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The Moment


Table of Contents › Essays & Plays ›

Craig Thornton

A WOMAN, somewhere between 20 and 70 years of age, sits in a chair. A MAN stands behind her, a distance away. She senses someone watching her and sneaks glances over her shoulder.

WOMAN

My God. Act natural. Like nothing is wrong. He'll go away.

(Pause, she sneaks a quick glance behind her.)

Oh My God. Still there. What does he want? I should run. Fast. Very Fast. Bionic Woman Fast.

(Closes her eyes.)

One - Two - Three - Four - Five.

(She checks behind her again; he takes a step closer.)

Shit. He's getting closer. Did you see that? Shit. What am I supposed to do? There is something. Something I'm supposed to do when this happens. Something. Think. Stranger. Close. Don't talk. Don't talk to strangers. What did I learn in Girl Scouts? You know about safety? Tourniquet. I need a tourniquet.

(She sneaks another glance. He takes another step.)

WHOA! This is creepy. Okay, enough. I'm getting up. I'm moving. My life is at stake. My very being is in trouble. My aura is getting dark. My soul, my presence, is in jeopardy.

(She tries to get up but can't move.)

Oh-Oh. Oh-Oh!

(She tries again but seems to be stuck in the chair.)

What. What? Is there glue? Who put glue on this chair? I'm in third grade. All over again. I'm not in real life. I'm someplace else.

(He moves a step closer. She spins around to confront him.)

Who are you? What do you want from me? What am I supposed to do with you? With us? Who are you? I'm worried. I'm very worried. Too worried. Perpetually, continually, eternally, everlastingly, ceaselessly, and forever worried.

MAN

I am theater. I am life. I am pain. I am joy. I am here. I am gone. But I come again. Will you be ready? Can you know me? Can you understand me? I move from here to there. I am a measure of time, but no one knows what time that is. I am not 60 seconds. I can be, but not always. Sometimes I am a few seconds. I am love. I am fleeting. I come. I go. I am Here. There. I am yesterday. I am today. I am tomorrow. I am theater. Always theater. I am the moment.

WOMAN

I'm scared of you. I'm always scared. Go away. Please go away. I don't know what to do. I'm worried again, about you. About it all. Go away.

MAN

I can't.

WOMAN

Please.

MAN

Let me embrace you.

HE embraces her. End of play.