He wont remember he read this to me. I try not to think of this as something sad.
|From: This Isn't A Horror Story|
This is the beginning of the play, read on...
The full text of This Isn't A Horror Story and other plays can be purchased at http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/matthewaeverett.
This Isn't A Horror Story is included in Short Plays Volume 4: http://www.lulu.com/shop/matthew-everett/short-plays-volume-4/paperback/product-22551281.html
Copyright 2015 by Matthew A. Everett
Lights shift. The recent past. DAD, after the first scene but still before the stroke, walks under his own power and picks up an old Bible.
DAD opens the Bible, pulls out two handwritten sheets of paper, folded up together three times over, unfolds them, and begins to read aloud.
DAVID stands off to the side in another pool of light.
DADWho? Me? Scared? - draft 6 - by David Evans
DAVIDMy father has no short-term memory any more.
DADWeve all been scared at some point in our lives.
DAVIDHe remembers the past, he remembers the immediate family. But in the present hes a blank slate. Like a computer that reboots every 15 minutes.
DADWhen we were little we were afraid of the dark or afraid of strangers.
DAVIDMy stepmother acts as his short-term memory now.
DADAs we grew up, so did our fears.
DOROTHY appears in DAD's part of the scene.
DOROTHYYou should get your cane.
DADGoing to a party where we dont know anyone is a bit frightening in a nervous sort of way.
DAVIDHis weekly memory group meeting would send them home with excerpts and summaries of medical articles " Is Alzheimers really Type III diabetes?
DADAnd fear was certainly in control during our first job interview.
DOROTHYYou should put on a coat.
DADNow that were graduating we are being faced with fears that will determine how we live the rest of our lives.
DAVIDIt makes me want to cut sugar out of my diet entirely and start putting virgin coconut oil in everything I eat.
DADAll the important concerns in our minds come down to the fear of risk.
DOROTHYYou should put on a hat.
DADEverything we do from now on is a risk.
DAVIDLast Christmas, the Christmas before the stroke, on two sheets of paper, folded up, tucked inside his Bible, my father found the speech I made at my high school graduation " over thirty years ago.
(for once, not reading from the sheets of paper)My professor in seminary told us, if something is important to you, tuck it away in your Bible. That way it will never get lost.
DOROTHYDid you remember to put on your Depends with your underwear this morning when you got dressed?
(reading from the pages again)Life is taking chances.
DAVIDHe sat down and proceeded to read me the speech.
DADOur parents, teachers and friends wont be around as much anymore to help us.
DOROTHYDo you need to go to the bathroom before we get in the car?
DADWe have to take the risks now, alone.
DAVIDIt made him very happy.
DADTheres the risk of picking our career.
DOROTHYYou should drink some water.
DADIn choosing it we risk our future happiness in the hope that we will find that job satisfying and fulfilling.
DAVIDHe didnt need help with it but once.
DAD gets to the end of one page and gets lost.
DAVID (contd)Theres more on the other side, you just need to flip that page over.
DAD sees this, smiles, and continues.
DADTraining for a career we dont enjoy is a waste of our education and working life.
DOROTHYYou should eat something.
DADThe waste of so much of our lives is the immense risk taken in just choosing our vocation.
DAVIDHe wont remember he read this to me.
DADOnce we have our job, decisions must still be made every day. A mistake can ruin our chances to improve our position.
DOROTHYYou need to take these pills.
DADAnd then there are relationships - friends, co-workers, someone to share our lives with.
DAVIDI try not to think of this as something sad.
DADNo matter what kind of relationship we enter into, theres always tremendous danger - of betrayal or hate or pain.
DAVIDIt might be sad for me. But its not sad for him.
DADBut the only alternative to reaching out is remaining isolated.
DAVIDHell tuck the two sheets of paper back in his Bible. And every now and then hell discover the speech again. And it will give him a little moment of joy, fresh as if it had never happened before.
DADWere going to be encountering whole new groups of people. Strangers.
DAVIDAnd at this point in his life, still having those little moments of joy, thats pretty great.
DADWe have to start all our relationships from scratch again.
Copyright 2015 by Matthew A. Everett