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A Poet's Tale (All 5 ACTS) (1 Viewer)



Jonathan – a computer programmer
Deborah – one of Jon’s coworkers
Richard – Deborah’s boyfriend
Ronald – A detective
Darrel – Ronald’s Assistant
Bill – Jon’s boss


Scene 1:

[Jon, Deborah, and Bill are on an office floor. Jon is in his cubical. He is standing just tall enough that he can see into the next cubical over. Jon hears someone coming and sits back down in his chair.]

Bill: What are you doing, Jon?

Jon: Just trying to get Jeremy’s program running.

Bill: Let me have a look at it. You haven’t ended the program. You need a set of parentheses there to end your code. How long have you been working on this?

Jon: No more than half an hour.

Bill: It’s taken you half an hour and you didn’t see that it needed ending parentheses? You’ve been making a lot of mistakes lately. Are you sure you’re doing alright? Maybe you should take a few days off.

Jon: No. I’m fine. I’ve just been a little out of it lately.

Bill: Well, figure out what it is soon, and get back to the programming you’re supposed to be doing.

Jon: Yes, sir. [Bill leaves. Deborah passes by his cubical] Deborah, how are you doing today?

Deborah: I am doing well. How are you?

Jon: I am as always fair. How is Richard?

Deborah: He is doing very well. He just got a job at another company. He’s marking a lot more money, and hopefully it will not be long before we are married.

Jon: Are you two engaged yet?

Deborah: Oh no. He hasn’t asked me yet, but I’m sure he will soon. I can tell something has been on his mind lately, and I hope that’s it.

Jon: Will you still work here after you are married?

Deborah: I am not sure. I might move up north with him, or maybe he’ll move down here. We haven’t really figured it out yet.

Jon: You’ll have to tell me if you two get engaged.

Deborah: I will. Well, there’s Richard with his BMW. I’ll see you later.

Jon: See you tomorrow. [Deborah leaves]
[aside] Deborah is so lovely. I would date her were it not for her boyfriend. There is no way a geek like me can compete with him. As Deborah reminds Bridget often, Richard drives a BMW. I only have a Ford. I don’t know why I torture myself like this. It is a fleeing dream. All I will ever have is my endless screens of code. I will never know the touch of her warm smooth skin. I am an idiot for even thinking about these things. [Deborah leaves] He gives her endless kisses. If I were her boyfriend so would I. I shall never know what that would be like.

Scene 2:

[Jon leaves to his apartment. There is a bed on one wall, a couch in the center and a TV in front of the couch. Next to the TV is a pile of black and white movies. There is also a large pile of poetry on the other side of the TV]

Jon: I am not the man she thinks I am. I am not who anyone would except. I am not a geek or nerd. Secretly I write poetry. I watch the classics. I read Shakespeare almost every day. I dream of knights and ladies. I hate these unsatisfying action movies of today. They have no plot or good characters. I think of these things constantly. I would write a book if I only knew how to start.

All she sees is this rugged corpse. She does not see my heart. I am not bitter and boring like so many men of today. I am kind and gentle like the Knights of the Round Table. I use force only when needed. Over the years I have learned how to woo but am too afraid to attempt it. What would I do if she said no? Is there even a woman today who wants to be wooed? Most would have their ten-minute men. They have their man cling to their arm as they parade their bodies through the streets. I think it is disgusting and only a perverted form of love. No. It is not even love. It is nothing but slimy lust.

What ever happened to playing the guitar under the window? What happened to reciting poetry of old to her? Where did all the kisses on the hands go?

Why do I think of these things? Who else in this world thinks like this? I am trapped in this life. I dream so much of another world. I see myself there as another person. I am bold and confident instead of this spineless man I am today. I remember Deborah before she knew Richard. She was as lovely as ever. I wanted to ask her out so many times, but I never did. What a coward am I. I wish I could put aside this worthless and witless man for but a moment. I would fly to her and kiss her on the cheek, but like all spells, it must end. I would turn back into myself, and she would leave me again. There is no hope for me with her.

[Looking through the pile of movies] There’s no classic here I haven’t seen a dozen times. I’ve memorized every line. There’s no book of poetry I haven’t read. I used to love it, but now I find my taste for rhymed words is severely lessoned.

[Sits on the couch] How did it come to this? How did I ever sink so low? I left my childhood friends and family in Nevada. I came to California seeking my fortune, but I have found nothing. I only have this vacant apartment with only one poster on the wall, and I crave the love of a woman I will never have. Why could I not be someone famous or passionate? Why can’t I be romantic? Why have I never known anything outside these white walls? Why have I come to be bound in this prison as if I have committed some terrible sin? What have I done to deserve this?

What would it be like to give it all away for some wild thing, and to press this life to the limits of my imagination and become whoever I desire to be? That is so out of character for me, it just might work, but I do not know how to become someone else, and I do not know who to be. Would I do all this for a woman’s affection? How should I recover should she refuse my love, and I am left alone once again with my infection? I do not think my heart could take it. These good plans I weave can be only to deceive. She has fallen in love with another, and I must lie to have her fall in love with me. This would not be true love. This would be forced love, and what good is that?

Unless it is not a lie, but the truth. I do not know who I am, but only know who I am not. Perchance I am that other man and am in disguise now instead of the opposite. Yes. I am bent on it now. So easily is my mind given into it. What deeds shall await me? What will my new path be? What shall I suffer to bend her mind? What must I do for her to call me kind?

So quickly this new wave comes over me. I only hope I will find the man I am supposed to be. Am I hidden there in the cleft of her hand? Am I behind those beautiful blue eyes? Where is that man I am to be? Surely there must be a place for me. I have not found him in these tangled coils. He is not in the endless code. I will surely find him if I woo her. As she rests in my arms, I will find him. We will be together always.

First, I must attend to the changing of myself. What shall be the paper on which I will write my tale? This world is far too frail for such a yarn, and I am far too weak to woo here. Not in this world will my seduction lie, but in a world where I am more godlike. I will create a world like a dream. I will sew it with a golden seam. The stars will linger low, words will walk to and fro. Poetry will ooze out of my world like a brook. There I will open up my heart and let her look. She will not see this average man that she now calls Jon. In my eyes she will see the light of poetry dawn.

I will forge this world out of the backbone of my knowledge. I have spent my life being ruled by computers, but now I will rule them. They will become the slaves of my imagination, and I will give birth to my wonderful creation. It will be wonderful. It will be beautiful. She will stand in awe of my mind, and we will be one of a kind. I would do all this just to show you how much I really care. Deborah, you have only to take my hand, and we are there.

[Jon looks through the phone book for a moment and then calls a number]

Jon: Yes. I was wondering if you sell mainframes.

Clerk: Yes, we do.

Jon: I’m going to need accelerated graphics, and several large hard drives. I also need them to work in hot temperatures.

Clerk: We have exactly what you need.

Jon: How much would two of them be?

Clerk: After we make the special modifications you asked for, they would probably be around three or four hundred thousand dollars. I could run the numbers for you if you’d like.

Jon: That will not be necessary. Thank you. [Hangs up] I don’t even know anyone with that much money much less anyone who would be willing to lend it to me.

But come, squeamish boy, let foul deeds awake. Your precious morals must be put at stake. All will have to be sacrificed for love if I am to have the prettiest dove.

There is a place where I can find the things I need. In fact, it is familiar to me. I can gain entrance to it without struggle. Getting out, that’s the torture. How would I slip past the guard carrying such a burden? Surely someone will see, and the police will come to get me. But if the guard were dead, not a word would be said. It would be innocently simple.
Come now, mind, back from your horrid state. Why should you mar your perfectly clean slate? This woman loves another. She cannot love you. I will not have her torn in two.

To have her close to my side and touch her silky skin is worth all the evils this world within. Come, mind, shake off this moral dilemma, choose and never go back. Decide now to stay or attack because I refuse to be a double-minded man.

I will fight for her as well as anyone can. Dark deeds no more boil in my brain. Too long has my slate been without a stain. Morals, fly. Darkness, come. Guards will die before I’m done.

Scene 3

[Jon, dressed in black, is approaching his work]

Jon: Here I am in the dark, covered in shadow and in sin. But hush now, someone comes from within.

Voice 1: That’s why I told them not to do it, but headquarters had to have it their way.

Voice 2: Oh well, it’s not your fault. We’ll get a fresh start on it in the morning. Oh wait, it is morning.

Voice 1: I really do love the money you get when you’re a technician, but I hate the hours sometimes.

Voice 2: I’m with you there. See you tomorrow.

Voice 1: Bye.

Jon: Come to my aid, darkness. Give me the strength to do what I never even considered before this. [Jon enters the building taking out his two guns]

Guard: What are you doing? [Jon shoots him]

Jon: We hold life too closely to our hearts anyway. We callously go through it every day. Why do we weep so when it ends? [He gets his two large dollies and comes back inside. He goes upstairs and unhooks the two mainframe computers. He brings them down one by one into a moving truck. As he is brining the second down, a janitor sees him. The janitor just stands there, and Jon shoots him.]

[Jon leaves the mainframe on the dolly while he goes to Deborah’s desk.] And what shall I give you that I may win your love? I could give you words. I could sing to you. I could recite to you my poetry. I will do none of these things, and yet I will do all of these things with this simple gift. [He places a red rose on her desk.] I have written you a note and signed it as your secret admirer. You may wonder who it will be, but I doubt you’d ever think it was me. You see only the outside. You see the part which has died. But if you would stray a little from your common way, you might have something else to say. I am no longer this idle man. If you would just dare to take a look, I will show you a world untold. Let me open my heart as a book, and I will let my love unfold. Deborah [He kisses the flower and leaves].

[Jon is driving away into the night.] What is love that I should risk so much for a thing I cannot even put into a word? It is the deepest emotion. It is what makes the world turn. It is perhaps the most precious gift we know. It is all these things, and yet it is so much more. I have come to think of it as the thread with which our very lives are spun, and if I am not careful it will be the thing by which I am undone.


Scene 1:

[It is two days later. The police have already conducted their investigation of the building at his has been reopened for work. Deborah is coming up to her desk. She puts her bag on the floor and sits at her chair.]

Deborah: What is this? [She picks up the flower and reads the card] Am I to be stalked by a secret admirer? It is not very hard to guess who it is. This rose is several days old, and how would Richard have put it here? He cannot come inside the building. There must be another person who stalks me.

Bill: [Coming up to Deborah’s desk] Did you hear the news?

Deborah: What news?

Bill: The police are saying that Jon did all this. They say he killed the guard and the janitor and stole the two computers.

Deborah: They say Jon did this? I never knew him very well, but he definitely didn’t seem like the kind of person who would murder anyone. That’s crazy. I knew him.

Bill: I knew him better than you did. I never say this coming.

Deborah: Do you think he did it?

Bill: Well, he did run away.

Deborah: What do you mean?

Bill: The police searched his house, but they found no sign of him. He has apparently left town.

Deborah: Why would he do this? Stealing two mainframe computers doesn’t sound like the work of an accomplished computer programmer.

Bill: I know what you mean. I don’t really make sense. He had a good job here. He was making more than he would ever need. I am clueless. Any way you look at it, it doesn’t make sense.

Deborah: He obviously has something in mind for those two computers. Maybe he’s planning on selling them to the highest bidder somewhere.

Bill: But I still don’t see why. He had all the money he needed. As far as I know, he lived alone in his apartment.

Deborah: He was a fairly private person. Perhaps if I had been friendlier to him, he would not have gone off the deep end.

Bill: Well, don’t blame yourself. I’m sure there’s a whole lot to the story we don’t know. We can’t really say anything for certain. I’m just happy that the headquarters mainframes are able to handle the load for right now. If we didn’t have them, he would have probably ruined our company.

Deborah: Do you think that was maybe what he was trying to do?

Bill: I still don’t see a reason why. As far as I knew, he was perfectly happy with this company. Anyway, I have a meeting to go to. Don’t think about it too hard. [He leaves]

Deborah: Why would a man like that snap? I talked to him even the day before, and everything seemed to be perfectly alright. A man would not be so dramatic for anything I know of. Even love does not possess a man so deeply. Perhaps it was insanity. That is the only answer that makes sense, but he was not insane when I knew him. He was just a man. He was perhaps a bit sad but nothing too extreme. I will never know what really happened. I will never see into his mind, and that is that.

Scene 2:

[Jon is standing at the doorway to an abandoned underground building.]

Jon: Memories, come back to me now for I have forgotten how to be a child like I once was long ago. These walls were filled with hopes and dreams and things I used to know.
I can still see Jamie standing just over there. Right here is Natalie the great brown grizzly bear. I was Robinson Crusoe on my desert isle. No one wondered why there was a grizzly bear on such a narrow strip of land. We were so good at doing what children do. We were not adults we did not think things through. We did not care about the living habits of the bear. Tim was the tree. We couldn’t think of anything else for him to be. He kept moving and talking which annoyed us all. We finally decided the tree had to fall.

What I would not give to have those days back again to spend all hours of free time in our darkish den.

Why do I want the past or the future but never the present? What have I become now that this monster has seized me? With my own two hands I have taken another’s life. If that were not enough I took another just for spite. How will she love a man with blood on his hands? Will she not shrink back in terror of what I’ve become? Will she not see that I do this not for me but for her? That is why I must make my gift so grand. If it is great enough, all will wither away in shadow. Nothing else will matter when she stands before my world. There she’ll see the wonderful product from this man inside of me. How will she refuse?

All her boyfriend’s blasted cars and his sparkled diamond stars will be nothing in comparison with my gift I can give. If only I can finish it before her wedding night, I will show her a world she can only see through sight. Then I’ll hold her in my arms as my world unfolds before her eyes. She’ll cling to me forever as her love for Richard dies.

The sweetest thing of all will be that we do not grow old but live eternally. In my blessed world time will be no more. I shall bar the door of this underground cave. We shall not grow old as this world does. We shall live eternally in our small community. We shall have what others don’t. We’ll have plot and reason and a love that will last throughout a thousand lifetimes.

Who can give you such a gift, my love? Who can take your suffering away? I am the only man you will ever need. I’ll give you my heart, and you can touch it. You can look at it like a diamond. You can know every part. There will be nothing I will hide before your lovely naked eye. What more can you ask of me, my love? Oh Deborah, you are my perfect dove.

This world has thrown me out and called me insane. They say I am an old timer before my age. Just because I love the classics and the poetry does not mean I am crazy just not part of this society. I see nothing that I want in this temporary world. I have come to hate the garbage that they call truest life. I know there is more to life than sex and appearance. Oh yes, appearance. I have seen the women cut open. I have beheld the men in surgery. They butcher themselves for the sake of modeling. Oh yes, modeling. They would use a knife to cut away the ugliness they see, but what they are chasing after may not on the outside be. But what they do not see in all the gaining of their cuts and scars is that they are beautiful within themselves. Each personality is different each face a little skewed. We should love each other besides our petty differences, but the world cannot see this so they fall to absurdity.

Because they have shut me out, I will shut them out. They will not even know what my world is about. It will be for her and only her except perhaps for her evil lover. She alone is worthy to behold my mind. I only bring that other man to have some representation of this worthless world’s kind. I will give her the choice between the two of us. She can choose this man’s garbage world or live with me eternally in my mind most rapturous. And when she chooses me, I will know the full effects of what I’ve done. I will know the product of my life will not be undone. I will sing to her with voices of the greatest kind of joy. We will rise above this world, and life will be our baby toy. We will take the riddles of the ages and solve them in our spare time. Oh, Deborah! It will be more than I can say.

The sand in my hourglass slowly slips away. I must hurry before I lose the light of day.

Scene 3:

[Two detectives are sitting at their desks in the police station. They are discussing their current case.]

Darrel: He snapped. There’s nothing to think about. He was a pretty good computer programmer, and then one day he saw one letter too much of code and went crazy. He probably stole those computers so he could dump them in the river and be done with the whole thing. He probably just became insanely tired of programming. I get that way all the time at my job, and I’m sure you do to.

Ron: You go out and kill two people?

Darrel: You know what I mean. This guy just took it a little two far, or back to the money theory. He just wanted a bunch of money. I mean, who the hell wouldn’t want a couple extra hundred thousand dollars in the wallet?

Ron: But he had enough money. He had no need of it.

Darrel: Come on, man. Everyone needs money. I don’t care who they are. Money just isn’t something you can have enough of.

Ron: Then why didn’t he empty his bank accounts? He didn’t take anything with him that we can tell. His savings was left completely untouched. How do you explain that?

Darrel: The guy wasn’t exactly normal to begin with. I mean really. His entire collection of movies consisted of black and white VHS’s? This guy had stacks of poetry next to his computer. I don’t know of any computer programmers who read poetry. It really isn’t in right now especially with the young people. How old did you say he was?

Ron: Twenty-eight.

Darrel: See what I mean? I’m starting to wonder if this is his first murder. Are there any other murders that fit his style?

Ron: What do you mean his style? He put a bullet through one guy’s chest and a bullet through a janitor’s brain. He doesn’t exactly have a unique style. His style is very similar to ninety percent of the gun murders in this city.

The only thing that gets me is that he didn’t even care. He left his prints everywhere. They were even on the mainframe room floor. It doesn’t seem to be well thought out. It’s sloppier than anything. So either it’s his first murder or he was under a lot of pressure and messed up.

Darrel: I don’t know what he’s planning on doing with those computers. They’ll attract so much attention if he tries to sell them that we’ll be on him in a second. I mean, it’s not exactly every day that somebody tries to sell mainframe computers under the table.

Ron: This case is weird.

Darrel: You don’t have to tell me that. I saw that coming as soon as I read the report about the computers.

Ron: The strangest thing he did before he killed those people was that he missed his Sunday afternoon call to his parents. This guy was fine until one night. I think you’re right. He just snapped.

Darrel: Now if we could only find him. I would have though he’d go crying back to his parents.

Ron: Apparently not.

Darrel: You kind of have to feel sorry for him. I mean, you saw his apartment. He had nothing. He just stockpiled his money into his bank accounts. He really didn’t have anything to lose by doing this. Maybe he was just bored with life and wanted some excitement. Reading endless lines of code would do that to me.

Ron: I think I’ll swing by his apartment one more time before I go home. I want to make sure there are no clues we’ve missed.

Darrel: Well, you do what you want. I’m going home to see my wife and kids. I’ve got a hot meal waiting for me.

Ron: Hey, I’ve got a hot meal for me too. I’ve just got to swing by a restaurant and pick it up.

Darrel: Get a girlfriend, man, and get one who can cook.

Scene 4:

[Deborah and Richard are at a fancy restaurant.]

Deborah: I got your rose this morning.

Richard: My rose?

Deborah: Yes. You sent me that rose didn’t you?

Richard: I never sent you a rose today.

Deborah: Did you send it last week because it looked kind of wilted?

Richard: I haven’t sent you a rose in at least a couple of months.

Deborah: Then who was it from? The letter attached to it said it was from my secret admirer.

Richard: A secret admirer? How romantic. You surely know who it is.

Deborah: Actually, I don’t. I have a few guesses as to their identity, but both have wives. I don’t have a clue who it might be.

Richard: A rose with a note attached to it confessing the love of a man who will not show his face. That’s a clever idea. I wish I had thought of it myself. There’s no need to worry. I’ll fight him off because you’re all mine. You don’t think it could be that man who attack your work do you?

Deborah: Jonathan? No. There’s no way it could be him.

Richard: Maybe there’s some crazy connection to him stealing those computers and then leaving you a rose. He might be some serial killer or something.

Deborah: No. I don’t think so. He seemed kind.

Richard: Kind? He murdered a guard and a janitor and stole two computers. I would not call that kind.

Deborah: Still, I saw something in his eyes that I haven’t been able to shake off. He spoke to me sometimes. He was always polite and well mannered, but he seemed almost troubled.

Richard: That’s more like what I’d say. He was troubled and finally took out his problems on other people.

Deborah: In any case, it’s sad really. His life is over and it has only begun. I don’t think he was older than thirty and he has the police chasing him. Once they catch up to him, he’ll spend the rest of his life in jail. That’s a terrible end to a brilliant mind. I wish I could have known him better.

Richard: There was nothing you could have done. The man was filled with hatred and rage. Your kind words wouldn’t have been enough to bring him back. People like that don’t change.

Deborah: And I suppose you’re the expert?

Richard: Come, let’s talk about happier matters.

Deborah: Let’s.

Richard: We’ve been going out together for quite some time now.

Deborah: Yes. We have.

Richard: I wanted to do something special tonight. I know how much you love Shakespeare so I got you two tickets to see Romeo and Juliet. It starts in a little over an hour.

Deborah: Two ticket? Who will I take? I think that busboy over there is attractive.

Richard: Not going to go for our waiter? He seemed to have a keen interest in you.

Deborah: I don’t like his lazy eye. I’d sit there staring at it while the play was on. I need someone more handsome. I need someone thoughtful and caring. I need someone I know I can trust.

Richard: The chef!

Deborah: No. He’s probably too fat. So I’ll take you.

Richard: Ah, I thought you would never ask me. [They leave for the theater]


Scene 1

[The underground building now converted into a tangled mess of wires and computer parts.]

Jon: It is beautiful and elegant. It is more wonderful than all I’ve dreamed before. I’ve spent the last whole day just working on the entry way. It is perfect. She will wake when she enters my new world, and there she’ll see her horses and carriage waiting silently. I filled the entryway with the most radiant white snow, but I made it not too cold that you cannot barefoot go. White is the color I have chosen for her. White is the color of the snow, the carriage, and even the color of the horses’ fur. The black stones I’ve placed for her will lead her on. She will board the carriage and without the aid of a master, the horses will find their way. They will bring her to my side.

She will wear a dress made of lace of the purest form of white. When she comes to me, I will behold that sight. She will see before her eyes the wonder she could never find. At long last she will stand in awe of the beauty of my mind. She’ll throw off the garbage of this world and men of Richard’s kind. She will cling to me alone and in this solace she will find the purest form of love that yet still flows untouched by time. When she drinks from that fountain of the purest flow, at long last the poison will from her body go.

She will look into my eyes and thank me for saving her, and then I’ll cast this demon’s face aside and know and worship her. We’ll rise together through the air like notes on the wind and there we’ll fly together her and I.

Oh, that my heart would stop it furious beating that I may get some work done for I daydream more than I write, and this will not help to make things right. Come now, feeble mind, to your task at hand. Not much more of this dungeon must you stand. Soon you’ll be free, and your loneliness will die. No more nights spent alone within this rotting flesh. All will end before your eyes and be made afresh.

And that will be the greatest thing of all. I will find a place for me somewhere I belong somewhere it does not feel all wrong. It will be bliss to dance with her in the snow. We’ll be wrapped in dreams and clothed in harmony. Life will touch us on the face. He’ll laugh and play his flute for us to dance to. All the questions will fade away. The darkness cannot stay against the truest light of day. We will bask in the sunlight of my riddled mind.

The answers to the riddles will be locked within our hearts. We’ll sing like the birds of the morning sun. There will be the place for me far from the insanity. Tears will fill my eyes as I look into her face. I will be free, and if that were not enough, I will be given the most beautiful woman in the world, and she will love me.

There is a bliss that cannot be put into poetry. The poets write, the singers sing, and the dreamers dream, but still they cannot know my radiant joy on that day. It will not be put into things so low as the lofty word’s way. The dreamers have not seen, the poets have not written, and the singers have not sung even half of what I’ve done.

Now that I have fallen, I must wear a disguise to see my one truest friend. Only letting her see my eyes, I hope I can somehow bring her mind to bend. Were she to see my face, she would shriek back because of the evil I have done. There is no hope left for me in this dark world. The police haunt me, Richard’s presence is all around, and Deborah will not even look upon my face without a mask. I cannot wait to escape to my heaven. How wonderful it is that I will not be alone there. I will finally have someone who actually does care.

Only write a few more lines and then we’ll go. I must make a house call before tomorrow’s sun. There are some deeds in this world witch must still be done.

Scene 2:

[Ron and Darrel are getting coffee at a sidewalk vendor.]

Ron: It just doesn’t make sense. There has to be more to it than we can see. We haven’t even come up with a reasonable motive yet.

Darrel: I’m not sure there has to be a reason. From everything I’ve gathered so far, I think this guy was just crazy. He just acted insanely. That damn fool doesn’t know how to make change. Look, he gave me an extra quarter and dime. At least it’s in my favor. How do you give someone thirty-five cents too much change on a dollar twenty order?

Ron: But people don’t just go crazy one day.

Darrel: I don’t know. I’ve exhausted all my brain power trying to come up with an explanation that fits, but there really isn’t one. I’ve pretty much given up trying. He’s bound to show up sooner or later. There would be no point in holding on to those computers. He’s got to make a move soon.

Ron: Yes, but I hate just sitting here and waiting. What if he’s some kind of mad scientist?

Darrel: What do you mean?

Ron: I mean, what if he had some crazy idea that was way out? He didn’t think anyone would invest in his idea, so he steals these computers to create it himself.

Darrel: What kind of crazy idea would a computer programmer get that reads poetry and watches black and white movies?

Ron: There’s got to be a clue there that we don’t see. He didn’t like the modern entertainment. What do all the old classics have in common with poetry?

Darrel: They’re all about life and love.

Ron: Love?

Darrel: I’m sorry. That’s an emotion when two people like each other. I keep forgetting that you don’t have a girlfriend.

Ron: Funny. Maybe he didn’t like the way the world was. He’d rather have it like Casablanca or It’s a Wonderful Life.

Darrel: So what does that mean for us?

Ron: Maybe we should start searching the places that are like those old movies.

Darrel: Sounds like a wild goose chase to me.

Ron: What kind of places would those be?

Darrel: Almost all those old movies have nightclubs in them.

Ron: Smart thinking. We can start there. We’ll find out if anyone has seen him around lately.

Darrel: Sounds like a plan.

Scene 3:

[Deborah’s house far outside of town. Jon is approaching wearing a mask and cape.]

Jon: So this is the place where my lover lives? Everything about her really is first rate. Over that there can be no debate. It seems only fitting that such a beautiful woman would live in such a beautiful house, and I, who am ugly inside, live in a shack. It is not even a shack. It is an abandoned complex under the ground, but at least there I will not ever be found.

I wonder sometimes if she is not too attached to this world she’s in. Will she even desire to go to my new world and be lost within? There are no BMW’s or Mercedes Bens. She will have to do without ever seeing those again.

She will no doubt miss her family, and she’ll never see her friends again. How could I tear her from this world so casually? What if she kicks and screams to be let out? I must give her what she wants and let her leave, but what will I do without her by my side?

Foolish mind, you are so flighty. Here you stand before her house, but you will not go in. You stand outside prancing to and fro. You wonder if you should stay or go. There is no choice here, you’ve already made it. Take the steps to the stairs of your lover’s house. There you’ll find her reading or gazing at the stars. There you will begin your wooing.
I fear to go. My feet will not climb the steps. I grow nervous and sweaty. Even with this mask I am still a coward when it comes to love. What is so hard about it? You have practice this every moment of the hours of the day, but when you come before her face you want to turn and run away. Let this mask guide your way let it help you to fight and stay. There can be no other way. You have not come this far to fail now. You must go in to her. You must go in to her.

Just cast aside this mortal struggle that keeps weighing you down. You must be strong and find the way to appear before her now.
[He enters her house and finds her reading in the study. He stands at the doorway.]

Jon: Do not be alarmed.

Deborah: Who are you?

Jon: I will not hurt you.

Deborah: I don’t know that. I’m going to call the police.

Jon: If the worlds fell down and the all people drown and I stood before the face of God in fear, if He told me I could make it right by only hurting you, that one thing I could not bring myself to do.

Deborah: What do you want of me?

Jon: I have come to give you this, [hands her a rose] and to speak for a while.

Deborah: You are my secret admirer?

Jon: I am not so secret anymore.

Deborah: I know your eyes. Those dark spheres filled with love and pain I’ve seen them once before. Could it be at the theater or the movies or perhaps some dancing floor?

Jon: Woman, you don’t know me. I am only a dying shadow. I cannot linger long in this world, and so I’ve built my own. It is beautiful beyond comparison with trickling streams and snowy woods. In my sanctuary there are no ill-looks, self-centered minds, or cloaks or hoods. There is only glorious beauty in its perfect form. All would call it good from God to dwellers of the poor neighborhood. It is agreed that it is beautiful indeed. There is no blemish or spot that one is able to see. It is like this woman who stands not very far from me.

Deborah: What is this sweet seduction that you bring before my door? I’ve never heard anything sound so wonderful before. In this sin-laden world, things are always worse than they seem, but this your world sounds better than I’ll ever dare to dream. I’m sure I cannot know the fullest beauty of what beats within your brain, but just hearing you speak of it, I am richer than the greatest lord or Dane. Why should this privilege be mine a woman of low state in womankind?

Jon: Put those thoughts aside, lovely child. You are precious enough to be saved by my wild creation. You alone are worthy of this serf’s imagination. I have built this world with only you in mind. I have looked through pages of womankind. I have searched for one of beauty who will be true, and in all the world I’ve searched I’ve found only you.

Deborah: Who is this man before me? How does he see inside of me? How do you know what I’m like? What if I were worse than this? What if I were unworthy of bliss? Sweet stranger, you don’t know who I am. You’ve judged far too high of what I am inside. I am not this radiant angel that you think you’ve found. I’m cursed like the rest of us and in sin I abound. I’m a weedy garden needing tending and a good raking through. My life isn’t what I’d thought it would be. God, at times, can be harsh to me. I’ve fallen like an angel from His radiant gaze. I’ve taken burning coals of sin and scourged my heart within. I’ve lost my wings, and I can’t find them or fly anymore. I can’t go with you up there because I cannot soar.

Jon: I will be your wings in darkness. I will be your support when you fly. We’ll soar and leave this dismal world behind. I’ll open the cage and set you free, and then we’ll fly eternally. All you have to do is take my hand and there we are. Come with me and you’ll see that it is not very far. Come away with me now.

Deborah: There is only one thing now which stands in my way. I want to see your face in the light of the day. Foreign lover, what ill has befallen you that you must wear a mask within my view?

Jon: I will show you in time. You will know all in time.

Deborah: Damned are the thoughts that say that it must be this way. Come I’ll take it off of you and we will be one. We’ll fly through the sky until our time is done, but first I must know my lover’s face. [She reaches up to the mask.]

Richard: Who is this man? What are you doing? [He steps between them.] I will only warn you once to stay the hell away from my woman. Leave now and I may forgive you. Do you not have ears? Be gone damn you! [Jon leaves out the window]

Deborah: He meant no harm.

Richard: Most vipers don’t, but they kill you all the same.

Deborah: You don’t know who he was. He was not a viper.

Richard: If I had to bet, I’d say he was that man who murdered those two people.

Deborah: Stop it! He was more of an angel than a viper.

Richard: What did he say to you? Tell me!

Deborah: Leave! I want to be alone.

Richard: What have I done wrong here? I just saved you from a murderer. I should be thanked not yelled at.

Deborah: I beg of you. If you love me, please go. I need to be alone.

Richard: Very well. Because I love you, I will go, but I will only be a phone call away. If he returns and tries to hurt you in any way, call me. I’ll come as quickly as I can.

Deborah: [Crying.] Thank you. Richard, I’m sorry. I know you’re only trying to protect me. Say you love me.

Richard: I love you, Deborah. I love you more than a creature like that will ever know.

Deborah: Hold me.

Richard: What did this madman say to you?

Deborah: He spoke poetry to me of flowery romance.

Richard: He tried to woo you?

Deborah: It was different. It was like nothing I’ve ever felt before. He made love to my heart and my mind and soul.

Richard: And what did you say in reply?

Deborah: You do not need to fear him, Richard. I think he is a ghost. I wonder if I could have even touched him or whether my hand would have passed right through. He was a strange man. Poetry and words seemed to be his companions. There was a scented smell of flowers in the air when he passed by.

Richard: The man was no ghost. I saw him with my very eyes, and I would have hit him with my own hand if he had stayed a little longer. I will not have another man making love to you.

Deborah: I really am alright now. You can go.

Richard: Well, I do have pressing matters at hand, but if you need me, don’t hesitate to call me. Will you promise me something?

Deborah: What?

Richard: If he shows up again, will you call me?

Deborah: I will.

Richard: Then I shall go. [He kisses her and leaves.]


Scene 1:

[The police station. Ron and Darrel are at their desks.]

Darrel: So how is that search coming?

Ron: Not well. I found one bartender who thought he recognized him, but he hasn’t seen him in months. I wasn’t sure that he knew the guy we’re looking for anyway.

Darrel: I was talking about the search for a girlfriend.

Ron: Ha, ha, funny, funny.

Darrel: So what are we going to do now?

Richard: Are you two gentlemen the ones working on the murder and computer case.

Darrel: We’re not exactly gentlemen, [He cleans out his ear with his finger and flings it across the room.] but yes it’s our case.

Richard: I think I may have a lead for you since you seem otherwise unoccupied.

Darrel: Hey, we don’t tell you how to be a rich snob, and you don’t tell us how to conduct police investigations.

Ron: Anyway, you said you had a lead?

Richard: Yes. My girlfriend, who worked with your suspect, has been visited by a stranger. He dresses up in a mask and cape.

Darrel: You mean like Zorro? I like those movies. Oh man, this case is getting to me. Now I’m talking about old black and white VHS classics. I need a vacation.

Richard: Do you mind?

Darrel: Sorry.

Richard: He’s apparently had his eye on her for quite some time. He left her a rose the night he murdered those two men.

Darrel: Hey, if this is your way to get rid of her old boyfriend, you can count us out. It’s not our problem that you can’t confront.

Ron: Darrel, please.

Darrel: Alright. What did this guy look like? Was he tall, fat, bald?

Richard: He was defiantly taller.

Ron: Did your girlfriend say she recognized him?

Richard: No, but she seemed to be clouded by emotions.

Darrel: [Aside] Who talks like that? I wanted to go to the park, but I was clouded by emotions.

Ron: What do you mean?

Richard: Well, he tried to woo her. I don’t think she would have told me even if she did recognize him.

Darrel: So this really is your way of getting rid of the old boyfriend, huh?

Richard: I have come to believe that this man and your murderer are one and the same.

Darrel: [Aside] If you don’t stop talking like that, my fist and your face are about to be one and the same.

Richard: I think he offered to take her away somewhere, and I think she might go with him.

Ron: He must be hiding somewhere. He wouldn’t be moving around with those computers. Let’s

Richard: It’s critical that you do not tip off my girlfriend to your watching her. She may know where he is hiding, and if you tip her off, he might run away. I’d lose her forever, and that is not something I am willing to do.

Darrel: [Aside. Rocking his head back and forth and shooting out his lower lip.] And that is not something I am willing to do because I might get lonely with all my money. I really do get tired of counting it sometimes.

Ron: Alright, we’ll need her address and phone numbers. We’ll head out there right away.

Richard: Thank you so much [Shakes Ron’s hand, looks at Darrel, and leaves.].

Scene 2:

[Jon is back at his underground building.]

Jon: I am foiled once again by this world of sin. How long will it before we enter in? Damn that man. I will kill him if he ruins my plan. I will tear him apart with my bare hands and leave his body in the sun. It will only be buried after decay and the vultures are done.

Why do I not do it now? I already know how. It would be easy to kill him, and once he’s dead, there will be nothing standing in our way. Deborah and I will be together on that very day. This will be the end of him. He will no longer dilute the minds of women. After my last stroke fell, he will spend the rest of his days with his blasted BMW’s in Hell.

Recoil, my violent hand. You must consider their band. He is tied to Deborah’s heart. To tear him out might leave a gash that time cannot mend. To Hell not quite yet can I him send. His time may come when all else is done.

Richard is the one who loses in the end. What has he done to deserve such a death? He is somewhat like me. He sees beauty where I see beauty. He knows Deborah is a woman of the highest grace. He has put aside his money and sought her face.

Curse, curse it all. How can I strip away from him the woman he loves when he in the end is the better man? He is not a thief and a murderer, and I am certain now that he loves her.

All of this is vanity. I grow weary of this damned tale of lies and insanity. Why? Why? Why, God? Why was I made with a hole in my heart? Why must love and I always be apart? Why is all I’m good for is to write endless code? Why can’t I know a woman’s love in my own abode? Why does this soul seek solitude? Why when I gain it, I feel alone? What will bring joy and I in atonement? Why don’t I see the life the other’s see?

I wanted the life of the poetry. I wanted words rhymed with music in the darkening void. I wanted life to love me as a woman does. I’d have joy in the deepest recesses of my soul. I’d cry out with the laugher that the lovers know. I’d sing tales of my innocence and hope. It would be so grand I could barely cope. But I was given this infectious body and this rotting mind. I looked for salvation but there were only those of this same kind. I was forced to write endless codes of line to feed this face of mine. Everyday it consumed the same amount of time. I found nothing in the world that could satisfy my soul.

But then I saw her standing there. Looking at her I began to stare. Her eyes were like diamonds in the rough to me. Her body was as beautiful as it could be. Her voice was like music to my ears. I’d give a hundred thousand lifetimes of pain and agony just to stand by her side in ribbons of ebony for a fleeing year. The pain is so much less when she is by my side. If I ever did caress her face, the pain would altogether hide. I will bask in the sunlight of her radiant eyes. In that solitary moment, all evil dies. Life and death circle round me like orbiting spheres. I’ll stray out of time for more than a million years. Waking up, I will find we are completely safe in my mind.

What is happiness? I never used to know. It’s having Deborah by my side and feeling her warm glow.

Am I mad now? Have I strayed over the edge? I have sought the idea like a wolf and his prey. It has filled the voids of my mind every passing day. Am I mad? Surely I am now. Surely I walk the insane way, but what has reason to do with love anyway?

Come now. The hour is late. Very soon now. We’ll all embrace our fate.

Scene 3:

[Deborah’s house]

Deborah: Richard’s gone to the police, I’d say. They’ll be watching all hours of day. I think perhaps I should run away. I’ll try to find this man on my own.

Jon: Come now, my love, to this musical marriage. I have prepared you a golden white carriage. It will lead you silently on, and then you’ll see poetry’s dawn.

Deborah: You. I dreamed of you last night. Afterwards I woke in fright.

Jon: What did you dream?

Deborah: You came back to me as you have now. I reached up to your brow, [She reaches up.] and I touched your face. I let my fingers stray to the edges of your mask, and then I did the task.

Jon: [He takes her hand.] I am not a clever man. This mask does not really even hide my face. For if you search inside yourself, you will find the answer. There will be time enough for this later, but we must go before police come with an investigator. I will take you away to my wonderful world.

Deborah: You assume I have made my choice. I don’t even know your name or the look of your face, and I’m ready to embark with you to perhaps my doom. How do I know bliss awaits me instead of a solitary tomb? We live in a world where people take pleasure in pain. They inflicted on each other as a childish game.

Jon: Look into my eyes and tell me what you see? Just take off this mask if you want to see me. It was stupid and pathetic to wear it anyway. Only look within yourself and you’ll see the key. Let’s be off with this adventure for the last, last time. Off with the mask and into the night. We must hurry to stay out of the police’s sight.

Deborah: You ask me what I see? I see a man riddled in the dark. He is cold and angry as he flies towards his folly. He has stolen and murdered men without mercy. He’s a demon. He’s a devil and raging horde. His face is clinched in hate towards this world that we’re in.

[She touches his face] But there’s another man lying deep within. He is kind and gentle and everything I dream. But he is far more suppressed than the first time I saw you as it would seem.

Where is that man I did love? What have you done with him? I used to dream of being under his gaze again.

He was a man filled with passion as I’ve never known before. He was filled with goodness and love even to his core. And then you replaced him with a demon burning red. Even now I will not believe that he inside is dead.

Jon: It is true. I am filled with anger and hatred towards God and this world. I hate the body I am wrapped in and everything I see. I want to break apart I want to soar and be free. How do I bring him back again? How ever can I fly again?

Deborah: I will be your wings in darkness. I will be your support when you fly. We’ll soar and leave this dismal world behind. I’ll open the cage and set you free, and then we’ll fly eternally. All you have to do is take my hand and we are there. Oh Jonathan, [Deborah reaches up and pulls off the mask.] take me away! Take me away to worlds of wonder. Take me away from all that I see. Take me away me away to where I can fly. Take me away from all that is me. Take me away to where my dreams lie.

Jon: I have wandered in the dark for years. Only knowing pain and weeping tears. The rain of healing now falls down upon me. I think I can see the dawn of poetry. I can see it. There is a place for me somewhere beyond the sky. The heavy chains of dark questions fall off my wrists. I rise up from the darkness and at last I fly. The evil hatred releases my clenched fists. I am free, and you are with me. This is grander than my wildest dreams.

Deborah: What sweet release is this now when it’s all said and done? It’s like when you’ve finished something great. You stand back just for a moment to admire your work. We should hurry before they came and take you away.

Jon: Yes. The hour is very late, and we must embrace our fate. But now they’ll want to know how the last pages were written. They have to see the end of the tale I weave if they want to know if the woman stayed smitten.


Scene 1:

[Deborah’s house]

Richard: Where is she? Where has she gone? If he has laid a finger on her, I will… [He sees the mask] And so she’s gone. Just like that, I’ve lost. It was a good dream while it lasted. [The house phone rings] Hello?

Jon: Because I am a gracious man, I am going to offer you a gentleman’s hand. If you would like to see your love again, you must come alone to the address I will give you. If you bring the police, nasty things could happen.

Richard: If you’ve harmed her in any way, I’ll kill you, I swear.

Jon: Do you really think I’d ever hurt her? We’re not so different you and I. We both see beauty where it really is. Although you’re wrapped up in this world, and I am not, we both still have some of the same struggles.

Richard: I am not like you. I do not murder and kill men for spite. I do not kidnap women for the fun. You, sir, are a devil, and I think I’ll take pleasure in ridding the world of you.

Jon: I’m sorry you feel that way. Now here is the address.

Scene 2:

[Deborah is waking up in Jon’s world. She is wearing a white dress. She is sleeping in a forest filled with snow. There is a little path leading out of the woods to a road.]

Deborah: So this is the beauty of my love’s mind? I’ve seen this place before just another kind. Everything is so familiar to me. I think I will know more if I go and see. But where is my passionate love? Here is the carriage he spoke of. It is as he said of a pale golden white. This carriage and this world is a wondrous sight. [She gets in the carriage and the horses begin pulling down the path.]

What other wonders will I find in this world of his thought? What things of wonder and things of terror has he sought? I find this beautiful forest to be lovely, but also find it to be somewhat lonely. Where is that love of mine? I cannot see a sign.

Jon: [The carriage passes slowly by another path. Jon is waiting there. He climbs onto the carriage while it slowly makes its way through the forest.] Take heart, my love, I’m here. I will never leave. None can hurt you, my dear. Nothing can us cleave. I’m with you always now you’re never alone.

Deborah: I love your world, great one. It is filled somehow with things I used to know. There are feelings I used to have long ago. I’ve slept for a moment and woken in childhood. Everything here is like babies all kind and good. The bright sun is warm upon my face, but another warmth is in this place.

Jon: It is the warmth of my love. It shines down from high above.

Deborah: I have only one small fear.

Jon: What’s that, my dear?

Deborah: Where are the people of your mind? I see none of those of our kind.

Jon: There are no people, my dove. It’s you alone that I love. They are the reason that I built this place, so that I could see only your sweet face. Isn’t it lovely this place of mine? It is, dare I say it, almost divine.

Deborah: What is this your sad hatred of your own kind? Why only joy in me can you find? Did everyone oppress you? Tell me what did they do?

Jon: I think perhaps the fault is not of our kind, but just an infection within my own mind. I’m different from the rest of the people my age. I have nothing in common with people like me. Whenever I’m around them I feel in a cage. They want sex, drugs, and blood and I want poetry. There’s something about rhymed words that fascinates me. But no one seems to understand why. They call me crazy and make me cry. I’m not satisfied with the garbage that the world sucks on. I want something more than all this like the poetry’s dawn. Am I crazy to think there’s more to life than watching vanity and worthless strife?

Deborah: My child, you are more honest and intelligent than us all. You refuse to jump over the cliff all us idly fall. I can now see your mind as the most beautiful thing of all. Your thoughts and your world are nigh to perfect. Yes, everything is planned perfectly here, but there’s still one place your work isn’t clear. What will you do with me to woo my heart? You have almost all of me save one part.

Jon: I’ve never shown my affection in ways you can see.

Deborah: So come now, my love and my dreamer, and embrace me. [He holds her and they kiss.] Your eyes are warmer than I though before. I now want nothing or need any more. I want you to hold me until time has died far away from the world and the tears I cried.

Jon: Holding you in my arms, I finally can see. There actually is a holy place just for me. No one loves the beauty in the poetry. They’re so shallow and so hateful all towards me. But at last I’ve found my solace and my resting place. I found someone who loves and adores my saddened face. I’m far from the wounds they’ve inflicted on me. At last I can healed and at peace be.

Deborah: I will kiss your wounds and attend them. I pray time is able to mend them. For if such wounds are left open for a little too long, they will change your nice poetry into a hateful song. When you think all else fails, you will turn and do what is wrong. What kind of woman would ever love that man? He is animal with blood on his hand. This is the one last thing I have to ponder about you. What of the blood on your hands that stain? What am I to do?

Jon: How can I make you see? I did this not for me. I do all that I do completely all for you.

Deborah: [Crying as she takes his hands in hers and looks at them.] Even though you did this all for me, your hands are still stained eternally. How do I wash away the blood?

Jon: There is only one cleansing flood able to make that stain go. It’s by your tears I’ll be white as snow.

Richard: [Coming out of the woods] Back, villain, or I’ll have your head. Back I say or you’ll soon be dead. I will kill you.

Jon: [Stopping the carriage and jumping down.] Look at the power of my magical world. It makes even this fool rhyme at least some of the time.

Deborah: Richard, what are you doing here?

Richard: I came at the villain’s invitation. I must admit I am impressed with your creation. Plugging yourself completely into a computer so that it takes absolute control of your mind is a brilliant idea. I must tell the world about this one.

Jon: I will not use my creation to further the absurdity. What I’ve made here is not for indecency.

Richard: In any case, I did not come to quarrel with you. I’m taking you back Deborah to this world of absurdity.

Jon: She has made her choice and I have her voice.

Richard: I know I am not as grand as this man you see before you. I will never accomplish half of what he’ll do, but, Deborah, I love you. Not for money, not for fame, not for even the beauty of your body do I love you. I love you because you’re kind and sweet and gentle and a loving human being. You have taken this poor man who was wrapped up in his wealth, and you have set him free. You showed me there is more to life than gathering the coins. Deborah, I love you more than anything else. I’ve dated a million girls and flirted and played about, but, Deborah, in all that I’ve done, I’ve never found one like you.

Jon: Flowered speech off a watered tongue all your words are a pile of dung.

Richard: Tell me how to win your love. Tell me now what I must do. Must I slay this villain here? I would do it happily, but not until you ask of me.

Deborah: Richard, you’re a kind and decent man, and I’d be a fool to lose you.

Jon: What is this you do? Are you actually considering going with this fool?

Deborah: But you I’ve loved deeper than any man. You’ve given me wings again.

Jon: Then come and let’s sore again. We’ll fly away from this place into the worlds we know not of. Come with me my prettiest dove.

Deborah: When it comes to you. I have only one reserve. Kindest sir, you’ve loved me for how you think I seem, but I am not this angel of your dream. I cannot wash that blasted stain of blood not even with the tears of my sad flood.

Jon: [Falls in the snow] The rhymes are leaving me. Help me. [He reaches out to her, but she does not take his hand.] So you’ll go back to the land I cannot stand. Come, what is there for you in that world but selfish, judgmental, and idle minds? How can you love that more than this? The only error I have made here is that it is too close to bliss. If you stay here, you may have whatever you like for this place is a slave to me, and I a slave to you. How can you live in that world where they’re so selfish and they only care for the here and now?

Deborah: [He kneels down to him] My love, and you are different how? Come, Richard, I will go with you.

Jon: Wait. If I can’t have you [He stand up] the world can’t have you either. Come my lovely creation your short life is done. [Richard and Deborah flee] Sky, fall down upon her brow. Wind, pick up snow and stop their seeing. Don’t let them go. Stop them from fleeing.

This is the end my tale is done. It had ended before it begun. In all God’s worlds there is no place where they love and welcome my face. There is no cure for this burning inside. There is no place of rest I can hide.

This is the end of my vision and my darkest dream. For a moment it was like heaven. Yes, so it seemed. Now it’s done and I’m lonely and sad again. My greatest work crumbles down before mine eyes. I wish to die here under my starry skies. Perhaps I will find some water there to quench this burning in the air. [The sky falls down on him.]

Scene 3:

[Richard and Deborah have just exited the dream world into the underground building.]

Deborah: [Examining Jon’s body still connected to the computers.] There is no pulse.

Richard: He died inside I’m afraid.

Ron: [Ron and Darrel enter the underground building] What has happened here?

Richard: There is your murderer, but I’m afraid you won’t get him alive.

Deborah: How did you know to come here?

Darrel: We bugged your phone and heard the invitation.

Ron: We’ll need you two to give us a full report of what happened.

Deborah: [She goes over to Jon.] And the now the times for rhymes are done. Who was this man who shone like the sun? He’s the only one who loved my heart, mind, and soul. I am sorry I could not stay with you there. Thank you for watching and your care. Now our time must end, I must go.


Senior Member
sorean... plays don't have 5 acts... there are one-acts... and full length plays have 2 acts... musicals have 3... but a 5-act play is really over the edge...

i think you need to study the basics of crafting a script for the theater... this isn't in play format or in the correct writing style... plus there may be serious staging problems with the carriage scenes...

i've written plays, so if you want help with this, you can send me a synopsis and i'll see if i can give you a hand getting it into proper form, at least...

love and hugs, maia
[email protected]


Senior Member
agreed with mammamia, but on a lighter side it has promise and it kept my attention all the way through!


mammamaia said:
sorean... plays don't have 5 acts... there are one-acts... and full length plays have 2 acts... musicals have 3... but a 5-act play is really over the edge...
Actually, I'd disagree. There isn't a set limit of acts for anything. I've been in a one-act musical and I'm right now rehearsing for a three act play that we're trying to do in one act. Five acts, although different, isn't 'against the rules'. I don't know how many people would go to a five act play, but if the writer thinks it is appropriate, I don't think anyone has the right to say no. We can disagree with the opinion, but we can't say it's not allowed.

It is a very long play and took me awhile to read, but I did enjoy it. you have things to work on, naturally, but it's a nice start.


Senior Member
well, i don't disagree, nyx... please note i did NOT say it's 'against the rules' or 'it's not allowed' but only that it's 'over the edge'... meaning it would be hard to get anyone to produce such a thing...

if you know of any modernday 5-acts that have been produced, i'll be happy to revise the 'plays don't have 5 acts' comment...


You did say 'plays don't have 5 acts', which I assumed meant, as one might imagine, that you think plays don't have 5 acts.

The first 5 act play that comes to mind is Macbeth, but you've asked for modern day 5 act plays. I must admit, having yet to reach the status of Theatre Guru, that I know of none. I never said I knew of any, only said that there is, or at the very least shouldn't be, a limit on the amount of acts in theatre.


I honestly have never written a play before and got the idea of five acts from Shakespeare's plays. So I am completely in the dark. Anyway, I have decided to turn it into a novel, and not because I don't know how to format plays. Thank you all for your comments anyway. They were most enlightening.