your body. You were on the brink
And I, yes, I’m
The one who helped you regain time.

Adam: Do not think I’m ungrateful. All you did has
Helped me get to this place where I can grow once
More, begin to emerge into more human
Levels. Time and existence gain more meaning
As I grow and enfold the universe more.

Corybantes: Come and dance with us. Dance and take a taste of
Life, embrace what is human. Leave behind the
Rest and rise up to heights that man alone can
Rise up to. He’s the bridge to mountain peaks we
Cannot yet make out. Clouds obscure our sight, but
We are certain that man will take us quickly.

(The Corybantes grab Adam and Eva by the hands and get them to dance with them in a circle. As they are dancing, the Norns enter stage right with Marie, Adam’s identical opposite. She is carrying a lotus flower)

Norns: Good Adam, cease, and come to us.
The time for dancing’s through. Don’t fuss –
Get over here and let us see
If you’re becoming who you’ll be.

(Adam and Eva leave the dancing Corybantes and approach the Norns)

Eva: And who are these strange women here?
They act like I should fear
Them with their long black flowing robes.
Will they pull out some globes
To tell the future with or what?
Perhaps they’ll tell you in the past I was a slut
Or something else you know
Already. What more could they show?

Norn 3: You stupid girl, your ignorance
And disrespect will earn a glance
Into a future full of pain –
You have to learn that you won’t gain
A life worth living riding men
To where you want to go. Again,
You have to make it on your merit,
Or what you’ll face, you cannot bear it.

Eva: You only speak in obscure riddles
Of end-times vague, unspoken middles.

Norn 3: Then let me be more clear to you:
You have a life that’s colored blue.
No love, no children, and no man
To stay with you for long. No plan
You make will ever be fulfilled,
And nothing that you ever build
Will stand for long. Your genes won’t blend
With anyone’s – you are the end.

(Eva looks horrified and turns to Adam. She buries her face in his shoulder. He comforts her as she cries)

Norn 2: We have much more important things
To do than waste our time with flings
Like her. We come to bring a gift
To Adam which will heal the rift
Among the steps he took and those
He has to take to make a close.

Norn 1: We brought a friend for you who brought
A gift you cannot lose. You ought
To come with us and leave behind
The lust you have – she’ll only bind
You down. Marie here is a friend
On whom you always can depend.

Eva: Don’t leave me, Adam, please.
I feel a breeze
Of change is coming on
And I can’t help but fear the coming dawn,
The sun that heats the ocean till
A hurricane builds up and up to kill
All in its path.
I feel these women’s awful wrath
For me.
Please listen to my plea.

Corybantes: Don’t forget that you’re not a disembodied
Soul. The body does not prevent a man from
Reaching lofty artistic goals no more than
Light prevents both your eyes from ever seeing.

Adam: That is something I don’t forget about. I
Found that love of my body is a part of
Life and I won’t forget that hard-learned lesson.

(Marie steps forward and hands the lotus to Adam)

Marie: Nonetheless, my friend, this pale lotus is for
You, as is my friendship. I’ll love your soul and
Leave your body’s needs to be taken care of
By her, your lover.

Eva: You mean I’ll have his body, you his soul?
I want him whole.
We are a happy pair
And adding you does not seem fair.

Norn 2: You’re lucky that we let you take
A part of him at all. I’d break
You now, except for him. We must
Ensure he grows in faith and trust.

(Adam accepts the lotus flower from Marie)

Norn 3: The lotus flower will protect
You now. And all of us expect
Your concentration on this flower
And you to tap into its power.

(Adam spins the flower in his hand as he looks at it)

Marie: Your good soul is mine as I know that mine is
Yours. Our friendship knows no uncomfortable
Space or place of any confusion. Love for
Us is agapé.

Adam: Welcome, friend, into all the hardships that my
Life is – always unknown, but beautiful and
Free wherever I seem to be. So, welcome.

Marie: You won’t make an angel in all the time you’ll
Be with us, but know that we will prepare you
For the moment when you embrace the one who’ll
Let you see God’s face.

Eva: Shall I just be a pawn and thrown away
When he is done with me? I pray
That it’s not true
And that he’s never through
With me.
Please never set me free.

Corybantes: Eva, body of Adam, and Marie, his
Soul, will keep him undone until he’s woven
By another one who will weave a picture
With his soul that will wake new life inside him.

Norn 1: He has to make this present past,
A strong foundation that will last.

Norn 2: Now we must go and let things take
The path they will. We cannot make
It happen, only tell his fate –
The path he takes is never straight.

Norn 3: We’ll see you once again, my boy –
So do not think your life’s a toy.

(Norns exist stage left)

Marie: Come with me, there is a whole world to see that
Waits for you to rise to embrace. You now must
Rise back up and then go beyond where you had
Been in your past life.

(Marie leads Adam and Eva off stage right. The Corybantes dance)

Corybantes: Conflict, love are combined to make existence –
Humans cannot exempt themselves. The process
Makes the world and all life and consciousness and
Anything that is soon to come from human
Minds to make all the universe a much more
Dangerously complex new time and space. We
See in art and in poetry, in culture,
And in human society as well as
What we call the economy, a social
Space emergent and more complex than people,
Drawing out a new form, divine and human.

(Lights go down. Curtains close)

End Act IV


(The Bard steps out from behind the closed curtain and stands in front of it, center stage)

Bard: Behold as Adam rises through the human and
Beyond. From where he was he has descended through
The moods of time and now he has ascended back
To rise again to where he was in human time
And even take a step beyond. The human is
Indeed a bridge, and Adam will now dance across
To come out more than he had been before. So watch
And hear him rise into a place he never knew
Existed or was possible. We’ll watch him dance
In circles, cycles, lines and pairs and groups
And then dance with himself in such a way that he’ll
Embody all these ways to dance and make a brand
New form. Oh, Muses, who can join this man, who will
Come up with him and see the sun atop
The mountain, realizing what he sees is now
His equal, shining down upon the seas, a light
To guide to help people to see what they can be?

Scene 1

(The Bard gestures with his hand and follows the curtain offstage as it opens to Adam, Eva, and Marie standing in the woods. There are several rocks and trees behind which Rock- and Tree-Spirits hide)

Eva: I’m frightened by the darkness of these woods.
I’m waiting for some hoods
To leap out at us and then rob us three.
Is that some movement in that tree?

Marie: Nothing’s moving. Just stay calm. Trees won’t hurt you,
Eva. Animals are the only living
Things out here. I think that these woods saw humans
Decades ago, hon.

Adam: I have seen these woods once before. I’m sure of
It. But when? I look and the woods, familiar,
Nonetheless seem strange and are unfamiliar.
Look! Was that movement?

(Everyone goes on guard. Chanting voices – quiet at first, but getting louder over a few seconds – come from behind every rock and tree)

Voices: A-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum- a-dum-a-dum-a-dum- a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum-a-dum

(Lights dim. Lightning and thunder. The Dryad steps out from behind a tree)

Dryad: I see you have returned from foreign lands,
Returning to our woods. You’re welcome here
Amongst us. Travel through, but take our hands
Of friendship first and join our dance, for we’re
Prepared to celebrate the coming year.
We hope you three will join us as we prance
Around to celebrate all we hold dear –
A magic-space is opened when we dance.

(Tree- and Rock-Sprites emerge from behind their trees and rocks)

See, everyone is dressed up in their bands
Of color and they all are full of cheer –
They’re ready for the ritual demands
That take on time and dissipate the fear
That often fill our lives and let us peer
At possibilities that could enhance
Our lives. For us it’s very, very clear
A magic-space is opened when we dance.

(The Tree- and Rock-Sprites grab Adam, Eva, and Marie by their hands and begin dancing)

Yes, dance until you feel the spirits near
Your heart and you begin to feel the trance
Take over you so you’ll rise up a tier –
A magic-space is opened when we dance.

(The Dryad joins the dancing)

Everyone: Let’s dance until the earth is born again
And trees and rocks all come alive
And speak to each and every one – begin
To listen so that we will thrive.
Oh dance and dance and feel the rhythmic beat!
Yes, feel it in your very bones!
Now lift your arms and lift and stamp your feet
And wake the very earth and stones.

(Everyone dances for a few more seconds, then stops)

Tree Spirit 1: Oh tell us why you’ve come again?
How did we ever come to win
A second visit here?
Did you come by to visit kin,
To show us that you’ve balanced yin
And yang, or join our sphere?

Adam: I’ve come to visit, knowing that I can
And should not skip a step along
My way back up. I had
To come and visit you, my kin. No man
Can learn to sing a perfect song
Before he sings a fad.
You have to start with what is known to fan
Into another world. It’s wrong
To disrespect your dad.

Rock Spirit 1: Well, welcome home our son who’s wandered far
And chose to come back home to see us here.
You seem much brighter now, more like a star
Than when we saw you last. We saw the fear
That filled your face, but now I see the spark
Of joy behind your eyes, a flame that lurks
Beneath the surface. You have grown a bark
That keeps the living wood alive. That works
For now, but you will have to shed that too.
You’re not alone, but you will have to be –
You have a lovely friend, a lover who
Won’t be around for long. Then you’ll be free.

Spirits: Oh, Adam, Adam, Adam dear
We have to make it very clear
That we mean well and will not steer
From helping you. No, we won’t veer
From that. The time is very near
For you to leave us. We’ll appear
Throughout your life to lend an ear
Or maybe sit and have a beer
If you should find you need our sphere
Which will support you, calm your fear
And gently wipe away each tear.

Eva: I don’t know why it seems
That everyone is trying to get rid of me. Well, teams
Of horses won’t get rid of me,
No rock or tree
Will run
Me off, for he’s the one
For me and I will stand and fight
And claw and bite
To stay with him, my love, my heart –
No, we will never part.

Adam: I could not dream of leaving you –
This body must be fully satisfied.
I wouldn’t know what I would do
If you weren’t with me. I’d have died.
Of loneliness, self-pity, or some strife
That would have surely gone and fried
My brain for good. I need a wife
To keep me on an even keel, it’s true,
So I can keep on loving life.

(Eva gets excited and hugs Adam)

Tree Spirit 2: Now that’s the worst idea that I
Have heard all year. Oh Adam, buy
Some time and do not rush to make
A marriage which I known won’t take.
If you are single, she can leave
Alone, without your things. Don’t cleave
To her like that. Don’t buy a ring –
I would not give her anything.

Eva: He will not listen to advice
From lice
Like you. I hate
You all ‘cause all you ever do’s berate
Me, try to break
Us up, for goodness sake!

Marie: I’d advise him if we were not together.
Strife is something we must avoid so long as
We are friends, like the three of us. I remain his
Soul; she’s his body.

Adam: Let’s stick together. Eva and
Marie and I remain a solid house
Where three create a solid band
And Eva, once she is my spouse,
Will surely come to fit all I demand
Of someone who’s more than a mouse.

Rock Spirit 2: Well, that should plant the seed of doubt in her.
We’ll see it grow must larger than a fir,
And she will leave him, for she’ll never meet
The goals he’ll set for her. She will be beat.

Eva: Come on, let’s go. I do not want to stay
Another single day
Where people tell you I
Must go or why
You are too good for me.
I know you are, but with Marie
I hope
That you can come to cope
With all the ways I know that I will fail
To measure up. I know I’m pale
Compared to you,
But I believe I can be true
And be the kind of woman who can give
Herself to you alone, so long as we both live.

(Adam kisses Eva and grabs her and Marie each by the hand)

Adam: I am afraid we cannot stay –
I have to keep on traveling until
I reach that lovely final day
When I’ve recovered and I’ve gone
Beyond myself. I hope you all will pray
That at long last I’ll see the dawn.
Be good and trust me that I will
Do what is truly best for me, a pawn
To no one, I don’t care how shrill.

(Adam, Eva, and Marie exit stage right)

Dryad: Good-bye, good luck. We hope that you are right.
(aside) He’s not, of course; with love he’s not that bright.

(Lights go down)

Scene 2

(Five Trolls are standing in front of the mouth of a cave, weapons out, arguing)

Troll 1: My honor is at stake and the fact is that
I must insist on having you make up what
You did to me or else I will be
Forced to defend it. You will restore it.

Troll 2: Your pride’s misplaced you honorless imbecile!
False ‘possums have more honor in playing their
Deaths! Hognosed snakes with tongues uncurled are
Brave and an honor to snakes beside you!

(The Trolls glare at each other and prepare to fight. Adam, Eva, Marie, and Peter enter stage left)

Adam: Such gratefulness cannot be expressed as that
I felt when I set eyes on your figure as
You broke the fog bank. I have needed
You for a time my good friend. You’re welcome.

Peter: I’m here to lead you when you need me to.
I’m here to give you guidance when it’s due.

(Adam, Eva, Marie, and Peter notice the Trolls at the same time the Trolls notice them)

Troll 3: Invaders here to take from us all we have.
Draw swords and rob and kill and then take both the
Sluts. Girls are good to keep around to
Entertain us with their naked dancing.

(Adam and Peter draw their swords)

Eva: I will not do that any more –
I will not play the whore
For trolls
Whose only goals
Are drinking, fighting, whoring, taking offense at
Each little thing, just like a brat,
And honor-killing left and right. They’ll mug
You for your shoes just like a thug.

Marie: You will find a serpent that’s stronger and more
Dangerous than hognosed snakes playing dead in
Gardens if you try to attack the likes of
Me. You should back off.

(The Trolls rush forward and seize Eva and Marie before anyone can react. Adam and Peter fight a pair of Trolls as the others drag Eva and Marie, struggling, to the other side of the stage)

Troll 1: Trolls! Trolls! Our fellow trolls, come defend all your
Great country from the hateful invaders or
Your land will be lost forever.
Help us before it’s too late! Please help us!

Adam: You’ll die before they come for you.
The only thing you’d better do
Is let those women go before I kill
Each one of you, cause I won’t have my fill
Of blood until they are let go –
I’ve killed trolls once before, you know.

(As the fighting continues, Eva and Marie continue to struggle. One slaps Eva, getting her to stop, but Marie fights even more, causing a Troll to draw his sword and stab her in the belly. She crumples to the floor)

Eva: Marie’s been murdered, murdered, killed!
My dream has been fulfilled
Much to my grief.
A dream is only brief
And is not meant to come to life –
And now I will be rife
With guilt
For what my mind had built.
I never meant to see you lie
In your own blood and die.

(When Adam and Peter see Marie fall, they fight harder, killing the two Trolls. They rush the Trolls with Eva and Marie. One tries to protect himself with Eva, but Adam stabs him under Eva’s arm. She rushes behind Adam)

Adam: Death’s too good for what you have done today to
Someone who’s your better. But death is all I
Have to give so I will be happy dealing
Death to you, coward!

(Adam kills the Troll who killed Marie. The last Troll runs to the other end of the stage)

Troll: Don’t think I’m running off. I’ll return with more
Death-dealing trolls to take our revenge on you.
Dark days are all you have to face for
Life for the deaths you have caused today, men.

Adam: Bring them here and I will deal death to them as
Well as I just dealt it to these dead corpses.
I will kill as many as you can bring to
Me to be slaughtered.

(The Troll runs off stage left. Adam looks down at Marie)

Adam: Dear Marie, what have these cruel, thuggish trolls done?
Life is taken by those who don’t respect it –
Someone who was better than all of them, whose
Soul had been better.

Peter: I fear to tell you how you could revive
Marie. I fear that you would do what could
Be done to bring her back and yet I feel
I must if you are to continue on.

Adam: Tell me what it is that I have to do to
Save her life and I will be sure to do it.
My own life is worth it to give to bring her
Back to the living.

Peter: The blood of your own heart into her wound
Would being her back to life. But only yours
Will work to bring her back. That’s what you have
To do to bring her back to life. The blood
That comes out of your heart can bring the dead
To life again. You have that power now.

(Adam looks to Peter, then to Marie. Several Trolls rush in stage left, but stop and watch as Adam gets down on his knees, bends over Marie, takes his sword, and pierces his chest and heart. He falls over Marie. As he dies, she comes to life. The Trolls are deeply impressed)

Eva: I can’t believe he’d do
That, kill himself for her. I know it’s true
He’d never do a thing
Like that for me. I cannot bring
Myself to stay
And watch his death today.

(Eva runs off stage right)

Marie: What just happened? Why is it Adam’s over
Me and why am I on the ground and bloody?
Adam? What? Is Adam now dead? What happened?
Peter, please tell me.

Peter: That troll there killed you. Adam sacrificed
His life to bring you back. The blood of his
Good heart can bring a person back to life.

Troll: Such men as he are awesome to look upon.
Look, trolls, at what he did and lament that you
Have not had opportunity or
Strength to do such a fair deed as Adam’s.

(The Trolls bow down)

Peter: We thank you for such gracious words. Now let
Us take his body off so we can give
Him all the honors that he’s due from us.

(The Trolls nod. Marie gets out from under Adam’s body, and she and Peter carry his body off stage right. Lights go down)

Scene 3

(Lights come up. The Borak is standing in the center of the stage, tail down. To his right are three Knights; to his left are three Angels. Adam’s lifeless body lies in front of him, with Peter to his left, Marie to his right)

Peter: We brought you Adam’s body, Borak. Life
Was given so that life could then return
To someone Adam valued deeply. Adam
Deserves another life, a resurrection
So he can do what he was born to do.
If this, his sacrifice, is not sufficient
To prove his worth, I don’t know what could be.

Knight 1: He’s shown his bravery before and we
Would stand beside him for eternity.

Angel 1: He’s proven that he’s just, intelligent,
And beauty’s lover. He is neither poor
In spirit nor a hard ascetic bent
On pain instead of pleasure – such a boor
Could never enter Paradise because
He’d never understand the pleasures there.
It’s not that people like them all have flaws
That send them all to Hell – their Heaven’s bare
Of beauty, that is all, and thus it can’t
Achieve the true complexity and hard
Concreteness that it could have been. They shan’t
Enjoy the fruits available – no bard
Will sing to them. But Adam will enjoy
It all – he’ll get what Heaven can employ.

Borak: Behold the man who lies before us here –
He’s dead because in life he had no fear
Of death, and thus he’s worthy of his life,
A life he’s learned to love and hold most dear.

(The Borak spreads its wings)

Because he’s learned to love and cherish strife,
And recognized that peace is its good wife,
A serpent’s poison will revive the man –
A little poison will reverse the knife.

(An Angel produces a serpent and brings it to Adam’s side and allows the serpent to bite Adam on the wrist. Adam takes a deep breath and sits up)

Adam: Am I in Heaven? What is this? I can
Not understand why Peter’s here. I ran
My heart through so Marie could live, but she
Is here. Did I finish what I began?

(Adam looks up at the Angel, who stands)

An angel looking over me, I see.
But I’ve seen angels once before. Those three
I saw when I was certainly alive.
Am I alive or in eternity?

(The Angel steps away and the Borak looks down at Adam. Adam looks surprised. The Borak closes its wings. The Angel returns to his place)

Borak: Don’t look surprised to see me, Adam. Strive
Instead to understand yourself – arrive
At where you’ve been so that you come to know
How very far you still will have to drive.

Marie: Adam, I’m so glad you returned to me. My
Life is half of yours and you sacrificed it
Still for mine. I’ll love you forever, Adam –
You’ve earned my friendship.

Knight 1: All hail, for Adam has returned – a grail
For others who would learn of true life –

Knights: Hail!

Angel 2: The poet is the one true teacher who
Can teach humanity about itself –
But he himself must be both just and true
Or he’ll remain unread upon the shelf.
When beauty speaks through poets’ lips or pen,
The word becomes alive again, the milk
That nurtures humankind so what has been
Will feed all that we have, dress it in silk
Of royal blue and purple. Poets make
The laws we live by, so we must be sure
Our poets truly know the world – the fake,
The prophet who is false and is not pure
Must be rejected, meaning we must learn
The good from bad so that we will not burn.

(Adam stands. Peter and Marie stand with him)

Adam: I’ve been reborn – I think that I should show
Appreciation for this second go
At life. A poet’s life is hard to take,
But such a gift will only make me grow.

Borak: The keys to Paradise are given – make
The best of all your gifts. Don’t ever break
The trust that you’ve been given. If you do,
You’ll face a hot and painful fiery lake.

Adam: I know you, Borak. You’re the one who flew
The Prophet once to Heaven. I hope you
Can take me there as well so I can look
At Paradise myself and see what’s true.

Borak: I’ve taken up to heaven who I took
And I can’t bring another – I forsook
The trip by going once before. I’d grant
You it if I could access Heaven’s book.

Peter: You will not need the sword the Laméd Wufnik
Bestowed on you. The shield is useless too.
You’re leaving danger far behind and now
Are entering more civilized terrain.

(An Angel approaches Adam to accept the sword and shield)

Adam: I’m glad to hear that I won’t need these. Can’t
We leave these weapons for some future ant
Who must become a lion in the wild,
Or sit in some dark corner just to rant?

Borak: The lion must become a happy child
Before the transformation from a mild
And antish man becomes complete. But these
We’ll keep to give the next one we have riled.

Adam: With this rebirth I feel like I could seize
On anything in life just as I please,
That I am whole enough, that I’m complete
And ready now to live life off my knees.

Angel 3: When you are whole it’s only then that you
Are ready for a mate for you to love.
A single angel’s made when there are two
Who love each other here on earth. The Dove
Is always anywhere an angel looks –
And thus when two find love, then they will see
Sweet God wherever they may look. The brooks
Begin to flow with milk and honey, free
To nourish your true love. But only when
You’re whole and do not need another one
To make you feel complete will you find men
Or women who will love you. There are none
Who find this kind of love who aren’t complete –
To try will only result in defeat.

Peter: You’re not quite whole, but you’re well on your way.
You have to take a bit of every place
You’ve been before you learn to be a whole,
Without a missing piece or hole, so you
Will find the peace you need to do your work.

Marie: Do I have a place in this life prepared for
Him? I want to have a small role at least in
Adam’s life. Or will he outgrow me and quickly
Move to new pastures?

Peter: You’ll always have a role, my dear. He’ll need
Your friendship all his life like you’ll need his,
But he is destined for another’s love.

Knight 2: He’ll live a life where unrequited love
Lives in his past alone. He’ll rise above
It as he mines it, digging up the past
So he can make a future that will last.

Borak: Now Adam bow before me and repeat
The blessing that I give so you’ll complete
The transformation that will make you whole
And ready to accomplish any feat.

(Adam bows. The Borak raises his peacock tail up over them)

Adam & Borak: Oh, God, accept this blessing and this soul
Who comes before you like a newborn foal
Who struggles just to stand up in the grass.
Please bless the journey and the final goal.

(Adam stands)

Borak: Now go and finish up your trip. The crass
But value-loving gnome waits at his pass
For you. He asked if you would soon appear
Again. His love for you’s as clear as glass.

(Adam nods)

Peter: It’s time to go Marie and Adam. Let
Us get back on our way. Your journey will
Be over soon – but first we have to see
The gnome and fairies once again before
You’re where you’ll need to be to go beyond
The man you were. But first you must be whole.

Knight 3: All hail, for Adam will return a grail
For others who would learn of beauty –

Knights: Hail!

(Adam bows to them, then follows Peter and Marie off stage right. Lights go down)

Scene 4

(Lights come up. The Gnome is overseeing the mining Dwarves)

Gnome: The gold is there. You have to keep
On digging if we are
To find the vein. It isn’t deep –
We haven’t very far.

(Adam, Peter, and Marie enter stage left)

You’re here at last. I’ve waited such
A long, long time for you
To come back through. I want to touch
You just to prove it’s true
That you’ve returned. I felt so bad
About my selling Lily
And what you went through. I went mad
And just a little silly
To find a gift that I could give
To make up what I did
I do not think that I could live
With what I did. I bid
And got a really splendid price
On this spyglass which shows
Reality as rolling dice
And everything that grows
And changes, waves which grow and move,
And systems which emerge
To make new objects. This will prove
That we live on the verge
Of order and of chaos, time
Is bare before your pair
Of wizened eyes. With this you’ll climb
Into a world laid bare.

(The Gnome hands the spyglass to Adam, who accepts it)

Adam: I thank you for this splendid gift.
I cannot wait to see
What all exists within the rift
We call reality.

(Adam puts it to his eye and looks around through it)

Remarkable. I see unfurled
Before my very eyes
A whole entire other world
No longer in disguise.

Gnome: Yes, that spyglass will show to you
The world that science knows –
Just look and you’ll see all that’s true
As far as nature goes.

Marie: Splendid! Let me see through it. Life as it is
Truly must be something to see. I’ll quickly
Give it back to you. It’s a marvelous gift
You have received.

(Adam hands the spyglass to Marie, who puts it to her eye and wonders at what she sees)

Peter: A splendid gift indeed. But don’t forget
That it’s a way for you to see the facts
Which then allow the truth of life to be
Available to you for poetry,
For that’s were all truth lies beyond mere fact.

Marie: What a place of order I see before me.
Chaos tamed and channeled to make the world
Structured, more complex. I see order growing,
Splitting, creating.

Gnome: And who is this? What happened to
That girl we went to save?
This one is not the one which you
Went off and nearly gave
Your life to rescue. Who is this?
Did she replace the one
I sold? You seemed intent on bliss
With Lily. Was there none?

Adam: It turns out she was never who
I thought she was, my friend.
Marie is just my friend. I’d do
A lot for her. I’d end
My life to rescue hers again.
But I discovered that
I’d only live a life of sin
If I’d stayed with that brat.

Gnome: If you are happy, I am too.
Perhaps one day you’ll find
A woman beautiful and true,
Intelligent and kind.

Adam: I’m sure I will, but I will live
If I remain alone.
I’ve learned that I have more to give
When I become my own.

Dwarf 1: We hit the gold!
There is untold
Amounts. We’re sold!
Good gnome, you’re bold –
We thought this cold
Hill’d never hold
This kind of gold.

Gnome: I know just where to look for it –
I always sniff it out.
I never had a single bit
Of worry or of doubt.

(The Gnome walks over to where the Dwarf struck gold and picks up three pieces. He walks back and hands one each to Adam, Marie, and Peter)

Gnome: Another gift for each of you –
The first of all the gold
That I found here with this good crew.
The rest will soon be sold.

Peter: We thank you for this gift. We never thought
To get a gift like this. You’re generous
Beyond belief. I honestly once thought
You far too greedy and the kind who would
Do anything to make a buck. But here
I see your generosity is clear.

Gnome: I’m happy that you changed your mind.
I’m generous with friends
And I am sure that you will find
That just because it ends
With you that that just shows that you
Are what I value. I
Am generous with friends, it’s true,
But I will never try
To take from others to pretend
That generosity
Is spending others’ money. Lend
Your own, but leave me free.

Peter: Don’t let the fairies hear you say those things.

Gnome: Those fairies make no sense to me.
Thy seem to make up words
And blabber on incessantly,
And try to make men herds.

Adam: They’re not too bad. I once was just
Like them. Thank God I’ve grown
And see that they are just the crust
Of what mankind has sown.

Peter: Well, thank you once again, but we must go.
The fairies are indeed the stop that looms
Ahead of us – the final step before
We witness Adam become more than he
Knew possible. And it is thanks to you
And this, your gift, and all that he went through.
Come on, let’s go. We’ve almost reached our goal.

Adam: Well, thanks again for this great gift.
You’ve shown that you’re a true
Good friend. Keep working so you’ll lift
Us all into the blue.

(Adam waves good-bye to the Gnome, takes the spyglass from Marie, and he and Marie follow Peter off stage right. Lights go down)

Scene 5

(Lights come up. Todd is center stage. The Fairies are behind him. None look like Lily. The background looks like a college campus)

Todd: Marie
Is so lovely.
I’d bend upon my knee –
I’d like to have her just for me.
That woman’s lovelier than a fairy,
More fertile than a honeybee.
Oh, will she hear my plea?
I hope that she
Is free.

Fairies: Go away you silly fox. And take that elitist versification with you. Rhyme and rhythm are so aristocratic. And your notions of women! What are you, some kind of animal?

Todd: I’d call
An animal
One having far less gall
Than you, each one a mindless doll.
You are the ones who rose before the fall
Because you hang out at the mall
And never see the pall
That hides the wall
To y’all.

Fairies: How rude. If we weren’t animal rights supporters, we’d lock you up. If we weren’t anti-violence, we’d beat you up. If we weren’t anti-death penalty, we’d have you killed. You’re both too old and far too young for us to do a thing to you. Now go away, you audacious creature.

(Todd the Fox does a half-salute and exits stage right. As he leaves, Adam, Peter, and Marie enter stage left. Adam is carrying the lotus flower in one hand, the spyglass in the other)

Fairies: Peter! Adam! Welcome back. Oh look! You lost your lovely orchid and have a lotus flower instead. Are you becoming Buddhist? All of us are New Agers, you know? Ohm . . . !

(The Fairies keep the “Ohm” up for several seconds, touching their thumbs to their forefingers as they hold their hands out in front of them, palms up)

Peter: Dear fairy ladies, yes, he has been given
The lotus flower by the Norns so he
Can soon transcend the mental state he’s in.

Fairies: Oh! The Norns! They’re scary. They’re always going on and on about time and we don’t really like time – well, except relativistic time, which shows us any time at all, or none, whatever time will please us will do, and it’s entirely up to you. We want an unchanging world and nature and economy, a college campus life. We want to share and dance in an open ring that closes off the meanness of the world. You should have heard the fox just now talking in poetic verse, in rhythms that remind us of our beating hearts and our deaths that come too soon, a violation if there ever was one. If we can stop all change, then we will never ever die!

Adam: What are they rambling on about?

Marie: Don’t you stray too far from the poetry you
Learned. Their easy prose can be tempting, but you
Can’t forget that poems alone can tap the
Brain’s deepest rhythms.

Fairies: What is she talking about? And who is this girl? Is she the one Adam went after the last time we saw him?

Peter: We brought him here and through the things that he
Went through so Adam would become a poet.
And this is Adam’s friend Marie, not Lily.

Fairies: A poet? We like poetry too, you know. Observe:

Fairy 1: Fragmented acumen that
The rhizome deconstructs in this versification
Of the polyphonic moment
That constructs, instructs, destructs to
Conform, inform, deform and even reform the form/structure
Dissolving into the probabilities
Collapsing the wave function of our thoughts.

Fairies: Now that’s a poem. A real thinker, that one.

Peter: I do not have the foggiest idea
What you just said. I think it’s best for you
To speak in prose instead if that is what
You think is poetry. We want his verse
To give us more, not less, if we should want
To try to understand his poetry
At ever-deeper levels with each read.

Fairies: It’s the end of poetry, the end of art, the end of history, so don’t make a big deal of it. Everything’s dissolved into the democracy of prose. I mean, can you imagine an epic poem about the poor? We want reality in our so-called art. We want art democratized. Art should be what everyone can do equally.

(Peter turns to Adam)

Peter: You haven’t said a word since we arrived.

Adam: That’s not quite true, you know. I’m just absorbing.

(Adam spins the lotus between his thumb and finger and watches the petals)

Fairies: What’s that spyglass in your other hand?

Adam: A gift the gnome gave me so I could see
Reality as science shows it is.

Fairies: Then we should make a gift to you of this that fits one end and shows reality in its plurality. Science isn’t the only way of understanding the world, you know. Just push the button and you’ll get a different view based on some other culture or disciplinary world view. It even has religious views, though everyone knows that religious views are just silly and aren’t really legitimate. People just use religion to get power over others, you know.

Marie: Almost as absurd as believing fairies
Actually exist, don’t you think? Elitist
Atheists annoy me to death. Your groundless
Hatred belies you.

(Adam holds out his hand and accepts the gift from a Fairy and attaches it to the spyglass)

Adam: I’d like to thank you for this gift. There’s more
To life than science shows. There’s more to me
And who I learned to be than just a poet
In all the things that I went through. I’ve learned
Of love and friendship and that I cannot
Have either one until I become whole.
This isolationist community
Of pluralistic world views will not
Make any person whole. It fragments us
And makes us turn to drugs and men who both
Will promise us utopias. But that
Is not an option, being nowhere, so
We sit, despair, and don’t know why we do.
I thank you for this gift, but I must go.
I’ve been here once before in life and it
Was not enough. There must be more than this,
A world of unconnected insights which
Just cause despair that we can never know
Or understand a thing. Where meaning’s gone
And wisdom’s ridiculed. I have to go.

Peter: The next step is the loneliest because
So few have gone before. The first ape to
Emerge into a man went mad, as did
The first to take the step that you’ll soon take.
The next step is the highest step, unlike
The ones you took before, where many tread
The path down smooth and wide. The path
Before you is more lightly tread, but you
Can show the way to many more to come.
To take it, first look through the altered spyglass.

(Adam puts the spyglass to his eye and looks around, clicking the buttons on the side)

Adam: I see the fairies turn to people, then
They disappear, and then return to fairies.
And Peter, you’re a fox, a harpy too,
A set of Norns, a fairy. You’re a gnome,
the Laméd Wufnik, knights, and angels too.
I see a troll and object spirits, satyrs,
The basilisk. You’re now the dragon and
Keteh Merriri, salamanders, Eva,
And Corybantes too. You’re animals,
The Borak and yourself. I see Marie.
I do not understand what all I’m seeing.

(Adam takes the spyglass from his eye)

Peter: I’m Peter, rock on which you stand, and I
Am Proteus as well, who changes shape.
I’m your reflection – who you have to be.
Now follow me to become who you are.
As I dissolve in you and you in me,
You’ll become one in unity, prepared
To create beauty, beautiful yourself.

(Peter grabs Adam by the hand and leads him off stage right. Marie remains behind with the Fairies. Lights go down)

Scene 6

(A spotlight on Adam, who is alone on the stage. He spins the lotus flower in his hands as he speaks. The antique mirror is on the right edge of the stage, in darkness)

Adam: I am alone. But who, besides an animal or God,
Could live alone? Is anybody else out there with me?
I feel as though I’m looking down on all humanity
And yet I do not feel I’m better than you men. How odd
That I should feel serenity like this for all of you
When all I felt before was cold resentment. All the stages
Of man now live inside me, healthy and aligned in pages
Of harmony, a unity in me. I have a true
Perspective on perspectives, vision unified, complex.
I now see time in hierarchies, evolving over time.
I now see man in hierarchies, emerging in their climb.
I’ve learned to love my body with my mind and enjoy sex
As what it is: a swift descent into the animal
That elevates us up beyond the human realm, for it
Is true that the way up and down are both the same. I sit
And see that time is bared before me now. I see that all
The world has a voice with which to speak – I only have
To listen to the waves that flow upon and over me.
The gentle nudging I once felt that told me what to be
And do has now become a crystal voice, a gentle salve
That I must listen to. Perhaps I hear the voice of God;
Perhaps it’s future times who need my actions to be born –
Perhaps the two are each the same and travel the same worn-
New path. I am alone, but never quite alone. How odd.

(The lights come up and the Norns enter stage left)

Norns: All hail! The prophet has arrived!
We hope you do not feel deprived
In life, but now have learned instead
That life’s not something you should dread.

Adam: I feel if man’s the golden mean of animal and angel,
Then I’ve become the golden mean of man and angel through
The spiral journey that I took. But how can it be true?
I’m not the first man to descend or been sent out to travel.

Norn 1: When Homer, Virgil, Dante too
Went to the places you went through
They did so in the middle of
Man’s journey – thus they rose above.

Morn 2: But you descended at the end
Of man’s complexity, to send
You up beyond where any man
Could set his eyes or have them scan.

Norn 3: You weren’t the first, but many more
Will follow you. You’ll prop the door
So others can come through to see
A world of time that’s truly free.

Adam: It’s odd, I seem to understand your riddles now. They make
More sense to me. I see the world for what it is and not
For what I think that it should be. I see that ought has got
To come from is – that is the only choice that’s not a fake.

Norn 3: I think the boy is ready now –
There’s nothing that will make him bow –
But still, your life will always be
One that will push you to your knee.

Norn 2: You see the world in such a way
That you will find it hard to play
The games that men all play. You see
Their games in their simplicity.

Norn 1: And everyone who knew you once
Before won’t understand your wants
Or intellectual needs or how
You think. You’ll always cause a row.

Adam: I’m ready for all that, to learn survival in this new,
Exciting world that I’ve been granted by my pain and fate.
I have no fear – it fell away – and without fear no hate
Exists for anyone. I only don’t know what to do.

Norn 2: Well, we’re not here to tell you that –
You’ve landed deftly, like a cat –
And now our job with you is through.
Your life hereafter’s up to you.

(Norn 1 points at the mirror)

Norn 1: You see, you’re back. You have returned
To where you started from. We burned
Your dregs to purify your gold,
So now it’s time to go be bold.

Norn 3: You’ll go home to a place where no
One understands you. You will go
To find a people hostile to
All you will do – just know it’s true.
A prophet will be scorned by all
Who knew him once, and he will fall
Into disfavor with those who
Will lose their power due to you.

Norn 2: You do not need the lotus now –
You do not need a sacred cow –
You have transcended the mere man
You were. You’re on a different plan.

(Adam hands the lotus flower to Norn 2)

Adam: Divested now of everything, I step into the life
I left, a different man today. I cannot ever know
What life will bring – my only choice I ever had was grow
Or die a bit whenever I am faced with any strife.

(Without looking back, Adam walks over to the mirror and steps through it. Lights go down)

Scene 7

(Lights come up. Adam and Roland, a poet, are standing in Adam’s living room. There is a couch, the mirror, the table with the C.D. player and the spyglass on it, and a door on the left side of the stage. Roland is reading from a sheet of paper)

Roland: I love this new connected space we make
With every keystroke. I could have a friend
Or lover pining for my presence send
An invitation via e-mail, take
Me to a foreign land so we could break
Some bread and drink some wine and sit and blend
Our souls with conversations that won’t end
While sitting at a table by a lake.
Yet others I will never see, just be
A set of pixels to. And arguments
Will spark that would not happen in the real.
But still, I joy in knowing that I’ll see
Far more than generations past – the tents
We spread encompass more to let us heal.

(Roland looks up from the poem)

Interesting. I mean, it’s a sonnet about the internet. The subject is okay, I guess, but why a sonnet? Who writes sonnets anymore? It’s a style any real poet has thankfully forgotten.

Adam: Scorn not the sonnet! Critic, you have frowned
Mindless of its just honors. With this key
Shakespeare unlocked his heart, the melody
Of this small lute gave ease to Petrarch’s wound;
A thousand times this pipe did Tasso sound;
With it Camöens soothed an exile’s grief.
The sonnet glittered a gay myrtle-leaf
Amid the cypress with which Dante crowned
His visionary brow – a glow-worm lamp.
It cheered mild Spencer, called from Faery-land
To struggle through dark ways, and, when a damp
Fell round the path of Milton, in his hand
The thing became a trumpet, whence he blew
Soul-animating strains – alas, too few!

Roland: Seriously? Just because you make your argument in sonnet form, that doesn’t make it persuasive. Especially since you list a bunch of people nobody even reads. It shows you’re clever, but that’s about it.

Adam: Are you serious? I quoted Wordsworth now, a famous one at that.

Roland: I’ve never read a Wordsworth poem.

Adam: You teach poetry!

Roland: But not the old stuff. It’s old and dusty and of little use in modern poetry or the modern world. Knowing history only dooms you to repeat it. Why else would you have written a sonnet except you’ve obviously been reading and, worse, memorizing so many? I neither clutter my nor my students’ minds with others’ works. That keeps us fresh.

Adam: It seems to me that all my sonnet-reading did for me was show me that the form is far from being an exhausted one. There’s so much more that can be done with it.

Roland: Well, that’s my advice and my opinion, as good as yours. You asked me what I thought, and there it is.

Adam: I never thought you hadn’t read a Wordsworth poem – or, I’d guess from what you’ve said, much else.

Roland: I’m sorry, but I don’t think you’d be a good addition to our staff. You’re stuck in the past and we’re writing poetry for the future.

Adam: I’d rather say you’re stuck in present-times and teach a poetry which has no future. Your rejection of my services harms you, not me.

(Roland hands Adam back his poem)

Roland: Well, good luck with that attitude and these poems no one will ever publish. I won’t be seeing you around – or in print.

(Roland turns and walks out through the door)

Adam: You’d think that creativity has died
Since all I hear is I cannot fit in
Since I am always overqualified.
No matter what I do I am denied,
No matter if it’s strangers or it’s kin –
You’d think that creativity has died.
I find myself alone, without a guide,
And facing each rejection with a grin
Since I am always overqualified.
I look around and give the earth a wide
Glance. When did beauty turn into a sin?
You’d think that creativity has died.
On looking back, I’m sure I would have cried
To be rejected here, and once again,
Since I am always overqualified.
Oh, people, tell me, where did beauty hide
From you? Oh, did you lose it in the din?
You’d think that creativity has died
Since I am always overqualified.

(A knock on the door. Adam walks over and opens it to Marie and Todd. Todd is wearing a long coat)

Marie: Adam! It’s so wonderful seeing you! I’m
Sorry I have been off the map for quite a
While. This is Todd, my new boyfriend. This is
Adam, my best friend.

(Todd shakes Adam’s hand)

Todd: I’m glad
To meet you, lad.
I really like your pad.
It goes beyond the current fad,
A way of decorating I think’s sad.
I’m sorry, but I’m really bad
At this. I feel a cad –
It makes my dad
Real mad.

Adam: You look familiar. I’m not sure. I could have seen you somewhere once.

Marie: Todd is such a wonderful person, Adam.
He is a successful professional who
Organizes meetings with interesting
Speakers. That’s cool, right?

Adam: I’m sure it is. But tell me how you met? I know you don’t go out that much.

Marie: Oh e-Harmony. It’s a great new way for
People just like us to make time to meet new
People. I’m so happy with Todd. I cannot
See life without him.

Adam: Well, I am glad you two have found your happiness.

Todd: You do
Not look like you
Are happy for the two
Of us. I do not want to rue
Our coming over here. I’m willing to
Believe that what I think’s not true:
That seeing us will brew
Up feelings new
And blue.

Adam: Not at all. You only caught me after I just met a poet who, though not a poet anyone would ever read, has power over teaching students and the power not to hire me. It’s frustrating is all, and should not matter when it comes to my best friend. Congratulations. I got caught up in myself, and that was rude of me. I’m sorry.

Marie: Don’t apologize. You have run into these
Kinds of problems over and over. I can’t
Blame you. Getting turned down again has got to
Be so annoying.
I’m afraid that we must be going, though. We
Only stopped to give you a quick hello so
You could meet my boyfriend today. We’re on our
Way to the opera.

Adam: I’m glad you came to introduce the two of us. Perhaps I’ll have you over for some dinner soon.

Marie: That would be great. Bye.

Adam: Good-bye.

(Marie and Todd turn to leave. A foxtail pops out the back of Todd’s coat for a second. Adam shuts the door and turns to the audience)

Adam: I can’t believe what I’ve just seen –
My mind is playing tricks on me –
There’s only one thing it could mean.
I can’t believe what I’ve just seen –
Since madness made my mind turn clean,
I thought that I had become free.
I can’t believe what I’ve just seen.
My mind is playing tricks on me.

(Todd the Fox runs on stage right and runs through the mirror to appear in Adam’s apartment)

Todd: Oh no,
You did not go
Away from us. You crow
In every line you write you know
About our time and place. We let you grow
Into the man you are, from woe –
And you should always show
You went below
To glow.

(Todd the Fox runs back through the mirror and exits stage right)

Adam: I guess my fight has just begun. I have
To live upon the earth and draw
From my experience on it to grow
And live and write. I must believe that I
Will do just fine and that the ones who come
To me are who are meant to learn from me.
One day I’ll find someone who understands
That being overqualified’s a gift,
That knowing many things is valuable
And lets you understand the way the world
Behaves so our ideas can match the real.
And that’s why I write poetry and speak
Through it in metaphors, a language which
Allows me the ability to speak
In ways that others can then understand.
I know I’ll have to struggle on alone
A little while longer till I find
A friend to love and marry and enjoy –
A joy that I’m allowed now that I’m whole.

(Adam goes over and picks up the spyglass and puts it to his eye)

I now can see myself and all of you
Exactly as you really, truly are.

(Lights go down. A spotlight on the Bard, who walks across the stage as the curtains close. The Bard stops center stage)

Bard: And what more could I add to this? The Muses spoke
And showed the distance Adam traveled. He is whole
And will be ready when his lover comes to him.
But that’s a tale that won’t be told, for stories must
Have conflict if they are to be a story which
We want to listen to at all. The story’s done
When everyone is happy ever after. Yet
I know that some of you will want to know what’s next.
Will he get married? Yes. Will he have children? Three.
Will he receive appreciation for all that
He knows and does? Such things don’t matter much
To him. He only wants to do his work and be
Allowed to grow and change and always do what he
Knows to be right and good. You have to trust he will.

(The Bard disappears behind the closed curtain and the spotlight goes down)

The End of Reflections

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