(Add this to the Countreie Matters discard pile: a scene-openiong monologue that stops the play dead:)
“You fought a battle and he won. He won her.”
Well he can have her. I will not be my uncle
And steal another man’s wife. I will not steal
Another man’s wife if she were Helen of Troy.
I will do nothing. And the world will think
That I am weak and must be pigeon-hearted.
Tomorrow the King of Denmark shall be married
And Hamlet takes a wife. By doing nothing.
If the King turns and runs away? He is
A coward. And if Hamlet stands and thinks
“All will be well?” Then he too is a coward.
So what is bravery then, when saying no
And saying yes are the twin children of
Timidity? Is valor in the act
Itself? Is heroism standing up
When lower men sit down, or charging forward
When slower mean hang back? It is the man
Who moves that the world looks up to –- the man
Of action who’s courageous, not the man
Who silent stands and lets the moment pass
Like Hamlet. Who can I be but myself?
I’m not a man who dares death for an eggshell.
I am a man who thinks about the egg,
The chicken, the barnyard, the farmer --
The history of agriculture and
The cumulative effects of drought and flooding
On crop rotation. And then dreams about
The farmer’s wife, like she was Helen of Troy.
copyright 2008 Matthew J Wells