ACT I, scene ii, p11

15/01/2011 at 9:55 pm Leave a comment

[PAN suddenly stops playing his pipe]

RANDOLPH There was a time when I might deliver wrath at such a claim. The stories have been told. But I was younger then. Now I know there is as much to learn from disbelief as any truth you can name. So I will talk, not punish. That night we met I marked you as a man of learning. As you witnessed my transformation I confess, this notebook came into my possession somehow. I return it to you now.

KEN my notes – why?

RANDOLPH that I might glance upon the type of mind that inhabits this earth. Since last I woke, things have changed

KEN I have gone mad trying to find this.

RANDOLPH it carries your many varied thoughts. These things which put form to truths some dare not speak. A poet, yes? Your words carry our stories too, strangely fashioned into your own. You carry the sacred blessing, Slessor.

KEN I can’t deny what I do not see, nor can I believe.

RANDOLPH and you cannot see the wind except for how it cuts through life. Mostly over your head I might think! It matters not. Once I would have been angry with this unbeliever – but all I can see is me. Standing before you-

KEN Even images are just tools – let’s say you’re speaking the truth. That body is just an expression of an idea- a reflection to project. God cannot exist outside our minds.

RANDOLPH Yes, an idea, I am just that – one of many, brought into flesh. One that persists without your knowing nods. In any case, knowledge is a vastly overrated practice. Old as I am, what else should I know of this upside down earth? Eh? It is much to fathom this world can shift so far in – how long have I slept?

PAN about two thousand years, sire.

RANDOLPH is that a lot?

PAN It is if you’re awake.

RANDOLPH but dreams strip away in a moment what seems like years of learning. I care not for wisdom suffered through sophistry and reason. A toast to foolishness! Hah!

PAN not all of them are able to hear us in the ways we are used to.

RANDOLPH how does he hear us then? How do you hear us?

KEN I’m not sure what you mean.

RANDOLPH Pah! Meaning is the stuff of philosophers’ futile raving, eh? You, poet have the gift of vision – but furiously reason against the muse. Something you may already feel pressed against you. enclosing your mind, wet, sharp and howling like the wind. But still.

KEN what is it you want to know exactly?

RANDOLPH I do not suffer wants, mortal, I dream, it becomes my will. Your choice is yet to come.

CHORUS You hear us now as you have heard us many nights. Reaching. For what? To embrace the unknowable. The imagined. Security in a truth that fits the world you do see?

RANDOLPH You may see the gods as mythical, friend – and you would be right to worship reason as gospel and here I stand tall against such unanswerable gains of science, but these steel machines you ride have no such power as Olympus once regained. And I ask you this one thing- may your answer be truer than the soundest bell-

[The women of the CHORUS are undressing him in a comely manner. RANDOLPH increasingly becomes distracted by them]

KEN ask me what?

RANDOLPH Ah – where was I?

PAN The question, sire-

RANDOLPH Question?

KEN You were asking me a question-

RANDOLPH Well, let’s have it?

KEN Have what?

RANDOLPH Eh?

KEN I’m not following you.

RANDOLPH Good, good. For you must lead your own path.

KEN On that note- I’ll leave you to your riddles.

RANDOLPH it is so

KEN and thanks for my notebook. We can talk of this another day. Goodnight, Dulcie [exit]

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Entry filed under: Act I scene ii, New Work, Sydney THEATRE. Tags: , .

ACT I, scene ii, p10 ACT 1, scene ii, p12

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