May 24, 2006

A Play A Day #41

A Hole

Girl (6 or 7, very cute)

Setting: Blank stage, except one big elevated platform, at least six feet offf the ground, skirted to cover sight lines. Stairs leading up to platform. There is a large hole in the platform. Girl is kneeling, center with a garden spade, she is "digging" in the hole on the platform.

Man: (approaching, sees girl, smiles, bends down to talk to her, he uses a patronizing voice that one often hears when an adult speaks to a small child) What're you doing there, sweetheart?

Girl: (not really acknowledging man) Digging.

Man: Digging?

Girl: Uh-huh.

Man: Oh, my! That looks like tough work!

Girl: No.

Man: What are you digging?

Girl: A Hole.

Man: A hole?

Girl: No.

Man: What?

Girl: Not "a hole".

Man: Oh, but I thought you said that you were digging a hole?

Girl: No.

Man: Well. What are you digging then?

Girl: A Hole.

Man: (now beginning to get confused) But, didn't you just tell me that you were not digging "a hole".

Girl: Yes.

Man: O.K. (pause) So... what are you digging... for real this time, honey.

Girl: A Hole.

Man: So... it is a hole?

Girl: No.

Man: Looks like a hole to me.

Girl: Yep.

Man: It's very big.

Girl: Yes.

Man: Such a big hole from such small hands!

Girl: That's why it's a Hole.

Man: Yes, it is, a very big hole!

Girl: (stops digging, stands up) No, no, no. It's a very big Hole! (she says "Hole" very deliberately and slowly, maybe making a big gesture of some kind.)

Man: (mimicing) I see. A very big hole!

Girl: You don't get it, do you?

Man: (taken aback) What?

Girl: (slowly and clearly) It's not a hole; it's a Hole.

Man: (attempting to mimic) A hole?

Girl: No. That's not what it is.

Man: I'm confused, sweetie. Is it a special hole of some kind?

Girl: No! It's a special (here she stretches up her arms and really drags out the 'H') HHHHHHHole.

Man: I don't...


Man: Oh! I get it, your arms and stretching and the big 'h'... you're saying that it's a "capital H" kind of hole.

Girl: (back to digging) Yep. A very big Hole. Big 'H'.

Man: I get it.

Girl: Good.

Man: Why are you digging such a big Hole?

Girl: It helps me.

Man: Really? How?

Girl: Mommy said, if I'm 'fraid of something; I should go out and dig a big Hole, and put it in the Hole.

Man: Sounds like a smart Mommy!

Girl: Yep. The smartest Mommy in the Universe.

Man: I bet. So you put things that frighten you in the Hole and bury them up?

Girl: I don't bury them.

Man: Aren't you afraid they'll just get right back out of the Hole?

Girl: (nodding) I useda be afraid of that, but then I figured out I could put that in the Hole too.

Man: Oh! You're very smart!

Girl: Thank you.

Man: And now, you're not afraid of things that you're afraid of climbing out of the Hole?

Girl: Yep.

Man: Wow! What else have you put in there?

Girl: The dark!

Man: Yes, I see! It's a very dark Hole!

Girl: And lightning and thunder!

Man: That must have been hard!

Girl: Mommy helped.

Man: (pause) Anything else?

Girl: Just a few monsters.

Man: (pretending to be scared) Monsters?! Where?!!

Girl: (small laugh) Don't worry, they're down the Hole!

Man: (feigning relief) Phew? I was nervous!

Girl: Sometimes, I come out in the early morning when it's real quiet, and listen.

Man: You listen to the Hole?

Girl: Uh-huh.

Man: (with a sense of intrigue) What do you hear?

Girl: Thunder! And some of the monsters, still screaming!

Man: They just scream forever!

Girl: No, they stop after a while.

Man: That's a relief, huh?

Girl: Yeh, it sure is. Usually, it only takes a couple days. One time, the monster screamed for a whole week!

Man: Must have been a very big monster!

Girl: Yeah! It was real big and horrible and smelled bad. It screamed like crazy. Usually, the monsters don't scream at all. Mommy said most monsters probly can't live after they fall into such a deep Hole.

Man: Wow! I'll bet your Mommy helped get those monsters too, right?

Girl: (standing now, proud) No! I got'em all by myself!

Man: All of them!?

Girl: Yep! Monsters are stupid!

Man: (big laugh at that comment) Sure they are!

Girl: I heard one this morning... a monster! (she kneels down, listening)

Man: (mimicing the girl, stage whisper) I don't hear it.

Girl: (shushing him) Shhhh!!

Man: (pause, humors girl, whisper) Ohh! I heard it!

Girl: (stands up) I wish it would stop screaming like that!

Man: (still listening) It says it wants food!

Girl (pushing Man hard on the butt with her foot) Then go feed it!

(Man gives "falling yell" as he goes down the hole. Girl leans over Hole. Looks around, then kneels down and goes back to her digging. Woman approaches.)

Woman: (patronizingly) What're doing there, sweetheart?

Girl: Digging.

Woman: Digging?

Girl: Uh-huh.

Woman: You must be a very good digger!

Girl: Yep.

Woman: Such a big hole!

Girl: It's not a hole; it's a Hole.

Woman: What?

Girl: (stands up, she is tired, and growing impatient, she crosses her arms, and says, as if reciting a line from a script that has become very tedious indeed) I said: "It's not a hole; it's a Hole."

Woman: Yes... what, honey?

Girl: (very impatiently) Look lady, can we just skip all this crap, and get to the part where you lean over the Hole and listen for the monsters?

Woman: Ummm... monsters? In the hole?

Girl: Yeah, listen.

Woman: (dutifully kneeling down and listening, genuinely surprised) I... I... I think I hear someone moaning down there!

Girl: Yep, he can't wait to meet you. (pushes Woman in)

(Girl looks down hole, wipes her brow, and starts to walk off the platform, the lights begin to fade, Girl looks back at the Hole, then at the audience)

Girl: Those two should keep Mommy company for a while.

(goes down steps, lights out by now)


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