Sunday Morning Classics

March 7, 2024

LYNN gets ready to say bye to BETHANY and WESLEY just before they leave. LYNN enters BETHANY’s bedroom, which is full of boxes, and no one else is there. 

A laugh is heard off stage, and 8-year-old BETHANY enters and runs across the stage, being chased by younger WESLEY. They run offstage playfully, and 13-year-old BETHANY runs across the stage again, this time chased by university-aged WESLEY.

LYNN considers following them but hesitates.

An even older WESLEY enters.

WESLEY: Hey, ma’. Wanna help me with these boxes?

LYNN: Where’s your sister? 

WESLEY: Already in the truck waiting to leave.

LYNN: Get her in here! She hasn’t even said bye yet! 

WESLEY: Plus, what are we, her box-carrying slaves? I’ll get her. 

WESLEY hoists up a box and heads out, calling at BETHANY to come inside.

When he returns, 18-year-old BETHANY is with him.

LYNN: Bethany! You weren’t even going to say bye?

BETHANY: How many goodbyes do you need?

WESLEY: Lots. Her need for goodbyes is insatiable. Trust me, she was like this with me every year, too.

BETHANY: She feeds off goodbyes. They are her only sustenance.

LYNN: Haven’t you said goodbye to your bedroom yet?

BETHANY: Now, that’s taking things a bit extreme, don’tcha think?

WESLEY: Beth, right now, give this wall a kiss and tell it you love it.

LYNN: Come on, guys. I know when you’re making fun of me!

WESLEY: Don’t sweat it, Beth. It’s a typical mom thing to get all sentimental like this.

LYNN: Exactly! It’s innate to us moms. 

WESLEY (speaking loudly with a sarcastically obvious tone): Hmmmm! Gee! Sure are a lot of boxes in here! I wonder how they’ll get from here to the truck! If only I had some helpers to move these boxes with me!

BETHANY: Subtle, Wesley. Here, I got this. Mom, grab that over there. Wes, you good with all three of those?

LYNN: Looks heavy!

WESLEY: No, see, it’s all about where you put the fulcrum. The force of the effort multiplied by the distance of the effort from the fulcrum is equal to the force of resistance multiplied by the distance of the resistance from the fulcrum. See, it’s quite easy. f  = ma. In Newton’s laws of motion―

BETHANY: Please stop.

LYNN: I’m sorry I asked.

WESLEY: Hey! If I gotta’ put up with Beth’s music terminology all the time, you guys can handle a little bit of physics!

BETHANY: Trust me, Wesley, no I most certainly cannot.

WESLEY shakes his head and exits the bedroom with the boxes. BETHANY and LYNN follow with boxes in hand as well.

They enter again to retrieve more boxes. Again, all three exit carrying boxes. A final time, BETHANY enters the bedroom with LYNN for the final trip. BETHANY bends down to pick up a box but LYNN stops her.

LYNN: Wait, not just yet. 

BETHANY: Whaddya’ need, Mom? Another goodbye? 

LYNN: No, I wanted to give this to you. 

BETHANY: What is it?

LYNN: Here, open your hand.

LYNN places the gift in BETHANY’S palm.

BETHANY: The tickets?

LYNN: Yep.

BETHANY: You held on to these for ten years?

LYNN: Sure did.

BETHANY: They look so worn out.

LYNN: I know, but even so, they’re still so valuable. 

BETHANY: I think I know what you mean by that.

LYNN: Yeah?

BETHANY: You mean, like, they’re not valuable in the way where they could be used to go to a concert nowadays, or in the way where they could be sold for money.

LYNN: Exactly.

BETHANY: They’re valuable because they’ve seen so many things. They’ve been through so much. The fire, the destruction of the hall, Wesley graduating high school and university, me graduating high school, the hall being rebuilt. . . 

LYNN: They’ve been here the entire time.

BETHANY: And. . . so the corners are a little folded. . . so they’re a little crinkled. . . it just shows what they’ve been through. 

LYNN: Mmhhmm.

BETHANY: I can’t believe you held on to these for ten years! Why, mom?

LYNN: To remind myself that everything and everyone has value in some way. Even if their corners are folded, or they get bad grades, or, even if they stutter. . . 

BETHANY: Aw, mom. Don’t get all deep on me.

LYNN: But now, I’ve been reminded enough that it’s ingrained permanently into my mind. So, now I’ll pass them on to you, so you can always be reminded as well.

BETHANY: Mom, I don’t think I should take these.

LYNN (shocked): But why?

BETHANY: What I mean is, I don’t think I should take both. 

LYNN: Why wouldn’t you?

BETHANY: Because I think one is meant to stay here with you.

LYNN: Oh, Bethany. . .

BETHANY: Here, Mom. You’ll have one and I’ll have one. Then we won’t ever be too far apart, will we?

LYNN: I guess not.

A car horn honks.

BETHANY: We’d better get these last boxes loaded up. 

LYNN: Sounds like your brother is getting a bit impatient.

BETHANY: It’s innate to all brothers. Bye, wall, I love you!

BETHANY and LYNN exit the now empty room. There are sounds of a truck pulling out of the driveway and leaving. LYNN then re-enters the bedroom, alone.

Radio static is heard, and then Classical Hour comes on.

MALE RADIO HOST: Trish, what’s your favorite thing about George Gershwin? Besides everything!

TRISH: My favorite thing about George Gershwin is his boldness. The way he blended classical music with jazz music so seamlessly is really something to be praised. He was his own kind. He stood out. And because of that, we remember him all these years later. We remember him for his jazz standards, and we remember him for his operas.

MALE RADIO HOST: Well said.

TRISH: But most of all, we remember him for his damn good music. Music like that never dies, even if the composer does.

When the next piece of music comes on, LYNN tries her hand at conducting. She isn’t very good at it and is mostly just waving her arms up and down. 8 year old BETHANY joins her.

(YOUNG)BETHANY: No, Mom, like this.

BETHANY shows LYNN how to conduct the piece.

BETHANY: There, you’re getting it. Just keep your ictus steady.

LYNN: What on earth is an ictus?

BETHANY: It’s the point that denotes the beat. See? All motion comes back to the same point. 

LYNN: You’re speaking like you’re all grown up.

BETHANY: Am I really?

LYNN: Well, you never were a kid like all the others were. You were a different kid.

BETHANY frowns and looks at LYNN confused.

LYNN: I mean that in a good way. 

A knock at the door startles LYNN. YOUNG BETHANY exits.

LYNN (hesitantly): Come in?

Gillian Corsiatto hails from Alberta, Canada, right between two major cities: Calgary and Edmonton. She has been a lifelong writer, and her first book Duck Light was published in 2021. Since then, she has been motivated to keep at her writing and further it into an established career, even branching out into writing for the theatre. Currently, a sequel to Duck Light is underway, but she still pumps out scripts and short stories whenever an idea creeps into her mind. You can find her mostly at her writing desk, probably with a cat in her lap, and maybe even spinning a fidget spinner. She thinks those are still cool.

 

Featured image by Brandable Box.

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