(offstage) I am an apple, ready to be eaten- but what’s one less apple on earth anyway? I am a dog, ready to be walked. (bark then enter stage smiling and bark seven times). I am a free dog, but I don’t need no owner, I walk myself, I throw my own balls and I eat my own apples. (Collapses to the ground lay on the floor for 3 minutes then stand up and scream in slow motion and crawl off stage) (from off stage) make apples illegal , no legalize apples , down with the red fruit. (walk on stage ) you don’t know me I’m Shnaiqua (in a soft voice) I own 7 apple trees (scream) THUG LIFE. SEVEN SEVEN SEVEN SEVEN SEVEN SEVEN SEVEN SEVEN SEVEN. I am perfection, god blesses me not you, fucktard.
For full script or information about this play please email Charles Burton at: firstname.lastname@example.org. We at Labouk welcome questions and would love to hear from you. (exit stage)
I live in the American Gardens Building on West 81st Street on the 11th floor. My name is Patrick Bateman. I’m 27 years old. I believe in taking care of myself, and a balanced diet and a rigorous exercise routine. In the morning, if my face is a little puffy, I’ll put on an ice pack while doing my stomach crunches. I can do a thousand now. After I remove the ice pack I use a deep pore cleanser lotion. In the shower I use a water activated gel cleanser, then a honey almond body scrub, and on the face an exfoliating gel scrub. Then I apply an herb-mint facial masque which I leave on for 10 minutes while I prepare the rest of my routine. I always use an after shave lotion with little or no alcohol, because alcohol dries your face out and makes you look older. Then moisturizer, then an anti-aging eye balm followed by a final moisturizing protective lotion. There is an idea of a Patrick Bateman. Some kind of abstraction. But there is no real me. Only an entity. Something illusory. And though I can hide my cold gaze, and you can shake my hand and feel flesh gripping yours, and maybe you can even sense our lifestyles are probably comparable, I simply am not there.
I don’t know much about myself, I know im an orphan, I know I’m a freak,
and of course i know that im Japanese. But why do i have such terrible nightmares, filled with hate and blood and guts? I’m not like that at all, I wouldn’t even hurt a fly, oh there he goes, back to his family, oh i envy him. sometimes i wonder about my parents, are they san masters? did they serve the emperor? oh sometimes i wonder what my mom and dad are really like.
Boy, boy, crazy boy. Get cool boy. Got a rocket in your pocket, keep cooly cool boy. Don’t get hot, ’cause man you’ve got some high times ahead. Take it slow and daddy-o, you can live it up and die in bed. Boy, boy, crazy boy. Stay loose boy. Breeze it. Buzz it. Easy does it. Turn off the juice boy. Go, man, go. But not like a yo-yo school boy. Just play it cool boy. Real cool.
All right, I’ll say this: what this town owes Will Kane here can never be paid with money and don’t ever forget it. He’s the best marshall we ever had, may be the best marshall we’ll ever have. So if Miller comes back here today, it’s our problem not his. It’s our problem because this is our town. We made it with our own hands out of nothing, and if we want to keep it decent, keep it growing we gotta think mighty clear here today. And we gotta have the courage to do what we think is right! No matter how hard it is. All right. There’s gonna be fighting when Kane and Miller meet. And somebody’s gonna get hurt, that’s for sure. Now, people up North are thinking about this town, thinking mighty hard, thinking about sending money down here to put up stores and to building factories. It’ll mean a lot to this town, an awful lot; but if they’re gonna read about shooting and killing in the streets, what are they gonna think then? I’ll tell ya. They’re going to think this is just another wide open town. And everything we worked for will be wiped out. In one day, this town will be set back five years. And I don’t think we can let that happen. Mind you, you all know how I feel about this man. He’s a mighty brave man. A good man. He didn’t have to come back here today and for his sake and the sake of this town I wish he hadn’t. Because if he’s not here when Miller comes, my hunch is there wont be any trouble. Not one bit. Tomorrow we’ll have a new marshall and if we can all agree here to offer him our services, I think we can handle anything that comes along. To me that makes sense. To me thats the only way out of this. Will, I think you better go while there’s still time. It’s better for you and it’s better for us.
Triumph complete, Judah. The race won. The enemy destroyed. … What do you think you see? The smashed body of a wretched animal. There’s enough of a man still left here for you to hate. Let me help you. … You think they’re dead? Your mother and sister? Dead? And the race over? It isn’t over Judah. They’re not dead. … Look for them in the valley of the lepers. If you can recognize them. … It goes on. It goes on Judah. The race is not over.
Catherine Earnshaw, may you not rest so long as I live on! I killed you. Haunt me, then! Haunt your murderer! I know that ghosts have wandered on the Earth. Be with me always. Take any form, drive me mad, only do not leave me in this dark alone where I cannot find you. I cannot live without my life! I cannot die without my soul. … What do they know of heaven or hell, Cathy, who know nothing of life?
Yes, ten years have made another man of me. And why? Because I am overworked. Nurse, I am on my feet from morning until evening. I know no rest at all: at night I shake under my bedclothes for fear I’ll be dragged out to visit some sick people. Ever since I’ve known you, I haven’t had a single carefree day. How could I help growing old? Life is tedious, anyhow; it is a senseless, dirty business, and drags heavily. Every one in this neighborhood is silly, and after you live with them for two or three years you grow silly yourself. It is inevitable. See what a long moustache I have grown. A silly, long moustache. Yes, I am as silly as all the others, nurse, but not as stupid; no I have not grown stupid. Thank God, my brain is not muddled yet, though my feelings have grown dull. I ask for nothing, I need nothing, I love no one, except yourself alone. When I was a child, I had a nurse just like you. During the third week of Lent, an epidemic of eruptive typhoid broke out at Malitskoi, and I was called there. The peasants were all stretched side by side in their huts, and the calves and pigs were running about the floor among the sick. How filthy it was, and such smoke! Beyond words! I slaved among those people all day. I hadn’t a crumb to eat. But when I got home there was still no rest for me: a switchman was carried in from the railroad; I laid him on the operating table and he died in my arms under the chloroform. And then although my feelings should have been deadened, they rose again; my conscience tortured me as if I had murdered him. I sat down and shut my eyes–like this–and thought: will our descendants two hundred years from to-day, for whom we are breaking the path, remember us in a kindly spirit? No, nurse, they will forget.
I pray thee, give it me.
I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,
Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,
With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine:
There sleeps Titania sometime of the night,
Lull’d in these flowers with dances and delight;
And there the snake throws her enamell’d skin,
Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in:
And with the juice of this I’ll streak her eyes,
And make her full of hateful fantasies.
Take thou some of it, and seek through this grove:
A sweet Athenian lady is in love
With a disdainful youth: anoint his eyes;
But do it when the next thing he espies
May be the lady: thou shalt know the man
By the Athenian garments he hath on.
Effect it with some care, that he may prove
More fond on her than she upon her love:
And look thou meet me ere the first cock crow.
I’ve called you here as freeborn Englishmen, loyal to our king. While he reigned over us, we lived in peace. But since Prince John has seized the regency, Guy of Gisbourne and the rest of his traitors have murdered and pillaged. You’ve all suffered from their cruelty: the ear loppings, the beatings, the blindings with hot irons, the burning of our farms and homes, the mistreatment of our women. It’s time to put an end to this! Now, this forest is wide. It can shelter and clothe and feed a band of good, determined men, good swordsmen, good archers, good fighters. Men, if you’re willing to fight for our people, I want you! Are you with me? … That you, the freemen of this forest, swear to despoil the rich only to give to the poor, to shelter the old and the helpless, to protect all women rich or poor, Norman or Saxon. Swear to fight for a free England. To protect her loyally until the return of our King and sovereign Richard the Lion Heart. And swear to fight to the death against our oppressors!
I do much wonder that one man, seeing how much another man is a fool when he dedicates his behaviors to love, will, after he hath laughed at such shallow follies in others, become the argument of his own scorn by failing in love: and such a man is Claudio. I have known when there was no music with him but the drum and the fife; and now had he rather hear the tabour and the pipe: I have known when he would have walked ten mile a-foot to see a good armour; and now will he lie ten nights awake, carving the fashion of a new doublet. He was wont to speak plain and to the purpose, like an honest man and a soldier; and now is he turned orthography; his words are a very fantastical banquet, just so many strange dishes. May I be so converted and see with these eyes? I cannot tell; I think not: I will not be sworn, but love may transform me to an oyster; but I’ll take my oath on it, till he have made an oyster of me, he shall never make me such a fool. One woman is fair, yet I am well; another is wise, yet I am well; another virtuous, yet I am well; but till all graces be in one woman, one woman shall not come in my grace. Rich she shall be, that’s certain; wise, or I’ll none; virtuous, or I’ll never cheapen her; fair, or I’ll never look on her; mild, or come not near me; noble, or not I for an angel; of good discourse, an excellent musician, and her hair shall be of what colour it please God. Ha! the prince and Monsieur Love! I will hide me in the arbour.
If we shadows have offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
That you have but slumber’d here
While these visions did appear.
And this weak and idle theme,
No more yielding but a dream,
Gentles, do not reprehend:
if you pardon, we will mend:
And, as I am an honest Puck,
If we have unearned luck
Now to ‘scape the serpent’s tongue,
We will make amends ere long;
Else the Puck a liar call;
So, good night unto you all.
Give me your hands, if we be friends,
And Robin shall restore amends.
Father, the gods implant reason in men, the highest of all things that we call our own. Not mine the skill, far from me be the quest! To say wherein thou speakest not aright; and yet another man, too, might have some useful thought. At least, it is my natural office to watch, on thy behalf, all that men say, or do, or find to blame. For the dread of thy frown forbids the citizen to speak such words as would offend thine ear; but I can hear these murmurs in the dark, these moanings of the city for this maiden; “No woman,” they say, “ever merited her doom less, none ever was to die so shamefully for deeds so glorious as hers; who, when her own brother had fallen in bloody strife, would not leave him unburied, to be devoured by carrion dogs, or by any bird:–deserves not she the meed of golden honor?” Such is the darkling rumor that spreads in secret. For me, my father, no treasure is so precious as thy welfare. What, indeed, is a nobler ornament for children than a prospering sire’s fair fame, or for sire than son’s? Wear not, then, one mood only in thyself; think not that thy word, and thine alone, must be right. For if any man thinks that he alone is wise that in speech, or in mind, he hath no peer such a soul, when laid open, is ever found empty. No, though a man be wise, ’tis no shame for him to learn many things, and to bend in season. Seest thou, beside the wintry torrent’s course, how the trees that yield to it save every twig, while the stiff-necked perish root and branch? And even thus he who keeps the sheet of his sail taut, and never slackens it, upsets the boat, and finishes his voyage with keel uppermost. Nay, forego thy wrath; permit thyself to change. For if I, a younger man, may offer my thought, it were far best, I ween, that men should be all-wise by nature; but, otherwise and oft the scale inclines not so ’tis good also to learn from those who speak aright.
Sirs, the vessel of our state, after being tossed on wild waves, hath once more been safely steadied by the gods: and ye, out of all the folk, have been called apart by my summons, because I knew, first of all, how true and constant was your reverence for the royal power of Laius; how, again, when Oedipus was ruler of our land, and when he had perished, your steadfast loyalty still upheld their children. Since, then, his sons have fallen in one day by a twofold doom, each smitten by the other, each stained with a brother’s blood, I now possess the throne and all its powers, by nearness of kinship to the dead. No man can be fully known, in soul and spirit and mind, until he hath been seen versed in rule and law-giving. For if any, being supreme guide of the state, cleaves not to the best counsels, but, through some fear, keeps his lips locked, I hold, and have ever held, him most base; and if any makes a friend of more account than his fatherland, that man hath no place in my regard. For I, be Zeus my witness, who sees all things always, would not be silent if I saw ruin, instead of safety, coming to the citizens; nor would I ever deem the country’s foe a friend to myself; remembering this, that our country is the ship that bears us safe, and that only while she prospers in our voyage can we make true friends. Such are the rules by which I guard this city’s greatness. And in accord with them is the edict which I have now published to the folk touching the sons of Oedipus; that Eteocles, who hath fallen fighting for our city, in all renown of arms, shall be entombed, and crowned with every rite that follows the noblest dead to their rest. But for his brother, Polyneices who came back from exile, and sought to consume utterly with fire the city of his fathers and the shrines of his fathers’ gods–sought to taste of kindred blood, and to lead the remnant into slavery–touching this man, it hath been proclaimed to our people that none shall grace him with sepulture or lament, but leave him unburied, a corpse for birds and dogs to eat, a ghastly sight of shame.
We can’t strike. Why not? Because it’s against the law to strike! The king has declared that everything is a crime. Writing is a crime. Two weeks ago, the police destroyed the Galaty, the worker’s newspaper. They smashed the press. They burned over two thousand newspapers but that didn’t satisfy the king. Three days ago at a student meeting, a peaceful meeting, soldiers broke it up and arrested two of my friends. Writing, talking, going to class, speaking out is a crime. Being poor is a crime. Being poor is the worst crime of all. And if you commit these crimes, you are condemned for life. Our government has no mercy, no pity, no forgiveness. And there’s no work for us. And because there’s no work, our children are starving. Tell me: why are we powerless to save the people we love? All of you know. Tell me why? The king betrayed us. We were promised the vote, do we have it? Do we have the vote? Where is the republic our fathers died for? It’s here my brothers. It lives here in our heads. But most of all, best of all, it’s here in our hearts. In our hearts we are the Republic!
If music be the food of love, play on;
Give me excess of it, that, surfeiting,
The appetite may sicken, and so die.
That strain again! it had a dying fall:
O, it came o’er my ear like the sweet sound,
That breathes upon a bank of violets,
Stealing and giving odour! Enough; no more:
‘Tis not so sweet now as it was before.
O spirit of love! how quick and fresh art thou,
That, notwithstanding thy capacity
Receiveth as the sea, nought enters there,
Of what validity and pitch soe’er,
But falls into abatement and low price,
Even in a minute: so full of shapes is fancy
That it alone is high fantastical.
I didn’t go to the moon. I went much further, for time is the longest distance between two places. Not long after that I left St. Louis. I descended the steps of our fire escape for the last time and from then on I followed in my father’s footsteps attempting to find in motion what was lost in space. I traveled around a great deal. The city swept about me like dead leaves, leaves that were brightly colored but torn away from the branches. I would have stopped but I was pursued by something that always came upon me unawares taking me all together by surprise. Perhaps it was a familiar bit of music. Perhaps it was only a piece of transparent glass. Perhaps I’m walking along the street at night in some strange city before I have found companions. And I pass a lighted window of a shop where perfume is sold. Windows filled with pieces of colored glass. Tiny transparent bottles and delicate colors like bits of a shattered rainbow. Then all at once my sister touches my shoulder and I turn around and look into her eyes. … Laura. Laura. I tried so hard to leave you behind me but I am more faithful than I intended to be. I reach for a cigarette, I cross a street, I run to the movies or to a bar. I buy a drink. I speak to the nearest stranger. Anything that will blow your candles out. For nowadays the world is lit by lightning. Blow out your candles Laura. And so goodbye.
This play was good enough for us, Harry. It was Romeo and Juliet. I must admit that I was rather annoyed at the idea of seeing Shakespeare done in such a wretched hole of a place. Still, I felt interested, in a sort of way. At any rate, I determined to wait for the first act. There was a dreadful orchestra, presided over by a young Hebrew who sat at a cracked piano, that nearly drove me away, but at last the drop-scene was drawn up, and the play began. Romeo was a stout elderly gentleman, with corked eyebrows, a husky tragedy voice, and a figure like a beer-barrel. Mercutio was almost as bad. He was played by the low-comedian, who had introduced gags of his own and was on most friendly terms with the pit. They were both as grotesque as the scenery, and that looked as if it had come out of a country booth. But Juliet! Harry, imagine a girl, hardly seventeen years of age, with a little flower-like face, a small Greek head with plaited coils of dark-brown hair, eyes that were violet wells of passion, lips that were like the petals of a rose. She was the loveliest thing I had ever seen in my life. You said to me once that pathos left you unmoved, but that beauty, mere beauty, could fill your eyes with tears. I tell you, Harry, I could hardly see this girl for the mist of tears that came across me. And her voice–I never heard such a voice. It was very low at first, with deep, mellow notes, that seemed to fall singly upon one’s ear. Then it became a little louder, and sounded like a flute or a distant hautbois. In the garden scene it had all the tremulous ecstasy that one hears just before dawn when nightingales are singing. There were moments, later on, when it had the wild passion of violets. You know how a voice can stir one. Your voice and the voice of Sibyl Vane are two things that I shall never forget. When I close my eyes, I hear them, and each of them says something different. I don’t know which to follow. Why should I not love her? Harry, I do love her. She is everything to me in life. Night after night I go to see her play. One evening she is Rosalind, and the next evening she is Imogen. I have seen her die in the gloom of an Italian tomb, sucking the poison from her lover’s lips. I have watched her wandering through the forest of Arden, disguised as a pretty boy in hose and doublet and dainty cap. She has been mad, and has come into the presence of a guilty king, and given him rue to wear, and bitter herbs to taste of. She has been innocent, and the black hands of jealousy have crushed her reed-like throat. I have seen her in every age and in every costume. Ordinary women never appeal to one’s imagination. They are limited to their century. No glamour ever transfigures them. One knows their minds as easily as one knows their bonnets. One can always find them. There is no mystery in any of them. They ride in the Park in the morning, and chatter at tea-parties in the afternoon. They have their stereotyped smile, and their fashionable manner. They are quite obvious. But an actress! How different an actress is! Harry! why didn’t you tell me that the only thing worth loving is an actress?”
Peace! Speak not to me! Salome, I pray thee be not stubborn. I have ever been kind toward thee. I have ever loved thee. It may be that I have loved thee too much. Therefore ask not this thing of me. This is a terrible thing, an awful thing to ask of me. Surely, thou art jesting. The head of a man … cut from his body … is ill to look upon. It is not meet that the eyes of a virgin should look upon such a thing. What pleasure couldst thou have in it? No, no, it is not that thou desirest. Hearken to me. I have an emerald, a great emerald and round, that the minion of Caesar has sent unto me. When thou lookest through this emerald thou canst see that which passeth afar off. Caesar himself carries such an emerald when he goes to the circus. But my emerald is the larger. I know well that it is the larger. It is the largest emerald in the whole world. Thou wilt take that, wilt thou not? Ask it of me and I will give it thee. [Pause.] I have jewels hidden in this place — jewels that thy mother even has never seen, jewels that are marvelous to look at. I have a collar of pearls, set in four rows. They are like unto moons chained with rays of silver. They are even as half a hundred moons caught in a gold net. On the ivory breast of a queen they have rested. Thou shalt be as fair as a queen when thou wearest them. I have amethysts of two kinds; one that is black like wine, and one that is red like wine that one has colored with water. I have topazes yellow as are the eyes of tigers, and topazes that are pink as the eyes of a wood-pigeon, and green topazes that are as the eyes of cats. I have opals that burn always, with a flame that is cold as ice, opals that make sad men’s minds, and are afraid of the shadows. I have onyxes like the eyeballs of a dead woman. I have moonstones that change when the moon changes, and are wan when they see the sun. I have sapphires big like eggs, and as blue as blue flowers. The sea wanders within them, and the moon comes never to trouble the blue of their waves. I have chrysolites and beryls, and chrysoprases and rubies; I have sardonyx and hyacinth stones, and stones of chalcedony, and I will give them all unto thee, all, and other things will I add to them. The King of the Indies has but even now sent me four fans fashioned from the feathers of parrots, and the King of Numidia a garment of ostrich feathers. I have a crystal, into which it is not lawful for a woman to look, nor may young men behold it until they have been beaten with rods. In a coffer of nacre I have three wondrous turquoises. He who wears them on his forehead can imagine things which are not, and he who carries them in his hand can turn the fruitful woman into a woman that is barren. These are great treasures. They are treasures above all price. But this is not all. In an ebony coffer I have two cups of amber that are like apples of pure gold. If an enemy pour poison into these cups they become like apples of silver. In a coffer incrusted with amber I have sandals incrusted with glass. I have mantles that have been brought from the land of the Seres, and bracelets decked about with carbuncles and with jade that come from the city of Euphrates. What desirest thou more than this, Salome? Tell me the thing that thou desirest, and I will give it thee. All that thou askest I will, save one thing only. I will give thee all that is mine, save only the life of one man. I will give thee the mantle of the high priest. I will give thee the veil of the sanctuary. Only thou must loose me from my oath, and must not ask of me that which thy lips have asked.
This bronze. Yes, now’s the moment; I’m looking at this thing on the mantelpiece, and I understand that I’m in Hell. I tell you, everything’s been thought out beforehand. They knew I’d stand at the fireplace, stroking this thing of bronze, with all those eyes intent on me. Devouring me. What? Only two of you? I thought there were more; many more. So this is Hell. I’d never have believed it. You remember all we were told about the torture-chambers, the fire and brimstone, the “burning marl.” Old wives’ tales! There’s no need for red-hot pokers. Hell is other people!
All hail great master! grave sir, hail! I come
To answer thy best pleasure; be’t to fly,
To swim, to dive into the fire, to ride
On the curl’d clouds, to thy strong bidding task
Ariel and all his quality.
Perform’d to point the tempest thy bade me.
I boarded the king’s ship; now on the beak,
Now in the waist, the deck, in every cabin,
I flam’d amazement: sometime I’d divide,
And burn in many places; on the topmast,
The yards and boresprit, would I flame distinctly,
Then meet, and join. Jove’s lightnings, the precursors
O’ th’ dreadful thunder-claps, more momentary
And sight-outrunning were not: the fire and cracks
Of sulphurous roaring the most mighty Neptune
Seem to besiege, and make his bold waves tremble,
Yea, his dead trident shake!!
Not a soul but felt a fever of the mad, and play’d
Some tricks of desperation. All but mariners
Plung’d in the foaming brine, and quit the vessel,
Then all afire with me: the King’s son, Ferdinand,
With hair-upstaring,-then like reeds, not hair-
Was the first man that leap’d, cried, “Hell is empty,
And all the devils are here!”
No, madam, there is no need for a stick, but only a heart less yielding and less melting at their love-tales. I am aware that your good looks accompany you, go where you will; but your reception retains those whom your eyes attract; and that gentleness, accorded to those who surrender their arms, finishes on their hearts the sway which your charms began. The too agreeable expectation which you offer them increases their assiduities towards you; and your complacency, a little less extended, would drive away the great crowd of so many admirers. But, tell me, at least, madam, by what good fortune Clitandre has the happiness of pleasing you so mightily? Upon what basis of merit and sublime virtue do you ground the honour of your regard for him?
She loves me, she loves me not; she loves me, she loves me not; she loves me, she loves me not. You see? My mother doesn’t love me. Of course not! She wants to live, to love, to wear bright dresses, and here I am, twenty-five years old, a constant reminder that she is no longer young. When I’m not there, she’s only thirty-two, but when I am, she’s forty-three – and for that, she hates me. Besides, she knows I don’t accept the theatre. She loves the theatre, she thinks she is serving humanity and the sacred cause of art, while in my opinion, the theatre of today is hidebound and conventional. When the curtain goes up, and, in a room with three walls and artificial light, those great geniuses, those priests of holy art, show me how people eat, drink, love, walk about, and wear their jackets; when from those banal scenes and phrases they try to fish out a moral – some little moral that is easily grasped and suitable for domestic use; when, in a thousand variations, I am served the same thing over and over and over again – then I flee, as Maupassant fled from the Eiffel Tower, which made his brain reel with vulgarity.
I suppose I am dreadfully guilty, but my thoughts are muddled, my soul is in the grip of a kind of apathy, and I am no longer able to understand myself. I don’t understand myself or other people. I should like to tell you everything from the beginning, but it’s a long story, and such a complicated one that if I talked till morning I couldn’t finish it. Anna is a remarkable, an extraordinary woman… She changed her religion for my sake, left her father and mother, gave up wealth, and if I had asked her for a hundred more sacrifices, she would have made them without batting an eye. But, you see, I am in no way remarkable, and I have sacrificed nothing. However, that’s a long story. The whole point is that to put it briefly, I was passionately in love with her when I married, and swore that I would love her forever, but… Five years have passed, she still loves me, but I… Here you tell me that she is going to die soon, and I feel neither love nor pity, but only a sort of emptiness and lassitude. To anyone looking at me this must seem appalling; I myself don’t understand what is happening within my soul.
We climbed beyond the utmost habitings
Of Theban shepherds, passed Asopus’ springs,
And struck into the land of rock on dim
Cithaeron — Pentheus, and, attending him,
I, and the Stranger who should guide our way.
Then first in a green dell we stopped, and lay,
Lips dumb and feet unmoving, warily
Watching, to be unseen and yet to see.
A narrow glen it was, by crags o’ertowered,
Torn through by tossing waters, and there lowered
A shadow of great pines over it. And there
The Maenad maidens sate; in toil they were,
Busily glad. Some with an ivy chain
Tricked a worn wand to toss its locks again;
Some, wild in joyance, like young steeds set free,
Made answering songs of mystic melody.
But my poor master saw not the great band
Before him. “Stranger,” cried he, “where we stand
Mine eyes can reach not these false saints of thine.
Mount we the bank, or some high-shouldered pine,
And I shall see their follies clear!” At that
There came a marvel. For the Stranger straight
Touched a great pine-tree’s high and heavenward crown,
And lower, lower, lower, urged it down
To the herbless floor. Round like a bending bow,
Or slow wheel’s rim a joiner forces to,
So in those hands that tough and mountain stem
Bowed slow — oh, strength not mortal dwelt in them!–
To the very earth. And there he sat the King,
And slowly, lest it cast him in its spring,
Let back the young and straining tree, till high
It towered again amid the towering sky;
And Pentheus in the branches! Well, I ween,
He saw the Maenads then, and well was seen!
For scarce was he aloft, when suddenly
There was no Stranger any more with me,
But out of Heaven a Voice — oh, what voice else? —
‘Twas He that called! “Behold, O damsels,
I bring ye him who turneth to despite
Both me and ye, and darkeneth my great Light.
‘Tis yours to avenge!” So spake he, and there came
‘Twixt earth and sky a pillar of high flame.
And silence took the air, and no leaf stirred
In all the forest dell. Thou hadst not heard
In that vast silence any wild thing’s cry.
And up they sprang; but with bewildered eye,
Agaze and listening, scarce yet hearing true.
Then came the Voice again. And when they knew
Their God’s clear call, old Cadmus’ royal brood,
Up, like wild pigeons startled in a wood,
On flying feet they came, his mother blind,
Agave, and her sisters, and behind
All the wild crowd, more deeply maddened then,
Through the angry rocks and torrent-tossing glen,
Until they spied him in the dark pine-tree:
Then climbed a crag hard by and furiously
Some sought to stone him, some their wands would fling
Lance-wise aloft, in cruel targeting.
But none could strike. The height o’ertopped their rage,
And there he clung, unscathed, as in a cage
Caught. And of all their strife no end was found.
Then, “Hither,” cried Agave; “stand we round
And grip the stem, my Wild Ones, till we take
This climbing cat-o’-the-mount! He shall not make
A tale of God’s high dances!” Out then shone
Arm upon arm, past count, and closed upon
The pine, and gripped; and the ground gave, and down
It reeled. And that high sitter from the crown
Of the green pine-top, with a shrieking cry
Fell, as his mind grew clear, and there hard by
Was horror visible. ‘Twas his mother stood
O’er him, first priestess of those rites of blood.
He tore the coif, and from his head away
Flung it, that she might know him, and not slay
To her own misery. He touched the wild
Cheek, crying: “Mother, it is I, thy child,
Thy Pentheus, born thee in Echion’s hall!
Have mercy, Mother! Let it not befall
Through sin of mine, that thou should’st slay thy son!”
But she, with lips a-foam and eyes that run
Like leaping fire, with thoughts that ne’er should be
On earth, possessed by Bacchios utterly,
Stays not nor hears. Round his left arm she put
Both hands, set hard against his side her foot,
Drew . . . and the shoulder severed! — Not by might
Of arm, but easily, as the God made light
Her hand’s essay. And at the other side
Was Ino rending; and the torn flesh cried,
And on Autonie pressed, and all the crowd
Of ravening arms. Yea, all the air was loud
With groans that faded into sobbing breath,
Dim shrieks, and joy, and triumph-cries of death.
And here was borne a severed arm, and there
A hunter’s booted foot; white bones lay bare
With rending; and swift hands ensanguinèd
Tossed as in sport the flesh of Pentheus dead.
His body lies afar. The precipice
Hath part, and parts in many an interstice
Lurk of the tangled woodland — no light quest
To find. And, ah, the head! Of all the rest,
His mother hath it, pierced upon a wand,
As one might pierce a lion’s, and through the land,
Leaving her sisters in their dancing place,
Bears it on high! Yea, to these walls her face
Was set, exulting in her deed of blood,
Calling upon her Bromios, her God,
Her Comrade, Fellow-Render of the Prey,
Her All-Victorious, to whom this day
She bears in triumph . . . her own broken heart!
For me, after that sight, I will depart
Before Agave comes. — Oh, to fulfill
God’s laws, and have no thought beyond His will,
Is man’s best treasure. Aye, and wisdom true,
Methinks, for things of dust to cleave unto!
I did. I bought it. Wait a bit; don’t hurry me; my head’s in a whirl; I can’t speak. . . . [Laughing.] When we got to the sale, Deriganof was there already. Leonid Andreyitch had only fifteen hundred pounds, and Deriganof bid three thousand more than the mortgage right away. When I saw how things stood, I went for him and bid four thousand. He said four thousand five hundred. I said five thousand five hundred. He went up by five hundreds, you see, and I went up by thousands. . . . Well, it was soon over. I bid nine thousand more than the mortgage, and got it; and now the cherry orchard is mine! Mine! [Laughing.] Heavens alive! Just think of it! The cherry orchard is mine! Tell me that I’m drunk; tell me that I’m off my head; tell me that it’s all a dream! . . . [Stamping his feet.] Don’t laugh at me! If only my father and my grandfather could rise from their graves and see the whole affair, how their Yermolai, their flogged and ignorant Yermolai, who used to run about barefooted in the winter, how this same Yermolai had bought a property that hasn’t its equal for beauty anywhere in the whole world! I have bought the property where my father and grandfather were slaves, where they weren’t even allowed into the kitchen. I’m asleep, it’s only a vision, it isn’t real. . . . ‘T is the fruit of imagination, wrapped in the mists of ignorance. [Picking up Madame Ranevsky’s keys and smiling affectionately.] She’s thrown down her keys; she wants to show that she’s no longer mistress here. . . . [Jingles them together.] Well, well, what’s the odds? Hey, musicians play! I want to hear you. Come, every one, and see Yermolai Lopakhin lay his axe to the cherry orchard, come and see the trees fall down! We’ll fill the place with villas; our grandsons and great-grandsons shall see a new life here. . . . Strike up, music! Here comes the new squire, the owner of the cherry orchard!
How all occasions do inform against me
And spur my dull revenge! What is a man,
If his chief good and market of his time
Be but to sleep and feed? A beast, no more.
Sure he that made us with such large discourse,
Looking before and after, gave us not
That capability and godlike reason
To fust in us unus’d. Now, whether it be
Bestial oblivion, or some craven scruple
Of thinking too precisely on th’ event,-
A thought which, quarter’d, hath but one part wisdom
And ever three parts coward,- I do not know
Why yet I live to say ‘This thing’s to do,’
Sith I have cause, and will, and strength, and means
To do’t. Examples gross as earth exhort me.
Witness this army of such mass and charge,
Led by a delicate and tender prince,
Whose spirit, with divine ambition puff’d,
Makes mouths at the invisible event,
Exposing what is mortal and unsure
To all that fortune, death, and danger dare,
Even for an eggshell. Rightly to be great
Is not to stir without great argument,
But greatly to find quarrel in a straw
When honour’s at the stake. How stand I then,
That have a father kill’d, a mother stain’d,
Excitements of my reason and my blood,
And let all sleep, while to my shame I see
The imminent death of twenty thousand men
That for a fantasy and trick of fame
Go to their graves like beds, fight for a plot
Whereon the numbers cannot try the cause,
Which is not tomb enough and continent
To hide the slain? O, from this time forth,
My thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth!
If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well
It were done quickly: if the assassination
Could trammel up the consequence, and catch
With his surcease success; that but this blow
Might be the be-all and the end-all here,
But here, upon this bank and shoal of time,
We’ld jump the life to come. But in these cases
We still have judgment here; that we but teach
Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return
To plague the inventor: this even-handed justice
Commends the ingredients of our poison’d chalice
To our own lips. He’s here in double trust;
First, as I am his kinsman and his subject,
Strong both against the deed; then, as his host,
Who should against his murderer shut the door,
Not bear the knife myself. Besides, this Duncan
Hath borne his faculties so meek, hath been
So clear in his great office, that his virtues
Will plead like angels, trumpet-tongued, against
The deep damnation of his taking-off;
And pity, like a naked new-born babe,
Striding the blast, or heaven’s cherubim, horsed
Upon the sightless couriers of the air,
Shall blow the horrid deed in every eye,
That tears shall drown the wind. I have no spur
To prick the sides of my intent, but only
Vaulting ambition, which o’erleaps itself
And falls on the other.
O king! thou seest what numbers throng thy altars;
Here, bending sad beneath the weight of years,
The hoary priests, here crowd the chosen youth
Of Thebes, with these a weak and suppliant train
Of helpless infants, last in me behold
The minister of Jove: far off thou seest
Assembled multitudes, with laurel crowned,
To where Minerva’s hallowed temples rise
Frequent repair, or where Ismenus laves
Apollo’s sacred shrine: too well thou knowst
Thy wretched Thebes, with dreadful storms oppressed,
Scarce lifts her head above the whelming flood;
The teeming earth her blasted harvest mourns,
And on the barren plain the flocks and herds
Unnumbered perish; dire abortion thwarts
The mother’s hopes, and painful she brings forth
The half-formed infant; baleful pestilence
Hath laid our city waste, the fiery god
Stalks o’er deserted Thebes; while with our groans
Enriched, the gloomy god of Erebus
Triumphant smiles. O Oedipus! to thee
We bend; behold these youths, with me they kneel,
And suppliant at they altars sue for aid,
To thee the first of men, and only less
Than them whose favour thou alone canst gain,
The gods above; thy wisdom yet may heal
The deep-felt wounds, and make the powers divine
Propitous to us. Thebes long since to thee
Her safety owed, when from the Sphinx delivered
Thy grateful people saw thee, not by man
But by the gods instructed, save the land:
Now then, thou best of kings, assist us now.
Oh! by some mortal or immortal aid
Now succour the distress! On wisdom oft,
And prudent counsels in the hour of ill,
Success awaits. O dearest prince! support,
Relieve thy Thebes; on thee, its saviour once,
Again it calls. Now, if thou wouldst not see
The mem’ry perish of thy former deeds,
Let it not call in vain, but rise and save!
With happiest omens once and fair success
We saw thee crowned: oh, be thyself again,
And may thy will and fortune be the same!
If thou art yet to reign, O king! remember
A sovereign’s riches is a peopled realm;
For what will ships or lofty towers avail
Unarmed with men to guard and to defend them?
Now hast thou but one bare hour to live,
And then thou must be damn’d perpetually!
Stand still, you ever-moving spheres of heaven,
That time may cease, and midnight never come;
Fair Nature’s eye, rise, rise again, and make
Perpetual day; or let this hour be but
A year, a month, a week, a natural day,
That Faustus may repent and save his soul!
O lente, lente currite, noctis equi!
The stars move still, time runs, the clock will strike,
The devil will come, and Faustus must be damn’d.
O, I’ll leap up to my God!–Who pulls me down?–
See, see, where Christ’s blood streams in the firmament!
One drop would save my soul, half a drop: ah, my Christ!–
Ah, rend not my heart for naming of my Christ!
Yet will I call on him: O, spare me, Lucifer!–
Where is it now? tis gone: and see, where God
Stretcheth out his arm, and bends his ireful brows!
Mountains and hills, come, come, and fall on me,
And hide me from the heavy wrath of God!
Then will I headlong run into the earth:
Earth, gape! O, no, it will not harbour me!
You stars that reign’d at my nativity,
Whose influence hath alotted death and hell,
Now draw up Faustus, like a foggy mist,
Into the entrails of yon labouring clouds,
That, when you vomit forth into the air,
My limbs may issue from your smoky mouths,
So that my soul may but ascend to heaven!
Ah, half the hour is past! ’twill all be past anon.
If thou wilt not have mercy on my soul,
Yet for Christ’s sake, whose blood hath ransom’d me,
Impose some end to my incessant pain;
Let Faustus live in hell a thousand years,
A hundred thousand, and at last be sav’d!
O, no end is limited to damned souls!
Why wert thou not a creature wanting soul?
Or why is this immortal that thou hast?
Ah, Pythagoras’ metempsychosis, were that true,
This soul should fly from me, and I be chang’d
Unto some brutish beast! all beasts are happy,
For, when they die,
Their souls are soon dissolv’d in elements;
But mine must live still to be plagu’d in hell.
Curs’d be the parents that engender’d me!
No, Faustus, curse thyself, curse Lucifer
That hath depriv’d thee of the joys of heaven.
O, it strikes, it strikes! Now, body, turn to air,
Or Lucifer will bear thee quick to hell!
O soul, be chang’d into little water-drops,
And fall into the ocean, ne’er be found!
My God, my God, look not so fierce on me!
Adders and serpents, let me breathe a while!
Ugly hell, gape not! come not, Lucifer!
I’ll burn my books!
All is lost!
This foul Egyptian hath betrayed me:
My fleet hath yielded to the foe, and yonder
They cast their caps up and carouse together
Like friends long lost. Triple-turned whore! ’tis thou
Has sold me to this novice, and my heart
Makes only wars on thee. Bid them all fly;
For when I am revenged upon my charm,
I have done all. Bid them all fly, begone.
O sun, thy uprise shall I see no more.
Fortune and Antony part here, even here
Do we shake hands. All come to this? The hearts
That spanieled me at heels, to whom I gave
Their wishes, do discandy, melt their sweets
On blossoming Caesar; and this pine is barked,
That overtopped them all. Betrayed I am.
O this false soul of Egypt! this grave charm,
Whose eye becked forth my wars, and called them home,
Whose bosom was my crownet, my chief end,
Like a right gypsy hath at fast and loose
Beguiled me to the very heart of loss.
What, Eros, Eros!
Ah, thou spell! Avaunt!
Vanish, or I shall give thee thy deserving
And blemish Caesar’s triumph. Let him take thee
And hoist thee up to the shouting plebeians;
Follow his chariot, like the greatest spot
Of all thy sex. Most monster-like be shown
For poor’st diminitives, for dolts, and let
Patient Octavia plough thy visage up
With her preparèd nails.
‘Tis well th’ art gone,
If it be well to live; but better ’twere
Thou fell’st into my fury, for one death
Might have prevented many. Eros, ho!
The shirt of Nessus is upon me; teach me,
Alcides, thou mine ancestor, thy rage.
Let me lodge Lichas on the horns o’ th’ moon
And with those hands that grasped the heaviest club
Subdue my worthiest self. The witch shall die.
To the young Roman boy she hath sold me, and I fall
Under his plot: she dies for ‘t. Eros, ho!