Monday, 29 February 2016

Kaned Again

Sarah died for your sins.

Enter Sarah and Gareth. They are shackled together. Naked, they recall the Rider Waite Tarot card of The Devil.

Sarah: Do you trust me? 

Gareth: Yes. But why? 

Sarah: You trust me because I write so well. You trust me because you recognise the things I describe. 

Gareth: I don’t recognise this place. 

Sarah: It’s a university. 

Gareth: It looks like a concentration camp. 

Sarah: What’s the difference?

Black out. Loud electronic music. Lights up, The Red Room. Grace is having sex with her brother, while a retarded boy, in a dress, swings from the ceiling on a pair of tights. 

Black out. Loud electronic music. Lights up. Sarah and Gareth again.

Gareth: An hour and a half’s a bit long for this. 

Sarah: Too weak to take it? 

Gareth: It’s a good idea to read out the stage directions rather to act them. It saves the actors having to actually mutilate themselves. 

Sarah: Why do you insist on considering Cleansed as a play? My pain transcends theatre. I am on the point of transforming the script into something like your beloved Live Art. 

Gareth: You were consciously copying other authors. Edward Bond. Beckett. You even used Shakespeare to defend your stage directions. Just because you were clinically depressed didn’t mean that you weren’t literary. 

Sarah: So how many stars are you going to give me?

Black out. Loud electronic music. Lights up, The White Room. Tinker and a gay male couple.

Tinker: I’m a doctor. I’m not a doctor. I hate women. 

Gay Male Couple: We understand that sado-masochism is not a matter of whips and chains, but the deeper torments of the mind. One of us ends up dead, the other loses hands, feet and tongue. 

Tinker: We are all symbols of internal and external expression. I might be God.

Black out. Sarah and Gareth.

Gareth: Do you remember when we met at The Scala cinema, In King’s Cross? 

Sarah: They were showing Pasolini’s Salo. I was the only woman in the audience. 

Gareth: And I was the only man not wearing a mackintosh and furtively touching himself. 

Sarah: You were a boy. 

Gareth: You could have stayed the next morning. 

Sarah: How would it have been different? 

Gareth: You might still be here. 

Sarah: Because I needed you? And I’d be writing adaptations of classics for the NTS. 


Sarah: Would you have died for me? 

Gareth: I would have said that I would. 

Sarah: From the man who lasted nine seconds when he was waterboarded.

Black out. Lights up. The chocolate room. The retarded boy is eating an entire box of chocolates to a loud, swirling soundtrack.


Black out. Lights up. Gareth and Sarah.

Gareth: Is it true that Tinker was named after a critic from The Daily Mail? 

Sarah: These days, I’d write a witty acoustic song about it and put it on YouTube. 

Gareth: We don’t do sincerity in the twenty-first century. 

Sarah: That’s why you don’t have any good script-writers. 

Gareth: You know, they were just boys. You needed an older lover, et c. 

Sarah: I needed God. And He’s dead. 

Gareth: This is your worst play. 

Sarah: And so my most honest. 

Gareth: It needs to be under-played.

Black out. Lights up. The Yellow room. Sounds of amputation, and screams. Grace is naked, with tits and a cock.

Grace: (sings) All you love is need. All you love is need. Need, need: need is all you love.

Black out. Lights up. Gareth and Sarah.

Sarah: It’s not as bad as my version of Hippolytus

Gareth: You hadn’t bothered to read the original. 

Sarah: So what? I just fancied having a Greek hero wanking into a sock. You’d prefer a reverential version? 

Gareth: I love everything you wrote, Sarah. 

Sarah: Does that mean you are going to rape me?

Black out. Pause. Lights up. The stage is scattered with Tinker’s mad eyes, melted chocolate, piss, flames, feet, hands, half a tongue, blood which smells of tomato puree, the dead bodies of the cast. Gareth and Sarah again.

Gareth: They really went for it. 

Sarah: I hate actors. 

Gareth: Why else would you have written Cleansed

Sarah: I do to actors what God did to me. 

Gareth: Force them through a script that they can’t hope to escape? 

Sarah: If God existed, that is what He did. But God is dead. 

Gareth: You killed yourself because you had such a strong identification with God? 

Sarah: I killed myself because... have you looked out the window lately? 

Gareth: You killed yourself because you picked up a copy of Hello! Magazine in the STD waiting room? 

Sarah: I saw what was coming. God is dead, and Jordan is sitting in His throne. If God is Love, then Love is dead. In the gap, there is need. Society weeds out the capable. Society destroys God.

Gareth: Sarah? It’s Easter.

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