Friday, 18 February 2011

Ants and Lovers - Monologue for performance

MELANIE appears from stage right and tentatively makes her way towards centre stage. She smoothes down the fabric of her dress and stares at her feet.

                                    Carried away by an army of ants.
                                                (she looks up)
                                    That's what the coroner's report said. No mention
                                    of what they did to him. Just that he was carried
                                    away. He wasn't seen again.
                                                (she smiles and looks down)
                                    I'm not smiling at the obvious comedy within that
                                    statement. I'm smiling to fight the tears.
                                                (she looks up)
                                    You don't fight fire with a burning torch, you use
                                    water. For grief; laughter, until that laughter turns
                                    to tears. He was mine was Eric. We were each
                                    others. Swept away by the romance of each
                                    other's eyes. The secrets we shared. The private
                                    obsession with Brideshead Revisited that we
                                    were playing out that day by picnicking in our
                                    whitest linen clothes, basking in the glorious, camp
                                    sunshine. Admiring each other's creases, the plait
                                    of my dress excited him. It was the finely handled
                                    linen against my smooth skin that inspired him to
                                    pick a strawberry from our basket and delicately
                                    rub it on my cheek.
                                                (she touches her cheek)
                                    An excuse to lick of the residual juice.
                                                (she smiles)
                                    Any passers by wouldn't have baulked at this.
                                    Wouldn't have batted an eyelid
                                                (she stops)
                                    Oh but the thrill I felt; his soft lips on my warm
                                    cheek; sweat mixed with strawberry pulp - an
                                    animal vegetable passion. And then I decided to
                                    halt him in his throes, to take a walk alone over to
                                    an apple tree so I could still my beating heart and
                                    find the inner strength to return his all consuming
                                                (she turns around and looks back)
                                    They call it the lovers break. It intensifies the
                                                (she turns back around)
                                    I leant against the old apple tree, rejoicing in the
                                    shade; savouring my solitude, knowing that the
                                    ache would be swiftly quenched by his eager hunt.
                                    A game of kiss chase between two. Though I
                                    wasn't running. I was waiting. And then he was
                                    gone. Nowhere to be seen. For ten seconds it
                                    gave me an electric thrill. To think he would allow
                                    my lonliness to be drawn out for even longer, I
                                    anticipated his rough, unannounced arrival. But it
                                    never came. Carried away by ants they said.
                                                (she wipes away a tear)
                                    They're stronger than you think.

Melanie lowers her head, turns around slowly and exits stage left.

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