Act I, Scene I

Act I, Scene I

The setting:
The swamp at daybreak, gators loll the still dark waters. Trees stand tall upon arching roots. Birds flit and whirr in the bouncing branches.
A young man on a poke boat poles into view. He is dressed in cuffed blue jeans, an open button-up white Huck Finn shirt, and a fraying straw hat.

Timothy: Hello! Hello! Where are you? How can we combine ourselves and lose these lonely lonelies?

Silence. A gator surfaces, blinks, submerges, disturbing the water as it does.

Timothy: Hello?! Please!

From above a female form slips down from one gray, paper-barked branch to another. The long, elliptical, sharp-tipped, shiny- and waxy-green leaves shake in the thick hot air.

Susan: Here! Here I stand! Here I am! Here I love you bright and strong like the sun sweeps through the shadows, overturning the darkness, melting the cold hollows, healing the desperate breaks.

Timothy: Susan! Susan! Susan!

Susan: It is me Timothy, Susan. I am the woman that fits your longings and compliments your bag of yeses and no’s. I am the woman who loves you and always will. I have come because I heard your voice shaking the treetops of the swamp.

Timothy: Susan!

Susan: Speak to me. Tell me, tell me how to touch you, where to know you, when we can begin, where we will go, what we we will become.

Timothy: I’ve wandered the bayous. I’ve pushed a worn-wood pole against a slip-mud floor day and night, with the sunlight and moonlight splatter-scattered through the thick swampland canopy. I’ve looked so long and hard for you!

Susan: Bring your boat round. I want to dangle from this paper-barked tree and ease my lithe womanhood into your pokey, wobbly swampboat. I want to hold your body and join with it. I want to share your joys and sorrows, to bear your children and build with you a home.

Timothy: A home! A wooden shack, raised on wooden stilts above the cool still water! With our own room where we find our own satisfaction.

Susan: Yes, a place we can call our own, where we can share ourselves with one another and be happy.

Timothy brings the skiff underneath the tree. Susan hangs from the limp and effortlessly places herself into the plank front seat.

Timothy: Your beauty overpowers me, but in the same breath it emboldens me so! The private flame mounts in me and I know that I must know your soft skin and big sweet eyes, that I must enter into a covenant with you that lasts a lifetime, that uses up every last bit of flesh and blush.

Susan: Pole us to your little one room white-washed platform home.

Timothy: Is it time? Time for us to begin?

Susan: I’m afraid so. It is scary, but it must begin at some point, otherwise we can never be together.

Timothy: I love you, Susan.

Susan: I love you, Timothy, and I am ready to be your wife.

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