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Allusions and Illusions

A Collection of Plays, Short Fiction, Fragmented Memoirs, Poems and Songs

By Colleen Kellogg

Allusions and Illusions - Cover.jpg
 

Photographs and Paintings by Colleen Kellogg

 

Colleen Kellogg is a jazz, blues, folk and pop singer-lyricist, award winning playwright, artist and aspiring screenwriter. She recorded her album “Unrequited” in 2006 and 2008. You can buy her digital album on iTunes, Amazon and Google, or listen to it on Facebook and Reverb Nation. She has written about 1,000 songs and poems combined and is working on creating new albums, memoirs, plays, screenplays and graphic novels. Her plays have been published in magazines and conferences throughout the United States.

 

P1100342.JPG

Photo of Colleen Kellogg - 2014

 

 

 

Allusions and Illusions

is dedicated to Ross with Love.

 

 

Table of Contents

Allusive Plays

American Afterlife – A Ten Minute Play

All-American Woman – A Ten Minute Play

Existential Dilemma – A Thirteen and a Half Minute Play

Ascended Masters and Goddesses – A Fifteen Minute Play

Morningstar Allusions

Last Call – A Ten-Minute Play

I AM/I WILL – A Ten-Minute Play

Coming to Being – A Ten Minute Play

Let the Devil Speak - Flash Fiction

Comfort in the Arms of B_ - Short Story

Illusions of Love and Life – Monologues and Plays

Row, Row Monologues

-Ross

-Lada

Jamie Can’t Talk Now – A Ten-Minute Play

Bad Hair Day – A Ten-Minute Play

The Daymare –A One Act Play

Driving Sideways – A One Act Play

Fragments – Short and Fragmented Mini-Memoirs

Family

The Big Dance

The Sky Has Taken Over

The Moon and Me

Trance of the Moon - Lyrics
Will You Wash Away the Moon? - Lyrics

Life is But a Dream

Worlds Fall Away - Lyrics
Silly Girl - Lyrics

Divine Love Dance (Sense of Place Essay)

Ode to Picking Grass with My Toes - Lyrics

Scantily Clad

Joseph
First Love
Little White Line
July 24th
Not Him
Something Borrowed; Something Blue
The Boxer
A Beautiful Whore
Ryan

2015

Universe

 

 

 

 

 

Allusive Plays

 

American Afterlife

An Almost Ten-Minute Play

American Afterlife by Colleen Kelloggalludes to characters in the plays Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller, and Glengarry Glen Ross by David Mamet, as well as F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short story “Winter Dreams.”

 

Cast of Characters

DEXTER.....a confident, intelligent, and wise, businessman (50)

WILLIE.......a lowly, down on his luck, failed businessman (65)

HOPE......... an angel, supermodel, and receptionist (looks 29)

DAVE....an overly confident, impatient, crooked businessman (50)

SHELLY.........a naïve, loveable, crooked businessman (late-70s)

 

 

TIME: Infinity

PLACE: The Abyss. Heaven. Bardo. Limbo.

SETTING: The scene takes place in a waiting room in Heaven or Bardo/the transitional state between death and rebirth.

 

 

 

 

 

(LIGHTS UP.)

 

(Beyond Space and Time.)

 

(The Abyss. Heaven. Limbo. Bardo. Waiting room with clouds. A line of people dressed in white, filing off stage. A reception desk made out of clouds and warm icicles. Hope, f, ageless, mans the desk.)

 

(WILLY Loman, m, 65, sits down on a seat made out of clouds. He holds a ticket in his hand with the number 999K on it. He hangs his head in his hands, wiping off tears with his palms.)

 

(DEXTER Green, looks like a dashing young 50 year old, swings a golf club around, without a golf ball. He raises his hand to his eyes and peers out at the audience.)

 

DEXTER

(to Willy) Great weather we’re having up here, eh? The clouds are as white as snow.

 

(Willy looks up at Dexter and smiles through his tears.)

 

(In storms DAVE Moss, wearing a white suit and white fedora hat, while carrying a white briefcase.)

 

                        DAVE

(raising hands) I want to be reborn a rich man! STAT! Don’t give me any bullshit about it. I got short changed on the last deal, and you know it!

 

HOPE

Dave? Dave Moss?

 

                        DAVE

That was me. I’m thinking Velasco Javier, something. Something rich and foreign.

 

(Willy rises from his seat.)

 

WILLY

Now, wait a minute, Hope! I was here long before he was. I’ve been patiently waiting my turn. Why does he get to --

 

                        DAVE

(flustered, fast-paced) You know why I get to go first? Because I’m the machine. I AM THE –

 

(SHELLY Levine, m, late70s, walks by wearing a long white robe, and a red hat with a black feather, a super model angel on each shoulder.)

 

                        SHELLY

Now Moss, you know that I’m the Machine, and not you, which is why I get to go first.

 

                        HOPE

Let Shelly Levine through. He gets to go first.

 

(Willy shakes his number and sniffles.)

                        

WILLY

This is not fair! I’m well-liked! I should go first. I’ve been here long enough.

 

                        HOPE

Don’t fret Mr. Loman. Your new home should reflect the person you want to become, not the person that you were. You need a loving home that will allow you to balance past Karmic patterns.

 

                        DEXTER

(swinging golf club) Somewhere in the Alps, where I can go skiing and climb fourteeners.

 

(Shelly waves to Moss, snidely, and exits with the angels.)

                        

                        DAVE

That man’s a thief! I tell you!

 

                        WILLY

Aren’t we all?

 

(Dexter gathers next to Willy and Dave.)

 

                        DEXTER

Not all of us have to be thieves. Some of us actually work hard for a living. By the time I was twenty-seven, I was the richest man in my region, owning a large chain of Laundromats. I tell you, work hard and you can achieve greatness.

 

                        WILLY

(sniffling) I believe that! My brother walked into the jungle a boy, with no money to his name, and then walked out a rich man and owner of a diamond mine.

 

                        DAVE

(waving arms, to Dexter) Bullshit! No man becomes rich quick, without being a bit dishonest. You never stole a lick?

 

                        DEXTER

Not a dime!

 

                        DAVE

You lying scumbag!

 

                        HOPE

(smiling) Now Dave, if you don’t watch your tongue, you’ll be next.

 

                        (Dave pounds fists onto Hope’s desk.)

 

                        DAVE

(glowing) I want to be next! Dammit!

 

                        HOPE

(smiling) You just may be.

 

                        DAVE

Where’d Shelly go? Where’d that lying bastard get to live out his next life? I want to be somewhere warm, sunny, and tropical. And I want to be rich! Filthy rich!

 

                        HOPE

Shelly Levine has been reborn into a warm, sunny...desert land. He’ll become a vulture, in his next life. If you don’t watch your tongue, you’ll become a desert rat.

 

(The Super Model Angels return.)

 

DAVE

No Freakin’ Fair!

 

                        HOPE

Angels (pointing to Dave)...Take him away.

 

(The Super Model Angels grab Dave, and start to leave with him.)

 

                        DAVE

I said FREAKIN’! Freakin’… Not --

 

(The Super Model Angels silence Dave’s mouth with their hands and exit with him.)

 

                        HOPE

It pays to do the right thing.

 

                        WILLY

I’ll wait over here.

 

(Willy grabs a chair and places it near the front of the stage. He lets out a big sigh.)

 

                        DEXTER

Your next life might not be as bad as you might think. I was a penguin once. Had a lovely penguin mom, penguin wife, kids. It wasn’t half bad. I feel like I met my full potential then.

 

(Willy puts his right foot on the chair.)

 

                        HOPE

Feet off the chairs, Loman.

 

                        WILLY

(putting out hand) What’s your name, son?

 

                        DEXTER

(shaking hand) Dexter Green, at your service. At everyone’s service. I’ve served so many people. Even as a rich man. Who has ever served me?

 

                        WILLY

Wouldn’t you have people waiting on you, hand and foot?

 

                        DEXTER

Life is a strange thing, Mr. Loman. That’s your name, right?

 

                        WILLY

(saluting) That has a ring to it. But you can call me Willy.

 

                        DEXTER

Do you ever wish you could redo the same life, but a different way?

 

                        WILLY

(waving 999K number) Every day. Or, however long, I’ve been up here for. Even in my old life.

 

(Dexter swings the golf club and pears over audience.)

                        

                        DEXTER

I thought money would buy happiness.

 

                        WILLY

(resting foot on chair) Doesn’t it?

 

                        HOPE

(pointing with a feather pen) Feet, Mr. Loman.

 

(Willy takes his foot off the chair and kneels on it, instead.)

 

                        WILLY

(peering out at audience) Doesn’t it? Doesn’t money buy happiness?

 

 

                        DEXTER

Not at all. It’s lonely being rich. I wish I had love. If I could relive my life, I would reevaluate my priorities. I don’t know how, but being a penguin I was so much happier than being a rich entrepreneur. Life just made sense then. Did you ever have love?

 

WILLY

(standing up) I did. I loved Linda. I loved my boys. I loved my whole family. But what’s love without money?

 

                        DEXTER

Then you missed it. You missed the point. Just like me. It went flying over my head, like a golf ball. I still can’t find that golf ball. What’s a golf club without a golf ball?

 

                        WILLY

It’s nice to swing.

 

                        DEXTER

In my next life, I want to get it. I want to get the point. I will wait here, in Limbo, or Bardo, or wherever we are, until I figure out just where I’m supposed to be.

 

                        HOPE

Willy!

 

(Willy turns his head back and forth between Hope and Dexter.)

 

                        WILLY

Yeah, Hope?

 

                        HOPE

It’s time.

 

                        WILLY

(Staring at Dexter) Time for what?

 

                        HOPE

For your new life.

 

WILLY

But I’m not ready. I don’t know what I want, anymore.

 

                        HOPE

(putting arm around Willy) Don’t worry. We’re placing you with a loving family. They have two boys. You’ll be their third. Good morals. Steady income. A house in the country with a vegetable farm. You’ll grow up on a ranch, working with your hands.

 

                        WILLY

Now that’s the life.

 

(The angels gather Willy and take him off stage.)

(Hope takes a pink golf ball out of her gown and hands it to Dexter. He grasps it with dear life.)

 

                        DEXTER

Thanks, Hope. Hope. Hope is a good name.

 

                        HOPE

You’ll find what you’re looking for, when you least expect it.

 

(Hope heads back over to the reception desk. Dexter follows.)

 

DEXTER

Say, what are you doing when you get off, tonight?

 

                        HOPE

Tonight? Hmm. Well, I’m skiing in the morning. Care to join me? The slopes here are divine.

 

                        DEXTER

Sounds like heaven, to me.

 

                        HOPE

It really is. You know, if you play your cards right, you could be reborn into the God Realm.

 

                        (Dave Moss runs onto stage.)

 

                        DAVE

BULLSHIT!!! He gets to be reborn a God, and I’m reborn a desert rat?

 

                        HOPE

Fine. Angels. Send him to the Asura Realm.

 

                        DAVE

What’s that?

 

                        HOPE

Jealous Gods.

 

                        DAVE

Just as long as I’m a God...

 

                        (The angels take him away.)

 

                        HOPE

It’s been a long day. How about a walk?

 

                        DEXTER

Sounds divine. So who were you, in a past life?

 

                        HOPE

I was a penguin. Do you not recognize your wife?

 

                        DEXTER

(double take) Wow...It’s been a long time. But I never lost hope.

                        HOPE

You’re such a cornball, Dexter. But you’re mine. You will love the next life. I swear.

 

                        (They exit.)

 

(LIGHTS OUT.)                                           

(THE END.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All-American Woman

A Ten-Minute Play

All-American Woman alludes to the first-wave feminist, playwright and essayist, Judith Sargent Murray, and characters from the short stories The Birthmark by Nathanial Hawthorne, and The Paradise of Bachelors and The Tartarus of Maids by Herman Melville.

 

CAST OF CHARACTERS

SARG (Judith Sargent Murray)….An All-American writer, feminist and badass (47 going on 30)

AYLMER….An obsessive bar tender/failed scientist with Fabio-like hair and features (early 30s)

GEE GEE (Georgiana)……...A beautiful, ditzy, self-loathing woman with a birthmark (mid 20s)

MEL…………………………A well-dressed, chic bachelor, and the voice of Hellen (forever 29)

HELLEN.......…………….......A voiceless, pale, young woman, who lives and works in hell (21)

 

 

 

TIME:       The Present. Early evening.

PLACE: Swank, underground, All-American dive bar/hipsterscene. Anywhere, U.S.A.

SETTING: A hip, trendy, underground pub. Photos of the first moon landing, presidents from George Washington to current, of female and male soldiers, in uniform, and of baseball and American football players, with an American flag behind them all. Long, L-shaped, rich oak bar, surrounded by red, white and blue stools. Cozy, yet contemporary couches and coffee tables, to the side of the bar. A few small wooden tables with chairs in front of the bar.

 

 

 

 

(LIGHTS UP.)

 

(Present day.)

 

(Swank, underground, All-American dive bar/hipster scene.)

 

(“GEE GEE” Georgiana, f, mid 20s, beautiful, yet clueless, sits on a bar stool gazing at herself in a jeweled compact mirror. She pinches at the birthmark, in the shape of a hand, on her right cheek.)

 

(AYLMER, m, early 30s, fluffs his long flowing blonde hair and smiles a devilish grin. He fixes Gee Gee a drink from behind the bar.)

 

AYLMER

(to Gee Gee)Try this!

 

(Aylmer hands Gee Gee a fizzing drink with smoke coming out of the top. Gee Gee drinks it.)

 

                        GEE GEE

(wobbling on stool)I don’t know, Aylmer. I feel sort of dizzy.

 

AYLMER

It’s gonna be great! I’ll have you fixed up in no time! You’ll be the most beautiful woman in America! Just wait! Perfection. Simple. Beauty.

 

(SARG, f, 47 going on 30, gorgeous and in charge, rushes to the bar, bumping into Gee Gee. She pounds her sequined clutch onto the bar.)

 

                        SARG

(flustered)Tequila! Stat! ...Wait! Wait. What am I thinking? That’s so un-American. Long day! Saving the world, etcetera, etcetera... Give me a brewskee. From a local brewery. Always local.

 

                        AYLMER

Little busy, here.

 

                        SARG

This is a bar. You’re behind the bar. Is this not your job? Work hard. Or, are you un-American?

 

                        GEE GEE

It’s okay, Aylmer. I’m fine. I’m still a little woozy from the last drink.(to Sarg) Do I know you? Did we go to high school, together?

SARG

(fixing hair)I’m forty-seven.

                        

                        GEE GEE

Wow! That’s unbelievable! You look good! Doesn’t she look good, Aylmer?

 

                        AYLMER

Remarkable! Tell me, what potions do you use?

 

(Aylmer hands Sarg a dark beer from the tap. Sarg takes a sip.)

 

                        SARG

(loud and fast-paced)Potions? This isn’t magic. This takes work. I’m a hard working All-American woman. I go running, every morning, between five and six A.M. I spend my days writing magazine articles, poems, and plays. I’m the head of the P.T.A. I bake apple pie. I take my kids, Fitz and Julia, to baseball practice. I eat hamburgers and hotdogs with bacon. Vegan, of course. I’m animal rights and environmentally conscious. I’m also a badass superhero by night. But don’t tell anyone. That’s our little secret.

 

                        AYLMER

(reaching his hand out)But your skin is so soft and shiny.

 

                        SARG

(backing away)Neutrogena S.P.F. fifteen. Besides, forty-seven is the new thirty.

 

                        GEE GEE

That’s true Aylmer. I might as well be sixteen.

 

                        AYLMER

If only we could get rid of that hideous birthmark!

 

                        SARG

(smiling)I think it’s charming.

 

                        GEE GEE

(glowing)Thanks... What’s your name, stranger? Are those gauges in your ears?

 

                        SARG

(saluting)Judith Sargent Murray. My parents call me Judith, but you can call me Sarg. And yes these are nine millimeter gauges. What do they call you?

 

                        GEE GEE

Georgiana.

 

                        SARG

Hmm... How about Gee Gee, instead?

 

(MEL, m, forever 29, dressed to impress, storms into the bar holding a cigar, dragging HELLEN, a pale blonde woman, 21, by the hand.)

 

MEL

I’ve just been to hell and back!

 

                        AYLMER

Where?

 

                        MEL

Hell. You know, frozen pit of despair, sadness, danger, absence of all that is living? Hell.

 

(Aylmer pours Mel a drink and hands it to him.)

 

                        AYLMER

Awe... Devil’s Dungeon.

 

                        SARG

I did a tour there, back in my military days.

 

                        AYLMER

Wicked.

 

                        GEE GEE

Is that where you got your tattoos? So pretty.

 

                        MEL

(pointing to Sarg)Who’s this?

 

                        AYLMER

(overlapping)Don’t even think about it Gee Gee.

 

 

                        GEE GEE

What?

 

                        AYLMER

I’m having a hard enough time getting rid of that hideous birthmark, let alone any tattoos.

 

                        SARG

(saluting)I’m Sarg. Nice suit.

 

                        MEL

That’s a strange name for a girl. And it’s Armani. I do what I can. Every bachelor should.

 

                        SARG

(flexing her tattooed bicep)Woman. Not girl.

 

(Aylmer hands Gee Gee a neon green potion to drink.)

                        

                        MEL

(raising drink)Cheers. To women.

 

                        SARG

(raising beer)To All-American women! To Gee Gee.

 

                        GEE GEE

(raising potion)To Sarg.

 

                        AYLMER

(raising a purple test tube)To the beautiful pale skinned girl holding Mel’s hand!

 

                        SARG

(To Hellen)What’s your name, hon?

                        

                        (The pale skinned woman shrinks.)

 

MEL

She doesn’t speak.

 

 

                        GEE GEE

Where’d you find her?

 

                        MEL

Hell.

 

                        SARG

Yes, Hell. Good times. To Hellen!!

 

                        EVERYONE

To Hellen!!

 

(Everyone drinks, except for Hellen. Mel stands on top of a chair, dragging Hellen with him, like a doll.)

 

                        MEL

What does it mean to be an All-American woman?

 

                        SARG

Good question. What does it mean?

 

                        GEE GEE

(staring at self in mirror)To be beautiful!

 

                        AYLMER

To be perfect!

 

SARG

To be educated and scholarly! To be the best at our chosen field!

 

                        MEL

(raising Hellen’s hand)To be hard working, to the point of having no life of your own!

 

                        GEE GEE

To have nice shoes!

 

                        (Mel and Sarg tilt their heads.)

 

                        GEE GEE

And be able to walk in them, too. It takes talent.

 

                        AYLMER

Just look at her shoes!

 

(Gee Gee stands up from her stool, sporting off her 5 inch high stilettos. She quickly falls back to her seat.)

 

GEE GEE

I’m dizzy.

 

                        AYLMER

That only means it’s working.

 

                        SARG

To shoes! To the red, white, and blue! To the women working two jobs and raising a family!

 

                        MEL

To twelve hour days, with no breaks, no food, no contact with the opposite sex, just working till your pale and blue! To monotony! To desperation! To being slaves to the Sultan! To dying a lonely virginal death with a horribly broken heart and sad spirit!

 

                        GEE GEE

To tattoos!

 

                        AYLMER

No, Gee Gee...To doing what you’re told! To living up to a man’s expectations of perfection and gold!

 

                        GEE GEE

To clear beautiful skin! To obeying your husband. After all, he does know what’s best. It is our duty, as women.

 

                        MEL

As American women!

 

                        AYLMER

Hellen really has beautiful skin. Does she exfoliate?

 

                        MEL

I don’t know. She doesn’t talk.

 

                        AYLMER

To keeping your mouth shut!

 

                        GEE GEE

And doing what you’re told.

 

                        SARG

We’re getting a little off track here. Women, All-American women, are so much more than a pretty face. We are fighters! We are warriors, spiritually, mentally, emotionally, and physically. We work hard! We are educated! We are driven, sophisticated, craftspeople of art and fine literature. We write plays. American plays. We can bring home the bacon, too! Vegan bacon, of course.

 

                        GEE GEE

We are pretty, though, right?

 

AYLMER

If only we could get that hideous birthmark off your face!

 

                        MEL

I think it’s rather charming.

 

                        SARG

That’s what I said. But yes, you are pretty. But you can be both pretty and smart.

 

                        GEE GEE

Really?

 

                        AYLMER

No, Georgiana. Let’s focus on one thing at a time.

 

                        MEL

To multitasking!

 

                        GEE GEE

To multitasking!

 

                        AYLMER

One thing at a time, dear.

 

                        SARG

To the brave, the proud, and the free!! To All-American women! To you and you and me!!!

 

(Everyone drinks, except Hellen. Gee Gee looks in the mirror and smiles.)

 

                        GEE GEE

My birthmark! It’s gone! You did it Aylmer!

 

                        (The birthmark disappears.)

 

                        AYLMER

I did it! I did it! Of course, I did it! I told you I would. To Perfection!

 

(Aylmer hops over the bar and kisses Gee Gee. Gee Gee smiles, grows faint, and falls to the ground.)

 

(Mel drops to his knees, pulling Hellen with him. Mel checks Gee Gee’s pulse. Hellen drops her wallet.)

 

MEL

She’s dead. You killed her...

 

                        SARG

Back away! I know CPR!

 

(Sarg drops to her knees and begins to perform CPR.)

 

SARG

(rising to feet)It’s too late.

 

                        AYLMER

Too late?

 

                        SARG

You killed her.

 

AYLMER

My dying pale flower. Aye me...So, Hellen, what are you up to these days?

 

(Hellen struggles to get free from Mel’s grip. She pulls Mel up to his feet. Sarg and Aylmer rise to their feet, as well.)

                  

            MEL

She doesn’t speak...And she’s with me.

 

                        SARG

Well, this was all fun and entertaining. But I have to go fight crime. Save the world. Etcetera, etcetera. Have to be up at four, running at five. I need to work on a play I’m writing. You all were wonderful characters to work with, but I must be on my way.

 

                        MEL

Hellen and I have somewhere to be. I’m taking her to my own Paradise of Bachelors. Introduce her to the guys. You can’t be a free man your entire life.

 

                        SARG

(making a gun from her fingers, and pointing it at Mel)Unless you’re American!

 

                        MEL

True story.

 

                        AYLMER

Well, those are the breaks. I’ll just be cleaning up over here.

 

(Aylmer drags Gee Gee’s body behind the bar.)

 

                        MEL

Nice meeting you, Sarg.

 

(Mel goes to shake Sarg’s hand, but Sarg fixes her hair, instead.)

                                    

                        MEL (CONT’D)

Put it on my tab. Put Sarg’s drink on my tab, too.

 

                        SARG

Why thank you, kind sir.

 

                        (Mel yanks Hellen out the door.)

 

                        SARG

Sorry, about the whole dead wife thing. She really was lovely.

 

                        AYLMER

(shrugging)You win some, you lose some.

 

                        (Sarg salutes Aylmer and exits.)

                        

                        AYLMER

(to self)On the bright side, my potion did work.

 

(Aylmer wipes down the bar with a wetrag.)

 

(Hellen runs into the bar and picks up a wallet off the floor.)

 

                        HELLEN

I dropped this.

 

                        AYLMER

You speak.

 

                        HELLEN

My silence is my voice.

 

(Hellen smiles and runs out the door.Aylmer jumps over the bar and peers outside.)

 

AYLMER

She had such nice skin...Last Call, Everyone! I have to take my wife to the morgue.

 

(Sounds of a crowd peak then go silent. Aylmer drags Gee Gee off stage.)

 

(LIGHTS DOWN)

 

(THE END.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Existential Dilemma

Existential Dilemma alludes to characters from the films The Truman Show, The Matrix, Inception, Existenz, andVanilla Sky, as well as famous scientist Albert Einstein and playwright William Shakespeare.

 

Cast of Characters

Truman...M, late 30s, scared, frantic, paranoid and confused

Cobb...M, mid 30s, confident, intelligent, a voice of reason

Tom Cruise... M, late 30s, cocky, confident, and assured

Allegra...F, 35, gorgeous, smart, tough and in charge

Neo...M, 35, a driven action hero, dressed in all black

Einstein...The wise man, 70, suit and tie, unruly grey hair

Shakespeare...Renaissance Man, 45, a superior playwright

God...F, 30, white power suit, the writer of the play

Jesus...M, 33, long hair, wearing a white robe – Brief Cameo

 

TIME: Present

PLACE: Truman’s Brain and Skull

SETTING: A Giant smoke-filled Brain and Skull. Props needed are smoke, sounds of an explosion, and Einstein and Shakespeare need to either rise from the stage or fall from the sky on wires. Their entrance should be explosive. To what extent is up to the director and setting designer. At the end of the play, a bed is necessary for Truman to wake up in.

 

 

(LIGHTS UP to reveal the inside of Truman’s giant brain and skull set)

(Truman, Cobb, Neo, Allegra, and Tom Cruise wander around questioning each other and the environment with their facial and body gestures.)

TRUMAN

What am I doing here? Where am I?

 

                        ALLEGRA

You’re in a computer simulation. A virtual reality video game. We all are.

 

                        TRUMAN

Excuse me?

 

                        NEO

The Matrix. We’re all strapped to tubes, living in human cocoons. We’re batteries that machines feed off of.

 

                        TRUMAN

OKAAAY... I’ll just be getting out of here!!

 

(Truman rushes toward each side of the stage. He is trapped. No way out.)

 

COBB

Don’t panic. We’re dreaming. Nothing more. Nothing less.

 

                        NEO

I beg to differ. We’re trapped inside the Matrix, and I can set us free.

 

                        ALLEGRA

Matrix? This is Existenz. I designed it myself. And there’s no real way of ever knowing if or when you are out. It’s an elaborate and very organic game design.

 

                        TRUMAN

I am so over games.

 

                        COBB

This isn’t a game. This is a dream. And you can wake up any time. You just have to kill yourself.

 

                        TRUMAN

(running around) Help! Get me out of here!!! Please, somebody! I give up! You got me. Let me go now.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

Are you guys done fucking with this poor man’s brain? Or, shall I say my brain?

 

                        TRUMAN

Your brain? What am I doing inside of your brain?

 

                        TOM CRUISE

I’m Tom Cruise. Everyone is inside of my brain. The world revolves around me.

 

                        TRUMAN

I thought the world revolved around me. At least it did, until I escaped. What a nightmare!

 

                        COBB

What’s your name?

 

                        TRUMAN

I’m Truman.

 

                        COBB

(shaking hands) I’m Cobb.

 

                        NEO

I’m Neo. And we don’t have much time before the Smiths get here.

 

                        TRUMAN

The Smiths?

                        NEO

Computer software designed to kill on sight.

 

                        TRUMAN

(fainting) Oh, God.

 

                        ALLEGRA

(catching) Toughen up soldier. It’s me they’re after. Nobody can handle the realness of Existenz. They think I’m the devil.

 

                        NEO

They’ll kill us all.

 

                        COBB

Nobody’s killing anyone. Not for real. When you die, you wake up.

 

                        NEO

No. If you die inside the Matrix, you die in real life.

 

                        ALLEGRA

There’s no Matrix.

 

                        NEO

There’s no Existenz. This isn’t just some game. This is warfare.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

You guys are killing me here. Tom Cruise here. Remember me? Yeah, I’m Tom Cruise. Get it through your head. Nothing can happen to nobody without getting through me. I make the rules around here. This is my dream. You all are just dream characters.

 

                        COBB

Tom?

 

                        TOM CRUISE

Yes?

 

                        COBB

This is everyone’s dream. This is a shared dream. We’re experiencing this together.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

Pretty sure the world revolves around me. Plus, my body is frozen and in a state of sleep suspension. So, I’m certain this is my dream.

 

                        TRUMAN

(running around) Let me out! Let me out!!

 

                        NEO

I’ll get us out of here. I’m the Chosen One. We just need a phone. Anyone got a phone?

 

                        (Everyone searches.)

 

                        ALLEGRA

Fresh out.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

I’m dry.

 

                        COBB

We don’t need a phone. We just need to wake up.

 

                        NEO

Your idea of waking up is my idea of death. I veto this plan.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

All we have to do is jump off the ledge. And BAMMO! We wake up! Or, shall I say, I wake up.

 

                        COBB

Don’t be so full of yourself.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

Full of myself? This is my dream!

 

                        COBB

This is a shared dream!

 

                        TOM CRUISE

I’m Tom Cruise.

 

                        COBB

We get that! The world revolves around you. But whether you believe this, or not, we’re all dreaming. Not just you.

 

                        NEO

This isn’t a God Damn Dream! You guys are gonna get us killed, with all your crazy talk of jumping off the ledge and killing yourselves.

 

                        ALLEGRA

Boys. Boys. Calm down. Allegra has it all figured out.

 

                        TRUMAN

Allegra?

 

                        ALLEGRA

That’s me. I designed this brain. I’ll get us out.

 

                        TRUMAN

I think I’m gonna puke. (fainting)

 

                        COBB

(catching) You’ll be fine. We’ll all wake up in due time.

 

                        NEO

Due time? There’s no time. They’ll be here any minute. Déjà vu. Do you hear that?

 

                        ALLEGRA

Hear what?

 

(Albert Einstein and William Shakespeare rise from the stage or fall from the sky in a big explosion. Whatever works best.)

 

EINSTEIN

Calm down. You’re all right. In a way.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

Life is a play. And we all play a part. We each have our own role. None is greater than the other. Everyone’s a star.

 

                        TRUMAN

A play? I’m in a play?

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

We all are.

 

                        NEO

This isn’t a play. It’s the Matrix.

 

                        ALLEGRA

Existenz.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

A dream.

 

                        COBB

A shared dream.

 

                        TRUMAN

Get me out of here!!! (rushing each side of the stage)

 

                        EINSTEIN

Truman?

 

                        TRUMAN

How’d you know my name?

 

                        EINSTEIN

Because I am you. We all are. A human being is part of the whole, called by us Universe. He experiences himself as something separate from the rest. This is an optical delusion of consciousness. It’s a prison, really.

 

                        TRUMAN

How do I get out?

 

                        EINSTEIN

You can never stop existing. Consciousness is the only thing that truly exists, and it can never be destroyed.

 

                        TRUMAN

I’m stuck in here?

 

                        EINSTEIN

In here? No. This is just a dream. We’re stuck inside your brain. Or, a projection of your brain.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

I told you it was a dream.

 

                        EINSTEIN

It’s Truman’s dream.

 

                        EVERYONE

What?

 

                        EINSTEIN

Let me explain. Life is both a dream and a spiritual matrix.

 

                        NEO

Thank you!

 

                        EINSTEIN

But there are no machines out to get us.

 

                        NEO

I beg to differ.

 

                        EINSTEIN

And life isn’t a virtual reality video game.

 

                        ALLEGRA

Actually –-

 

                        EINSTEIN

Although there are new scientists who have found computer code written in the equations used to describe the cosmos.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

We’re really just actors in a play. Somebody greater than us is writing a script.

 

                        COBB

Nobody’s greater than Shakespeare.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

I agree. She doesn’t have my character down at all. This is not how I talk. I most certainly do not speak like this. I doubt she’s even read one of my plays.

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (offstage)

Have so. I just skimmed past all the flowery language.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

It’s all flowery language! It’s poetry and verse.

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (offstage)

They have modern translations, now.

 

                        ALLEGRA

Is she serious?

 

                        COBB

Yeah? Who reads modern translations of Shakespeare?

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (offstage)

Okay. Okay. Sorry. Back to Einstein.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

Thou art lovelier than a rose. This is the line you give me?

 

                        ALLEGRA

Somebody didn’t do their homework...

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (offstage)

Einstein. Focus on Einstein.

 

                        EINSTEIN

What I was saying is that life is a play.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

Yes.

 

                        EINSTEIN

And life is a spiritual matrix.

 

                        NEO

Yes.

 

                        EINSTEIN

But the Universe is bigger than a computer simulation or video game. In actuality, there are no computers. Everything we see, taste, touch, smell, feel, hear, and sense are all just projections of consciousness. Nothing is real. It’s all in our heads. Right now, we’re in Truman’s head. But in the big picture, heads do not exist. Our heads -- our brains are just figments of our imagination, as well. The world is illusory and it does not revolve around just Truman.

 

                        TRUMAN

Ahh! Thank God!

 

                        EINSTEIN

The world does not revolve around Tom Cruise.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

Are you sure?

 

                        EINSTEIN

It did in Vanilla Sky. Which is a great movie by the way!

 

                        TOM CRUISE

Thanks!

 

                        EINSTEIN

Highly underrated.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

I agree.

 

                              NEO

So the Matrix doesn’t exist?

 

                              EINSTEIN

It does. Just not in the same way that an action film would portray it. It’s a spiritual matrix. A dream.

 

                              NEO

What’s really outside of the Matrix?

 

                              EINSTEIN

Heaven. Bardo. Or, perhaps another dream.

 

                              COBB

Don’t you know? Aren’t you dead?

 

                              EINSTEIN

You can never truly die. Consciousness is all that exists. And it can never be destroyed. What the playwright –-

 

                              SHAKESPEARE

Which is not me.

                        

                              COBB

And will never come close to being you.

 

                              EINSTEIN

What she’s trying to express is that we are all one consciousness      seeing itself in an infinite amount of ways. What is beyond the dream is anyone’s guess. But life is so much bigger than a computer game and simulation. Not to say it’s not feasible. When it comes to God – the real God – not the playwright – and not the actress playing the Voice of God – God is beyond being a computer programmer. God is outside of space and time. Outside of the Universe. Beyond the dream.

 

                              COBB

And the Universe?

 

                        EINSTEIN

One big stream of consciousness, seeing itself in infinite ways. It is all that is. Each of us exists. To some extent. We just have to realize that we are all one.

 

                        COBB

One big shared dream.

 

                        TOM CRUISE

Fine. You win. I’m not really Tom Cruise. The real Tom Cruise would most definitely win. He’s the greatest actor of all time.

 

                        ALLEGRA

I think I’m the only one who got left out. I still say I created all of this.

 

                        EINSTEIN

In many ways you have. Our thoughts create the world around us.

 

                        (Jesus sneaks onto stage for a cameo.)

 

                        JESUS

It is done unto you as you believe.

 

                        COBB

Wrong play, Jesus!

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

You’re up next.

 

                        JESUS

Sorry! My condolences! Love is patient. Love is kind.

 

                        (Jesus exits with a bow and a smile.)

 

                        EINSTEIN

Jesus has a point. It is done unto you as you believe, and as you observe. Outcomes are based off of our observations. Perhaps, there is an alternate universe for each choice we make. But I think that’s just Spooky!

 

                        TRUMAN

Can I wake up, yet? Please!

 

                        EINSTEIN

You can wake up from this dream. But it’s not your time to wake up from the dream of life.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

But it is time to end the play. We’ve gone over by a minute.

 

                        NEO

I’m still not entirely convinced the Smiths aren’t out to get us.

 

                        TRUMAN

Wake me up!! Please!!

 

                        EINSTEIN

Just tap your heels together and say, “There’s No Place Like Home.”

 

                        TRUMAN

(tapping heels) There’s no place like home.

 

                        EINSTEIN

Everyone!

 

                        EVERYONE

(tapping heels) There’s no place like home. There’s no place like home. There’s no place like home.

 

                        (A big explosion. Lights down.)

 

(Lights up to reveal Truman lying on a bed in the middle of an empty stage.)

 

TRUMAN

Oh, God! Whew! Daymares. Nightmares. Computer simulations. Video games. Oh, my! I’m just glad I survived. What is life, but a world within a world, a dream within a dream? A play or a movie, or a video game? I just don’t want it to revolve around me.

 

                        EINSTEIN (offstage)

We are you, Truman. All of us.

 

                        TRUMAN

What an existential dilemma! Glad I’m not the playwright. This play is two minutes over being a ten minute play. Who writes twelve minute plays?

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (offstage)

Sorry! I got carried away.

 

                        TRUMAN

Well, you really messed with my head. And you made me look like a fool. I didn’t have any good lines, until now. And these lines are fairly weak and forced. I mean, Existential Dilemma? Who says that?

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (off stage)

I say that!

 

                        TRUMAN

It’s existential crisis!

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (offstage)

We’re onto the thirteenth page. Can we call it a night? I’m sure the audience has other ten minute plays to watch.

 

                        TRUMAN

I don’t know if the audience can sit through another one of your plays.

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (off stage)

I’m not that bad! Besides, I’m just the actress playing the Voice of God.

 

                        TRUMAN

The playwright calls herself God?

 

                        VOICE OF GOD (off stage)

Logistics. Now can we call all the actors back on stage for a bow?

 

                        TRUMAN

I suppose. Just quit messing with my head. And quit making me run around.

 

                        (God walks on stage.)

 

                        GOD

Deal! Okay everyone. Let’s take a bow.

 

                        (Everyone rushes on stage.)

 

                        TOM CRUISE

That was painful.

 

                        COBB

Narcissistic? The playwright, I mean.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

Too catchy.

 

                        GOD

It’s meta.

 

                        COBB

Meta-fiction?

 

                        GOD

Let’s just call it a night. What’s the moral, Einstein?

 

                        EINSTEIN

We are all one collective consciousness known as the Universe. Yet we experience ourselves as separate from each other. Life is a persistent illusion, a hologram, a dream, a spiritual matrix. What’s outside the dream and matrix is anyone’s guess. But I surmise it is bigger, more elaborate, and more profound than a virtual reality video game, despite evidence of computer code being written in the fabric of the cosmos.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

And now the play is done. Thank God! These contemporary plays go too far, sometimes.

 

                        COBB

They’re not like the classics.

 

                        ALLEGRA

I’m bored. Let’s just bow.

 

                        GOD

Everyone bow.

 

                        (Everyone bows.)

 

                        TRUMAN

The plays over! You can all go home! Oh, wait – there’s another play. Just sit down. Or stand up? Standing ovations are nice. Or, not? Whatever you prefer.

 

                        SHAKESPEARE

Thirteen and a half minute play!

 

                        GOD

Thee end!

                        (Lights Down)

 

                        (The End.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ascended Masters and Goddesses

A Fifteen-Minute Play

Ascended Masters and Goddesses alludes to teachings of various spiritual and philosophical leaders, texts, and concepts. It is also inspired by many of Doreen Virtue’s oracle cards. However, it does not stay true to the exact meanings of her cards.

 

Cast of Characters

Salma......Mid-20s, f, broke, spiritually confused, grad student

Diogenes.........Mid-50s, grumpy man in a toga, carrying a lamp

Jesus...33, benevolent man, in a white gown and blue sash, not the typical Christ figure

Isis...40s, Egyptian Goddess with wings, preaches love and balance

Kali...40s, dark, sexy and sassy, f, in a black leotard and red cape, with skull necklace

Siddhartha Gautama Buddha... 30s, enlightened man, preaching oneness and meditation

Lao Tzu...60s, m, wearing a dark robe, guiding Salma to be like water, through effortless action

Star...A young woman dressed as an 8 pointed star – Fairy Godmother type

Mail Carrier: young, male postal carrier

Time: Present

Place: A studio apartment

Setting: A yoga mat and a futon.

 

 

 

                              (LIGHTS UP)

      

                              (Present)

 

(SALMA, f, 26, sits cross legged on the floor of her studio apartment, on top of a yoga mat or piece of carpet. Her eyes are closed and hands in a meditative gesture, performing some Madra.)

 

SALMA

(frustrated) OM... Ommmm.... Om... White clouds. Doves. Stupid boys. Broke. Broken beyond repair. No job. Gonna get evicted. I mean, OM. Ommmm.... Oh, God. What’s the point? I have no money. My book’s not finished. No refund check from grad school, yet. What was the point of studying Writing, Religious Studies and Philosophy? Every Philosophy student I know ends up working at a pizza shop. I can’t even get a job at McDonalds. I failed the math test. After taking three years of Algebra, I fail the McDonald’s math test! (pounding fists onto floor) Seriously, what is the point?! I might as well drop out and join a commune. God, help me!

 

                              (A KNOCK on the door.)

 

                              SALMA (CONT’D)

What now?

 

(Salma gets off of the floor and heads over to the front door.)

 

SALMA (CONT’D)

(before opening the door)I’m sorry but I don’t have the rent, ye—

 

(At the door: DIOGENES, m, 55, wearing a dirty white sheet around his waist, carries an ancient lamp with a candle in it.)

 

SALMA (CONT’D)

Who...are...you? Are you okay?

 

                              DIOGENES

I’m searching for the honest man.

 

                              SALMA

Okay? Well, there aren’t too many of those around here, these days. But if you’re looking for the apartment manager, he’s in the brick building across the street.

 

                              DIOGENES

Salma?

 

                              SALMA

Maybe. And you are?

 

                              DIOGENES

I am Diogenes, the great Ascended Master. I have come to light your way.

 

                              SALMA

I should be closing the door, now. (closing door)

 

                              DIOGENES

(holding door open) Wait. Heaven has sent me to guide you.

 

                              SALMA

Is this some prank?

 

                              DIOGENES

Not today.

 

                              SALMA

Okay. Well, Diogenes was a philosopher. Not an Ascended Master. I guess you could be both, but –

 

(In walks Jesus, m, 33, wearing a white robe with blue sash.)

 

JESUS

What Diogenes means to say is you need some tough love. You have called for our help and here we are.

 

SALMA

Jesus? Am I hallucinating? My body is warm and tingling. My head is hot. I feel faint. What’s going on here?

 

                              JESUS

Salma, give me your hand.

 

(Jesus takes Salma’s hand. He enters her apartment, along with Diogenes.)

 

JESUS

It is done unto you as you believe.

 

                              SALMA

I don’t believe this is happening.

 

                              JESUS

You have too many mixed beliefs. You believe in everything and everyone but yourself, when you need to believe in yourself the most.

 

                              SALMA

But I –-

 

                              JESUS

Calm yourself. Close your eyes. Take a deep breath. Surrender and Release.

 

(Salma takes a deep breath and sighs. Jesus lets go of her hand.)

 

SALMA

Jesus, I don’t know what I’m going to do. I don’t have rent money, and it’s a week past due. I don’t have a job. My refund check from school is late. And they start evictions on Friday. It’s a two hundred and forty-five dollar court fee. Plus the seventy-five dollar late fee. I have no family in town. All my friends live with their parents. I just --

 

DIOGENES

He has the most who is content with the least.

 

                              SALMA

Easy for you to say. And that’s a bit sexist, by the way. Human beings are not all male.

 

                              DIOGENES

Those who have virtue always in their mouths, and neglect it in practice, are like a harp, which its sound is pleasing to others, while itself is insensible to the music.

 

                              SALMA

What does that even mean?

 

                              (Sounds of THUNDER Clapping)

 

(In walks KALI, f, 45, wearing a long, dark, red robe, a tight, black, full body leotard, and a skull necklace.)

 

                              KALI

It means shut up and listen, girlfriend.

 

(ISIS, f, 45, enters from a CLOUD of SMOKE, with long wings on her arms.)

 

ISIS

It means you talk the talk, but are you walking the walk?

 

                              SALMA

Isis. And who are you?

 

                              KALI

Kali, goddess of creation and destruction. An entity to be feared.

 

                              SALMA

No doubt. I feel you in my bones.

 

                              JESUS

Salma, why haven’t you gotten a job?

 

                              SALMA

Because nobody will hire me.

 

                              DIOGENES

Are you being honest?

 

                              SALMA

Yes! I’ve applied to so many jobs that I can’t even remember all the companies’ names.

 

                              ISIS

But is this what you really want? Do you want to work at the jobs you’ve applied for?

 

                              SALMA

Not really, but I need the money.

 

                              ISIS

I can help you balance a career, school, relationships and your home. But if you don’t want to work at these jobs, you’re not going to get them.

 

                              SALMA

But I –-

 

                              JESUS

It is done unto you as you believe.

 

(STAR, f, 30, dressed in a giant eight pointed golden star enters.)

 

STAR

And as you wish.

 

                              SALMA

You are?

 

                              STAR

Star. I am the embodiment of all the stars you have wished upon, and all of the repeating ones you wish upon. Eleven-eleven. One-eleven. All the wishes you write down in your goals and dreams book. All the prayers you make, while awake and dreaming. I am your dreams coming to fruition.

 

                              SALMA

Like a fairy godmother? Or, an angel?

 

                              ISIS

What do you wish for?

 

                              KALI

What do you really wish for?

 

                              DIOGENES

Be honest.

 

                              SALMA

I wish that I could go to grad school full-time, and work on my book. I wish my refund check would come in by Friday, and that I wouldn’t get evicted. I wish that I wouldn’t have to work another dead end job, and that I could make it as a writer. And I wish boys would stop pushing me around, like I’m some doormat, or a used Kleenex. And I really wish I could meditate in peace, without worrying how I am going to take care of myself.

 

                              KALI

With me by your side, men will beg you to be with them.

 

                              ISIS

You can always call on me to help you with your career and school. I know more about unconditional love than Kali.

 

                              KALI

But lust fuels the cycle of death and rebirth. It both creates and destroys.

 

(In walks SIDDHARTHA GAUTAMA BUDDHA, 45, wearing a large, off the shoulder, orange gown.)

 

BUDDHA

I can help with your meditation.

 

                              SALMA

Siddhartha Gautama Buddha!

 

                              BUDDHA

Call me Buddha. Call yourself Buddha, too.

 

                              SALMA

I don’t know about that.

 

                              JESUS

Is it not written that you are all Gods?

 

                              SALMA

In Psalms eighty-two six. And you say it in John ten thirty-four.

                              JESUS

Your religious studies classes have paid off.

 

                              SALMA

But I’m not enlightened, yet. Far from it.

 

                              DIOGENES

My lamp will guide the way.

 

                              JESUS

And you can always pray.

 

                              STAR

And make a wish.

 

                              BUDDHA

And meditate to hear God’s answers.

 

                              JESUS

Which doesn’t have to be the God of the bible. When I say I am the way, the truth, and the light, and that nobody can come to the Father, except through me, I am really saying, you must have Christ-consciousness. You must take what you have studied for so long and apply it to your life. You are a God.

 

                              ISIS

Just like all of us.

 

                              KALI

Even like me.

 

                              SALMA

Really, Kali?

 

                              KALI

Take back your power, girl! Stop acting like a victim! Nobody is going to live your life for you. Nobody is going to give you money for sitting on your ass and complaining all day. And as far as boys go, you’re a pushover.

 

(In walks LAO TZU, m, 65, effortlessly, and in a long robe.)

 

SALMA

Lao Tzu?

 

                              LAO TZU

Stop forcing things to happen.

 

                              ISIS                                          

Stop demanding things to go your way.

 

                              LAO TZU

They’ll come effortlessly with non-action.

 

                              KALI

Stop trying to force guys to stay. Command power! Not demand it. Stop acting like a whiny little two-year old throwing a temper tantrum.

 

                              STAR

Know that you already deserve everything you ever wished for.

 

                              JESUS

And believe that it is yours.

 

                              (Salma walks over to Lao Tzu.)

 

                              SALMA

There is so much to take in. I don’t know what to say, or what to do, or where to start.

 

                              DIOGENES

God gave human beings two ears and one mouth, so they could listen more and speak less.

 

                              SALMA

But how do you learn, without asking questions?

 

                              BUDDHA

You must silence your mind, and let the answers come to you.

 

                              LAO TZU

Life is a series of spontaneous changes. If you resist them, there will only be sorrow. You must move like water, effortlessly, and with non-action.

 

                              SALMA

But you can’t just sit in one place and do nothing.

 

                              LAO TZU

That is not the meaning of non-action.

 

                              SALMA

Then what is?

 

                              ISIS

Stop forcing things to happen. Allow them to happen.

 

                              SALMA

But I don’t want to allow myself to get evicted.

 

                              KALI

You’re missing the point.

 

                              SALMA

So, what is the point?

 

                              JESUS

We are what we believe. Our inner reality creates our outer reality. We should do unto others as we would like done unto ourselves. But we should also do unto ourselves as we would like others to do unto us. All of your problems stem from within.

 

                              LAO TZU

We can give a person a fish and they will eat for a day. But if we teach them how to fish, they will eat for a lifetime.

 

                              SALMA

What if I don’t eat fish?

 

                              LAO TZU

Simplify your mind right now.

 

                              BUDDHA

Sit down and calm yourself.

 

(Salma sits cross legged on the ground.)

 

BUDDHA

Close your eyes. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Let nothing but my words penetrate your mind.

 

(Salma closes her eyes and breathes. The rest of the Ascended Masters back away. Some sit on Salma’s futon. Some stand over her in prayer.)

 

BUDDHA (CONT’D)

Imagine that you are on an island, and you need to cross to the island across the river. You cannot swim it, because it is much too turbulent and broad. But you are the only one on the island and there are no boats in sight. All you can do is build yourself a raft. You have all the tools you need to build this raft, and you are skilled enough to build it, just being who you are, with the knowledge you have. You build the raft, and see that it is sturdy. You put the raft in the water, and paddle across the river using your hands, and your intuitive knowledge. Now, hours pass, maybe a day, and you make it across to the other island. Do you think it would be wise to carry the raft with you, now that you are on the island? You can answer.

 

                              SALMA

(keeping eyes closed) No, Buddha.

 

                              BUDDHA

Should you leave it on the shore?

 

                              SALMA

I don’t want anyone to take it. What if I need it, again?

 

                              BUDDHA

You will always have the knowledge to build another raft. But a raft is too heavy to carry on your back. You must let go of the raft.

 

                              LAO TZU

Let go of the raft.

 

                              SALMA

But what have I learned?

 

                              BUDDHA

The answers are within.

 

                              KALI

You create your own reality.

 

(Everyone exists on their last line.)

 

                              JESUS

It is done unto you as you believe. Just pray.

 

                              STAR

And wish.

 

                              BUDDHA

And meditate.

 

                              KALI

And know that you have all the powers of a God within you. But you can always invoke our help. Just imagine owning your power, not demanding it from others.

 

                              ISIS

We believe in you. Believe in yourself.

 

                              LAO TZU

Flow like water.

 

                              DIOGENES

The lamp will guide the way.

 

(Diogenes leaves the lamp at the door. Salma opens her eyes. Everyone is gone. All that is left is Diogenes lamp. She gets up and walks over to the door. A MAIL CARRIER knocks on the door.)

 

SALMA

(picking up lamp) Hi.

 

                              MAIL CARRIER

Hi Salma. Your mailbox was full. So, I thought I would bring you your mail.

 

                              SALMA

Thank you! (setting down lamp, looking through mail) Oh, I got a letter from school. (opening it) It’s my check! Deus Ex Machina.

 

                              MAIL CARRIER

Excuse me?

 

                              SALMA

It means God in the Machine. It’s a term used in plays where something awful is about to happen, but God steps in and solves all of the problems. In this case, my Ascended Masters and Goddesses did.

 

                              MAIL CARRIER

Okay. Well, I hope all of your problems have been solved.

 

                              SALMA

They haven’t. Just rent. But hey, do you want to get a cup of coffee, sometime? (holding up check) I’ll treat.

 

                              MAIL CARRIER

I’m married. But thank you.

 

                              SALMA

No, thank you –- for the mail.

 

                              MAIL CARRIER

(leaving) Have a nice day.

 

                              SALMA

You too. (closing door) Command. Not demand. Don’t force. Allow. Be like water. Meditate. And know that you are a God. Wish. Pray. Believe in yourself. And be honest with yourself. I don’t want a job. I want to be a writer. So, I better finish writing and editing my book. (sitting down, closing eyes) But first, I need to silence my mind. Om... OM. Kali, I could use your help. I could use all of your help.

 

                              (Everyone returns.)

 

                              JESUS

Remember who you are.

 

                              KALI

Take back your power.

 

                              BUDDHA

You are one with all of us. You are a Buddha.

 

                              LAO TZU

We can teach you how to fish. Not for fish. But for life’s necessities.

 

                              ISIS

Love is a necessity.

 

                              JESUS

Remember that love is the only thing that exists.

 

                              DIOGENES

That is the only truth you need to know.

 

                              BUDDHA

And you are love.

 

                              LAO TZU

Love is like water, flowing gently around even the greatest mountains. Love, like water, falls below the people, and that is how it can rule the people.

 

                              KALI

This is what it means to command, not demand.

 

                              ISIS

Be like love.

 

                              JESUS

And know that you already are like love.

 

                              STAR

Because love is all there is. And love is what makes your wishes come true.

 

                              SALMA

But I have nobody to love.

 

                              ISIS

Love yourself.

 

                              BUDDHA

Know that we are all one.

 

                              ISIS

When you love yourself, you bring love to you.

 

                              JESUS

And when you learn to love yourself, remember to love your neighbor, too.

 

                              BUDDHA

Because your neighbor is you.

 

                              JESUS

I and the father are one, but the father is greater than me. And you and I are also one.

 

                              STAR

We all are.

 

                              KALI

You’re even one with me.

 

                              ISIS

And me.

 

                              DIOGENES

And I suppose even me, although I don’t like to let on.

 

                              LAO TZU

Be like water. Be like love.

 

                              BUDDHA

Be one with the universe. And just breathe.

 

                              JESUS

When you pray, you talk to all of the powers that be.

 

                              BUDDHA

But meditating is listening.

 

                              ISIS

And when you listen, you realize that all is love and all are one.

 

                              KALI

All of us.

 

                              STAR

And love makes your dreams come true.

 

                              JESUS

Just remember that love starts with you.

 

                              DIOGENES

Aint that the truth.

 

                              SALMA

Thank you. I’ll try to listen more and speak less. Which is what my dear Ascended Maser, Diogenes, has been trying to say all along.

 

                              DIOGENES

Perhaps, there is an Honest Man in you. Or, shall I say Honest Woman, or Honest Human Being.

 

                              SALMA

Thank you, Diogenes. Thank you all!

 

                              KALI

Look at that man outside. Isn’t he cute?

 

                              (Everyone looks.)

 

                              SALMA

I know him! He goes to school with me. He is way cute!

 

                              KALI

Let’s make him beg for you.

 

                              ISIS

Or, maybe fall in love.

 

                              SALMA

One step at a time. I just want to get some coffee.

 

                              KALI

You’ll know what to do.

 

                              JESUS

Because we are you, and you are us.

 

                              BUDDHA

You just have to listen.

 

                              LAO TZU

And be like water.

 

                              SALMA

Because love is like water. And I am love. And I am one with all of you.

 

                              DIOGENES

And that’s the truth.

 

                              KALI

I’m gonna go outside and talk to Kevin. Wish me luck!

 

                              STAR

Your wish is granted.

 

(Salma exists. Everyone looks outside the window.)

 

KALI

He sure is cute.

 

                              ISIS

Look at her chase after him.

 

                              KALI

(calling out) Command, not demand.

 

                              ISIS

She’ll be fine.

 

                              JESUS

So what’s going on, guys?

 

                              DIOGENES

Let’s head over to my place. I’m not sure if you can all fit in my wine barrel, but we can try.

 

                              KALI

Sounds like a plan.

 

                              BUDDHA

I’m down.

 

                              ISIS

Why not?

 

                              DIOGENES

Does anyone have a car?

 

                              ISIS

I flew here.

 

                              LAO TZU

I just kind of appeared out of thin air.

 

                              JESUS

We’ll figure it out. We can always ascend. We are Ascended Masters, after all.

 

                              ISIS

And Goddesses.

 

                              KALI

Don’t forget us.

 

                              JESUS

Nobody could ever forget you, Kali.

 

                              KALI

Thanks, Jesus. That means a lot.

 

                              DIOGENES

So, party at my place!

 

                              EVERYONE

Woo hoo!

 

(They all exit, fist punching the air, and giving each other high fives.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Morningstar Allusions and Illusions

A Collection of Plays and Short Fiction

Israel and Vincent are characters originally created for the screenplay Morningstar by Colleen Kellogg. Morningstar is undergoing numerous drafts, before it can be sold. The following plays and short stories diverge greatly from each other and from the screenplay.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Last Call

An Almost Ten-Minute Play

 

Cast of Characters

 

VINCENT MARCUS.....male, mid 30s, dressed in fitted jeans, a black T, and some angel wings - charming, cocky, and “right”

 

ISRAEL WEST.....female, pushing 30, dressed in a pleather mini-skirt, tank top, knee high boots, and a devil’s ears and tail – once optimistic, now hopeful, and tipsy

 

VOICE of BARTENDER, scruffy man’s voice yelled from off stage, appeared to be straight ahead

 

 

 

 

 

 

TIME: The present.

PLACE: A Bar

SETING: A dim-lit, profile bar. No props needed except for two stools on the stage. Drinks and cigarette can be motioned, if simplistic is desired.

 

 

(Background noise on speakers of drunken crowd and music.)

 

(LIGHTS UP to reveal VINCENT, smoking slyly on a stool at the bar, with a cocktail in his other hand.)

 

(Enter ISRAEL wobbling backwards into the empty stool next to Vincent, brushing up against his wings.)

 

ISRAEL

Oh, sorry. (moving on)      

 

VINCENT

Hey, you look familiar. What’s your name?

 

ISRAEL

(annoyed) Israel.

                        

VINCENT

Your last name?

                        

ISRAEL

Why?

 

VINCENT

West?

 

                        ISRAEL

(Holding back from smiling) Yeah! How’d you -

                        

VINCENT

That’s what I thought!

                        

ISRAEL

What?

                        

VINCENT

I’m Vincent (a beat) Marcus.

 

ISRAEL

I couldn’t tell by the wings.

 

Vincent

What does that mean?

 

ISRAEL

I would say nice to meet you, but your book outsold m—

 

                        BARTENDER

LAST CALL!

 

(Music lowers, sounds of crowd gets louder.)

 

                        VINCENT

Last call. Can I buy you a drink?

                        

ISRAEL

Vincent Marcus bye ME a drink? I don’t know...I mean it is last call. (motioning to BARTENDER) I’ll have a double vodka soda!

 

(Israel sits down on the stool.

                        

VINCENT

(to Bartender) You got that?

 

                        

BARTENDER

RIGHT UP!

 

                        VINCENT

We’re tied.

 

(Israel gets her drink.)

                        

ISRAEL

(to Bartender) Thanks!

                        

BARTENDER

SURE THING!

                        

ISRAEL

Tied?

                        

VINCENT

Charts, holidays. Don’t give up hope.

                        

ISRAEL

Holidays? What do holidays have to do with anything?

                        

VINCENT

There are more people like you –

                        

ISRAEL

                        (interrupting, overlapping)

People like me?

                        

VINCENT

                        (overlapping)