Monologue Monday

Monologue Monday: Cactus and Karma by David Hansen

Hello everyone and welcome to a very special pandemic edition of Monologue Monday! Today we bring you two pieces of Quarantine Theatre.

These are monologues written by playwright David Hansen and performed by actors under quarantine. How claustrophobic is that?

Playwright Hansen and his gang of thespians have created something called The Short Play Project where they perform Hansen’s plays from the comfort of their very own quarantine.

CACTUS

The first play we’re profiling is about cactus sex. Kinda.

stock-photo-nature-garden-plant-cactus-lifestyle-design-succulent-give-flower-blooming-a1906ea3-ef74-441b-b328-5bc277077a7e
OH YEAH!!!!

It’s actually about vulnerability and is more of a metaphor. I know, I was kinda crushed, too.

This monologue can be used by any gender.

ONE

The guys, at work. They call me the cactus. Not “Cactus,” that would feel like a

nickname. “What’s up, Cactus?” That would be cute. No, that’s what they say behind

my back. [concerned, under the breath] “Don’t fuck up today, the Cactus is out for

blood.”[normal voice] Which is fine. I’m not there to have fun or be liked. I have work to

do and so do they, I don’t care if they are afraid to deal with me, they have to and that’s

it.

I do hate when I am referred to as prickly. That bothers me. But tough? Okay. Yes. Call

me tough. Is it because I am aggressive? No, it’s not. A cactus isn’t aggressive. A cactus

doesn’t leap out at you from a dark alley and murder you. That would be funny right.

[hard stare] No, you have to mess with it. Then you get hurt. That was a warning. To

you. I guess.

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Look, but don’t touch.

I am a seed that fell in a stony place, with no roots and little hope for survival. But when

the sun rose up I was not scorched, I said, “up yours, sun,” and grew anyway. That was

a biblical reference.

My toughness is my defense. My thorns are a defense. My just coming out and telling

you these things. That doesn’t mean I’m “letting you in.” I am stating the obvious so you

can’t tell me later that you didn’t know.

But I’d like to have sex with you, which means one of two things are going to happen.

You get close and I hurt you, or I let you cut me open to experience all the sweetness I

have hidden inside of me and then I die. I am no longer a cactus.

So ask yourself. Which outcome is more likely to happen?

“The guys at work” always seemed to be assholes, so I wouldn’t put much stock in what they say.

However, this is an interesting play about perception, vulnerability and human nature.

To download the monologue, just click here.

KARMA

The second play is about that age old concept of karma. The play is about a millipede.

millipede-phil-nosler
I like to pretend it’s this millipede.

We’re not really told why/how this millipede ended up at its karmic destination, but we don’t really need to be, either.

ONE

I live. I live. I eat. I live. I hunt. I eat. Eat what is in front of me. Navigate the surface. Always moving forward. Across the surface. Surface down. Surface across. Surface up. This is up, I am up, I live, I move, move unencumbered up. Vast plane of nothing, no food, no dark, but safe. Safe, I am, from beings, impossibly large beings, gigantic meatsticks, the great dangers. Also giant, but less so, the beasts who torture, crush, consume. Up surface they cannot go. But no food, I live. I eat, must eat. So, to the surface, with obstacles, surfaces smooth, surfaces nubbly, moving to catch, consume, sate, moving on. I was. I was. I recall. A meatstick once, once giant, a giant meatstick, with, I had, my, the way the world was, to me, mine, I understood. Understood. Understood me. A youth, young for meatstick, very old for me, turns of dark, numbering in the hundreds. A child? A child, curious, thoughts, ideas, catching, hunting, pinching, one like me, separating me, part by part, separated, causing chaos, call it pain. Ending life. I was. I was not. No longer child, now me. To learn. To truly understand.

That’s it. I’ve known several meatsticks in my life and many of them would be better off as millipedes.

You can download the play here.

To see all the plays of Hansen’s noble experiment, please check out the YouTube playlist.

Also, please check out Mr. Hensen’s website where he maintains a blog and other goodies. If you have access to the New Play Exchange, dude is on there, too.

This concludes our very special pandemic Monologue Monday. Everyone be safe. See you soon!