View Poll Results: Which Beckett book would you like to read?

10. You may not vote on this poll
  • Murphy

    0 0%
  • Watt

    0 0%
  • Molloy

    0 0%
  • Malone Dies

    0 0%
  • The Unnamable

    2 20.00%
  • Molly, Malone Dies and The Unnamable Trilogy

    3 30.00%
  • Waiting for Godot

    4 40.00%
  • Endgame

    1 10.00%
  • Happy Days

    0 0%
  • Krapp's Last Tape

    0 0%
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Thread: Remembering Samuel Beckett

  1. #1
    PiŤce de Rťsistance Scheherazade's Avatar
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    Sep 2004
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    Remembering Samuel Beckett

    This year, we are celebrating the centenary of Samuel Beckett's birth.
    If you would like to join us by reading one of his book,
    please vote by May 15th.




    Malone Dies

    The Unnamable

    Moloy, Malone Dies and The Unnamable Trilogy

    Waiting for Godot (play)

    Endgame (play)

    Happy Days (play)

    Krapp's Last Tape (play)

    Book Club Procedures
    Last edited by Scheherazade; 05-06-2006 at 07:01 PM.
    "It is not that I am mad; it is only that my head is different from yours.Ē

  2. #2
    I read Endgame just last week. Right now I can only really say it was weird. I'm slowly trying to digest the deeper significance of the trashcan parents though.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by chmpman
    I'm slowly trying to digest the deeper significance of the trashcan parents though.
    Aren't we all?

  4. #4
    Metamorphosing Pensive's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    I will like to try Samuel! I wonder if he is any good.... *thinking*
    I sang of leaves, of leaves of gold, and leaves of gold there grew.

  5. #5
    Super papayahed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    I've never read Beckett, this will be interesting.
    Do, or do not. There is no try. - Yoda

  6. #6
    A few snippets from each to make the choice easier:


    ďWith regard to the disposal of these my body, mind and soul, I desire that they be burnt and placed in a paper bag and brought to the Abbey Theatre, Lr. Abbey Street, Dublin, and without further pause into what the great and good Lord Chesterfield calls the necessary house, where their happiest hours have been spent, on the right as one goes down into the pit, and I desire that the chain be there pulled upon them, if possible during the performance of a piece, the whole to be executed without ceremony or show of grief.Ē

    The novel opens with:

    ďThe sun shone, having no alternative, on the nothing new. Murphy sat out of it, as though he were free, in a mew in West Brompton. Here for what might have been six months he had eaten, drunk, slept, and put his clothes on and off, in a medium-sized cage of north-western aspect commanding an unbroken view of medium-sized cages of south-eastern aspect. Soon he would have to make other arrangements, for the mew had been condemned. Soon he would have to buckle to and start eating, drinking, sleeping and putting his clothes on and off, in quite alien surroundings.Ē


    Watt is less of a distinct personality than Murphy, which makes the novel more difficult to read:

    ďBut what was this pursuit of meaning, in this indifference to meaning? And to what did it tend? These are delicate questions. For when Watt at last spoke of this time, it was a time long past, and of which his recollections were, in a sense, perhaps less clear than he would have wished, though too clear for his liking, in another. Add to this the notorious difficulty of recapturing, at will, modes of feeling peculiar to a certain time, and to a certain place, and perhaps also to a certain state of the health, when the time is past, and the place left, and the body struggling with quite a new situation. Add to this the obscurity of Wattís communications, the rapidity of his utterance and the eccentricities of his syntax, as elsewhere recorded. Add to this the material conditions in which these communications were made. Add to this the scant aptitude to receive of him to whom they were proposed. Add to this the scant aptitude to give of him to whom they were committed. And some idea will perhaps be obtained of the difficulties experienced in formulating, not only such matters as those here in question, but the entire body of Wattís experience, from the moment of his entering Mr Knottís establishment to the moment of his leaving.Ē

  7. #7

    I am in my motherís room. Itís I who live there now. I donít know how I got there. Perhaps in an ambulance, certainly a vehicle of some kind. I was helped. Iíd never have got there alone. Thereís this man who comes every week. Perhaps I got here thanks to him. He says not. He gives me money and takes away the pages. So many pages, so much money. Yes, I work now, a little like I used to, except that I donít know how to work any more. That doesnít matter apparently. What Iíd like now is to speak of the things that are left, say my goodbyes, finish dying. They donít want that. Yes, there is more than one of them, apparently. But itís always the same one that comes. Youíll do that later, he says. Good. The truth is I havenít much will left. When he comes for the fresh pages he brings back the previous weekís. They are marked with signs I donít understand. Anyway, I donít read them. When Iíve done nothing he gives me nothing, he scolds me. Yet I donít work for money. For what then? I donít know. The truth is I donít know much. For example, my motherís death. Was she already dead when I came? Or did she only die later? I mean enough to bury. I donít know. Perhaps they havenít buried her yet. In any case, I have her room. I sleep in her bed. I piss and **** in her pot. I have taken her place. I must resemble her more and more. All I need now is a son. Perhaps I have one somewhere. But I think not.

    Malone Dies:

    Yes I shall be natural at last, I shall suffer more, then less, without drawing any conclusions, I shall pay less heed to myself, I shall be neither hot nor cold any more, I shall be tepid, I shall die tepid, without enthusiasm. I shall not watch myself die, that would spoil everything. Have I watched myself live? Have I ever complained? Then why rejoice now? I am content, necessarily, but not to the point of clapping my hands. I was always content, knowing I would be repaid. There he is now, my old debtor. Shall I then fall on his neck? I shall not answer any more questions. I shall even try not to ask myself any more. While waiting I shall tell myself stories, if I can. They will not be the same kind of stories as hitherto, that is all. They will be neither beautiful nor ugly, they will be calm, there will be no ugliness or beauty or fever in them any more, they will be almost lifeless, like the teller. What was that I said? It does not matter. I look forward to their giving me great satisfaction, some satisfaction. I am satisfied, there, I have enough, I am repaid, I need nothing more. Let me say before I go any further that I forgive nobody. I wish them all an atrocious life and then the fires and ice of hell and in the execrable generations to come an honoured name. Enough for this evening.

  8. #8
    The Unnamable:

    the words that remain, try what, I donít know, Iíve forgotten, it doesnít matter, I never knew, to have them carry me into my story, the words that remain, my old story, which Iíve forgotten) far from here, through the noise, through the door, into the silence, that must be it, itís too late, perhaps itís too late, perhaps they have, how would I know, in the silence you donít know, perhaps itís the door, perhaps Iím at the door, that would surprise me, perhaps itís I, perhaps somewhere or other it was I, I can depart, all this time Iíve journeyed without knowing it, itís I now at the door, what door, whatís a door doing here, itís the last words, the true last, or itís the murmurs, the murmurs are coming, I know that well, no, not even that, you talk of murmurs, distant cries, as long as you can talk, you talk of them before and you talk of them after, more lies, it will be the silence, the one that doesnít last, spent listening, spent waiting, for it to be broken, for the voice to break it, perhaps thereís no other, I donít know, itís not worth having, thatís all I know, itís not I, thatís all I know, itís not mine, itís the only one I ever had, thatís a lie, I must have had the other, the one that lasts, but it didnít last, I donít understand, that is to say it did, it still lasts, Iím still in it, I left myself behind in it, Iím waiting for me there, no, there you donít wait, you donít listen, I donít know, perhaps itís a dream, all a dream, that would surprise me, Iíll wake, in the silence, and never sleep again, it will be I, or dream, dream again, dream of a silence, a dream silence, full of murmurs, I donít know, thatís all words, never wake, all words, thereís nothing else, you must go on, thatís all I know, theyíre going to stop, I know that well, I can feel it, theyíre going to abandon me, it will be the silence, for a moment, a good few moments, or it will be mine, the lasting one, that didnít last, that still lasts, it will be I, you must go on, I canít go on, you must go on, Iíll go on, you must say words, as long as there are any, until they find me, until they say me, strange pain, strange sin, you must go on, perhaps itís done already, perhaps they have said me already, perhaps they have carried me to the threshold of my story, before the door that opens on my story, that would surprise me, if it opens, it will be I, it will be the silence, where I am, I donít know, Iíll never know, in the silence you donít know, you must go on, I canít go on, Iíll go on.

  9. #9
    I like Beckett. I was once 'Vladimir' in a production of 'Waiting for Godot'. Seems like a lifetime ago! Can't read anything but work related at moment though. Enjoy all.

  10. #10
    Waiting For Godot:

    VLADIMIR: Before you go tell him to sing.
    POZZO: Who?
    VLADIMIR: Lucky.
    POZZO: To sing?
    VLADIMIR: Yes. Or to think. Or to recite.
    POZZO: But he is dumb.
    VLADIMIR: Dumb!
    POZZO: Dumb. He can't even groan.
    VLADIMIR: Dumb! Since when?
    POZZO: (suddenly furious.) Have you not done tormenting me with your accursed time! It's abominable! When! When! One day, is that not enough for you, one day he went dumb, one day I went blind, one day we'll go deaf, one day we were born, one day we shall die, the same day, the same second, is that not enough for you? (Calmer.) They give birth astride of a grave, the light gleams an instant, then it's night once more. (He jerks the rope.) On!

    Exeunt Pozzo and Lucky. Vladimir follows them to the edge of the stage, looks after them. The noise of falling, reinforced by mimic of Vladimir, announces that they are down again. Silence. Vladimir goes towards Estragon, contemplates him a moment, then shakes him awake.

    ESTRAGON: (wild gestures, incoherent words. Finally.) Why will you never let me sleep?
    VLADIMIR: I felt lonely.
    ESTRAGON: I was dreaming I was happy.
    VLADIMIR: That passed the time.
    ESTRAGON: I was dreaming tható
    VLADIMIR: (violently). Don't tell me! (Silence.) I wonder is he really blind.
    ESTRAGON: Blind? Who?
    VLADIMIR: Pozzo.
    ESTRAGON: Blind?
    VLADIMIR: He told us he was blind.
    ESTRAGON: Well what about it?
    VLADIMIR: It seemed to me he saw us.
    ESTRAGON: You dreamt it. (Pause.) Let's go. We can't. Ah! (Pause.) Are you sure it wasn't him?
    VLADIMIR: Who?
    ESTRAGON: Godot.
    VLADIMIR: But who?
    ESTRAGON: Pozzo.
    VLADIMIR: Not at all! (Less sure.) Not at all! (Still less sure.) Not at all!
    ESTRAGON: I suppose I might as well get up. (He gets up painfully.) Ow! Didi!
    VLADIMIR: I don't know what to think any more.
    ESTRAGON: My feet! (He sits down again and tries to take off his boots.) Help me!
    VLADIMIR: Was I sleeping, while the others suffered? Am I sleeping now? Tomorrow, when I wake, or think I do, what shall I say of today? That with Estragon my friend, at this place, until the fall of night, I waited for Godot? That Pozzo passed, with his carrier, and that he spoke to us? Probably. But in all that what truth will there be? (Estragon, having struggled with his boots in vain, is dozing off again. Vladimir looks at him.) He'll know nothing. He'll tell me about the blows he received and I'll give him a carrot. (Pause.) Astride of a grave and a difficult birth. Down in the hole, lingeringly, the grave digger puts on the forceps. We have time to grow old. The air is full of our cries. (He listens.) But habit is a great deadener. (He looks again at Estragon.) At me too someone is looking, of me too someone is saying, He is sleeping, he knows nothing, let him sleep on. (Pause.) I can't go on! (Pause.) What have I said?

  11. #11

    HAMM: It's the end, Clov, we've come to the end. I don't need you any more.
    CLOV: Lucky for you.
    (He goes towards door.)
    HAMM: Leave me the gaff.
    (Clov gives him the gaff, goes towards door, halts, looks at alarm-clock, takes it down, looks round for a better place to put it, goes to bins, puts it on lid of Nagg's bin. Pause.)
    CLOV: I'll leave you.
    (He goes towards door.)
    HAMM: Before you go...
    (Clov halts near door.)
    ...say something.
    CLOV: There is nothing to say.
    HAMM: A few words... to ponder... in my heart.
    CLOV: Your heart!
    HAMM: Yes.
    (Pause. Forcibly.)
    With the rest, in the end, the shadows, the murmurs, all the trouble, to end up with.
    Clov... He never spoke to me. Then, in the end, before he went, without my having asked him, he spoke to me. He said...
    CLOV (despairingly): Ah...!
    HAMM: Something... from your heart.
    CLOV: My heart!
    HAMM: A few words... from your heart.
    CLOV (fixed gaze, tonelessly, towards auditorium): They said to me, That's love, yes, yes, not a doubt, now you see howó
    HAMM: Articulate!
    CLOV (as before): How easy it is. They said to me, That's friendship, yes, yes, no question, you've found it. They said to me, Here's the place, stop, raise your head and look at all that beauty. That order! They said to me, Come now, you're not a brute beast, think upon these things and you'll see how all becomes clear. And simple! They said to me, What skilled attention they get, all these dying of their wounds.
    HAMM: Enough!
    CLOV (as before): I say to myselfó sometimes, Clov, you must learn to suffer better than that if you want them to weary of punishing youó one day. I say to myselfósometimes, Clov, you must be better than that if you want them to let you goóone day. But I feel too old, and too far, to form new habits. Good, it'll never end, I'll never go.
    Then one day, suddenly, it ends, it changes, I don't understand, it dies, or it's me, I don't understand that either. I ask the words that remainó sleeping, waking, morning, evening. They have nothing to say.
    I open the door of the cell and go. I am so bowed I only see my feet, if I open my eyes, and between my legs a little trail of black dust. I say to myself that the earth is extinguished, though I never saw it lit.
    It's easy going.
    When I fall I'll weep for happiness.
    (Pause. He goes towards door.)
    HAMM: Clov!
    (Clov halts, without turning.)
    (Clov moves on.)
    (Clov halts, without turning.)
    CLOV: This is what we call making an exit.
    HAMM: I'm obliged to you, Clov. For your services.
    CLOV (turning sharply): Ah pardon, it's I am obliged to you.
    HAMM: It's we are obliged to each other.
    (Pause. Clov goes towards door.)
    One thing more.
    (Clov halts.)
    A last favor.
    (Exit Clov.)
    Cover me with the sheet.
    (Long pause.)
    No? Good.
    Me to play.
    (Pause. Wearily.)
    Old endgame lost of old, play and lose and have done with losing.
    (Pause. More animated.)
    Let me see.
    Ah yes!
    (He tries to move the chair, using the gaff as before. Enter Clov, dressed for the road. Panama hat, tweed coat, raincoat over his arm, umbrella, bag. He halts by the door and stands there, impassive and motionless, his eyes fixed on Hamm, till the end.)
    Hamm gives up:
    (He throws away the gaff, makes to throw away the dog, thinks better of it.)
    Take it easy.
    And now?
    Raise hat.
    (He raises his toque.)
    Peace to our... arses.
    And put on again.
    (He puts on his toque.)
    (Pause. He takes off his glasses.)
    (He takes out his handkerchief and, without unfolding it, wipes his glasses.)
    And put on again.
    (He puts on his glasses, puts back the handkerchief in his pocket.)
    We're coming. A few more squirms like that and I'll call.
    A little poetry.
    You prayedó
    (Pause. He corrects himself.)
    You CRIED for night; it comesó
    (Pause. He corrects himself.)
    It FALLS: now cry in darkness.
    (He repeats, chanting.)
    You cried for night; it falls: now cry in darkness.
    Nicely put, that.
    And now?
    Moments for nothing, now as always, time was never and time is over, reckoning closed and story ended.
    (Pause. Narrative tone.)
    If he could have his child with him...
    It was the moment I was waiting for.
    You don't want to abandon him? You want him to bloom while you are withering? Be there to solace your last million last moments?
    He doesn't realize, all he knows is hunger, and cold, and death to crown it all. But you! You ought to know what the earth is like, nowadays. Oh I put him before his responsibilities!
    (Pause. Normal tone.)
    Well, there we are, there I am, that's enough.
    (He raises the whistle to his lips, hesitates, drops it. Pause.)
    Yes, truly!
    (He whistles. Pause. Louder. Pause.)
    (Pause. Louder.)
    We're coming.
    And to end up with?
    (He throws away the dog. He tears the whistle from his neck.)
    With my compliments.
    (He throws the whistle towards the auditorium. Pause. He sniffs. Soft.)
    (Long pause.)
    No? Good.
    (He takes out the handkerchief.)
    Since that's the way we're playing it...
    (he unfolds handkerchief)
    ...let's play it that way...
    (he unfolds)
    ...and speak no more about it...
    (he finishes unfolding)
    ...speak no more.
    (He holds handkerchief spread out before him.)
    Old stancher!
    You... remain.
    (Pause. He covers his face with handkerchief, lowers his arms to armrests, remains motionless.)
    (Brief tableau.)


  12. #12
    Happy Days:

    Act One
    Expanse of scorched grass rising centre to low mound. Gentle slopes down to front and either side of stage. Back an abrupter fall to stage level. Maximum of simplicity and symmetry.
    Blazing light.
    Very pompier trompe-l'oeil hackcloth to represent unbroken plain and sky receding to meet in far distance.
    Imbedded up to above her waist in exact centre of mound, WINNIE. About fifty, well preserved, blond for preference, plump, arms and shoulders hare, low bodice, big bosom, pearl necklet. She is discovered sleeping, her arms on the ground before her, her head on her arms. Beside her on ground to her left a capacious black bag, shopping variety, and to her right a collapsible collapsed parasol, beak of handle emerging from sheath.
    To her right and rear, lying asleep on ground, hidden by mound, WILLIE.
    Long pause. A hell rings piercingly, say ten seconds, stops. She does not move. Pause. Bell more piercingly, say five seconds. She wakes. Bell stops. She raises her head, gazes front. Long pause. She straightens up, lays her hands flat on ground, throws back her head and gazes at zenith. Long pause.
    WINNIE (gazing at zenith). Another heavenly day. (Pause. Head back level, eyes front, pause. She clasps hands to breast, closes eyes. Lips move in inaudible prayer, say ten seconds. Lips still. Hands remain clasped. Low.) For Jesus Christ sake Amen. (Eyes open, hands unclasp, return to mound. Pause. She clasps hands to breast again, closes eyes, lips move again in inaudible addendum, say five seconds. Low.) World without end Amen. (Eyes open, hands unclasp, return to mound. Pause.) Begin, Winnie. (Pause.) Begin your day, Winnie. (Pause. She turns to bag, rummages in it without moving it from its place, brings out toothbrush, rummages again, brings out flat tube of toothpaste, turns back front, unscrews cap of tube, lays cap on ground, squeezes with difficulty small blob of paste on brush, holds tube in one hand and brushes teeth with other. She turns modestly aside and back to her right to spit out behind mound. In this position her eyes rest on WILLIE. She spits out. She cranes a little further back and down. Loud.) Hoo-oo! (Pause. Louder.) Hoo-oo! (Pause. Tender smile as she turns back front, lays down brush.) Poor Willie -- (examines tube, smile off) -- running out -- (looks for cap) -- ah well -- (finds cap) -- can't be helped -- (screws on cap) -- just one of those old things -- (lays down tube) -- another of those old things -- (turns towards bag) -- just can't be cured -- (rummages in bag) -- cannot be cured -- (brings out small mirror, turns back front) -- ah yes -- (inspects teeth in mirror) -poor dear Willie -- (testing upper front teeth with thumb, indistinctly) -- good Lord! -- (pulling back upper lip to inspect gums, do.) -- good God! -- (pulling back corner of mouth, mouth open, do.) -- ah well -- (other corner, do.) -- no worse -- (abandons inspection, normal speech) -- no better, no worse -- (lays down mirror) -- no change -- (wipes fingers on grass) -- no pain -- (looks for toothbrush) -hardly any -- (takes up toothbrush) -- great thing that -- (examines handle of brush) -nothing like it -- (examines handle, reads) -pure . . . what? -- (pause) -- what? -- (lays down brush) -- ah yes -- (turns towards bag) -- poor Willie -- (rummages in bag) -- no zest -- (rummages) -- for anything -- (brings out spectacles in case) -- no interest -- (turns back front) -- in life -- (takes spectacles from case) -- poor dear Willie -- (lays down case) -- sleep for ever -- (opens spectacles) -- marvellous gift -- (puts on spectacles) -- nothing to touch it -(looks for toothbrush) -- in my opinion -(takes up toothbrush) -- always said so -(examines handle of brush) -- wish I had it -- (examines handle, reads) -- genuine . . . pure . . . what? -- (lays down brush) -- blind next -- (takes off spectacles) -- ah well -- (lays down spectacles) -- seen enough -- (feels in bodice for handkerchief) -- I suppose -- (takes out folded handkerchief) -- by now -- (shakes out handkerchief) -- what are those wonderful lines -- (wipes one eye) -- woe woe is me -(wipes the other) -- to see what I see -- (looks for spectacles) -- ah yes -- (takes up spectacles) -- wouldn't miss it -- (starts polishing spectacles, breathing on lenses) -- or would I? -- (polishes) -- holy light -- (polishes) -- bob up out of dark -- (polishes) -- blaze of hellish light. (Stops polishing, raises face to sky, pause, head back level, resumes polishing, stops polishing, cranes back to her right and down.) Hoo-oo! (Pause. Tender smile as she turns back front and resumes polishing. Smile off.) Marvellous gift -- (stops polishing, lays down spectacles) -- wish I had it -- (folds handkerchief) -- ah well -- (puts handkerchief back in bodice) -- can't complain -- (looks for spectacles) -- no no -- (takes up spectacles) -mustn't complain -- (holds up spectacles, looks through lens) -- so much to be thankful for -(looks through other lens) -- no pain -- (puts on spectacles) -- hardly any -- (looks for toothbrush) -- wonderful thing that -- (takes up toothbrush) -- nothing like it -- (examines handle of brush) -- slight headache sometimes -- (examines handle, reads) -- guaranteed . . . genuine . . . pure . . . what? -- (looks closer) -genuine pure . . . -- (takes handkerchief from bodice) -- ah yes -- (shakes out handkerchief) -- occasional mild migraine -- (starts wiping handle of brush -- it comes -- (wipes) -- then goes -- (wiping mechanically) -- ah yes -(wiping) -- many mercies -- (wiping) -- great mercies -- (stops wiping, fixed lost gaze, brokenly) -- prayers perhaps not for naught -(pause, do.) -- first thing -- (pause, do.) -last thing -- (head down, resumes wiping, stops wiping, head up, calmed, wipes eyes, folds handkerchief, puts it back in bodice, examines handle of brush, reads) -- fully guaranteed . . . genuine pure . . . -- (looks closer) -- genuine pure . . . (Takes off spectacles, lays them and brush down, gazes before her.) Old things. (Pause.) Old eyes. (Long pause.) On, Winnie. (She casts about her, sees parasol, considers it at length, takes it up and develops from sheath a handle of surprising length. Holding butt of parasol in right hand she cranes hack and down to her right to hang over WILLIE.) Hoo-oo! (Pause.) Willie! (Pause.) Wonderful gift. (She strikes down at him with beak of parasol.) Wish I had it. (She strikes again. The parasol slips from her grasp and falls behind mound. It is immediately restored to her by WILLIE's invisible hand.) Thank you, dear. (She transfers parasol to left hand, turns back front and examines right palm.) Damp. (Returns parasol to right hand, examines left palm.) Ah well, no worse. (Head up, cheerfully.) No better, no worse, no change. (Pause. Do.) No pain. (Cranes back to look down at WILLIE, holding parasol by butt as before.) Don't go off on me again now dear will you please, I may need you. (Pause.) No hurry, no hurry, just don't curl up on me again. (Turns back front, lays down parasol, examines palms together, wipes them on grass.) Perhaps a shade off colour just the same. (Turns to bag, rummages in it, brings out revolver, holds it up, kisses it rapidly, puts it back, rummages, brings out almost empty bottle of red medicine, turns back front, looks for spectacles, puts them on, reads label.) Loss of spirits . . . lack of keenness . . . want of appetite . . . infants . . . children . . . adults . . . six level . . . tablespoonfuls daily -- (head up, smile) -- the old style! -- (smile off, head down, reads) -- daily . . . before and after . . . meals . . . instantaneous . . . (looks closer) . . . improvement. (Takes off spectacles, lays them down, holds up bottle at arm's length to see level, unscrews cap, swigs it off head well back, tosses cap and bottle away in WILLIE's direction. Sound of breaking glass.) Ah that's better! (Turns to bag, rummages in it, brings out lipstick, turns back front, examines lipstick.) Running out. (Looks for spectacles.) Ah well. (Puts on spectacles, looks for mirror.) Musn't complain. (Takes up mirror, starts doing lips.) What is that wonderful line? (Lips.) Oh fleeting joys -- (lips) -- oh something lasting woe. (Lips. She is interrupted by disturbance from WILLIE. He is sitting up. She lowers lipstick and mirror and cranes back and down to look at him. Pause. Top back of WILLIE's bald head, trickling blood, rises to view above slope, comes to rest. WINNIE pushes up her spectacles. Pause. His hand appears with handkerchief, spreads it on skull, disappears. Pause. The hand appears with boater, club ribbon, settles it on head, rakish angle, disappears. Pause. WINNIE cranes a little further back and down.) Slip on your drawers, dear, before you get singed. (Pause.) No? (Pause.) Oh I see, you still have some of that stuff left. (Pause.) Work it well in, dear. (Pause.) Now the other. (Pause. She turns back front, gazes before her. Happy expression.) Oh this is going to be another happy day! (Pause. Happy expression off. She pulls down spectacles and resumes lips. WILLIE opens newspaper, hands invisible. Tops of yellow sheets appear on either side of his head. WINNIE finishes lips, inspects them in mirror held a little further away.) Ensign crimson. (WILLIE turns page. WINNIE lays down lipstick and mirror, turns towards bag.) Pale flag.
    WILLIE turns page. WINNIE rummages in bag, brings out small ornate brimless hat with crumpled feather, turns back front, straightens hat, smooths feather, raises it towards head, arrests gesture as WILLIE reads.

  13. #13
    Krappís Last Tape:

    Just been listening to that stupid bastard I took myself for thirty years ago, hard to beleive I was ever as bad as that. Thank God that's all done with anyway. (Pause.) The eyes she had! (Broods, realizes he is recording silence, switches off, broods. Finally.) Everything there, everything, all the--(Realizing this is not being recorded, switches on.) Everything there, everything on this old muckball, all the light and dark and famine and feasting of . . . (hesitates) . . . the ages! (In a shout.) Yes! (Pause.) Let that go! Jesus! Take his mind off his homework! Jesus (Pause. Weary.) Ah well, maybe he was right. (Broods. Realizes. Switches off. Consults envelope.) Pah! (Crumples it and throws it away. Broods. Switches on.) Nothing to say, not a squeak. What's a year now? The sour cud and the iron stool. (Pause.) Revelled in the word spool. (With relish.) Spooool! Happiest moment of the past half million. (Pause.) Seventeen copies sold, of which eleven at trade price to free circulating libraries beyond the seas. Getting known. (Pause.) One pound six and something, eight I have little doubt. (Pause.) Crawled out once or twice, before the summer was cold. Sat shivering in the park, drowned in dreams and burning to be gone. Not a soul. (Pause.) Last fancies. (Vehemently.) Keep 'em under! (Pause.) Scalded the eyes out of me reading Effir again, a page a day, with tears again. Effie . . . (Pause.) Could have been happy with her, up there on the Baltic, and the pines, and the dunes. (Pause.) Could I? (Pause.) And she? (Pause.) Pah! (Pause.) Fanny came in a couple of times. Bony old ghost of a whore. Couldn't do much, but I suppose better than a kick in the crutch. The last time wasn't so bad. How do you manage it, she said, at your age? I told her I'd been saving up for her all my life. (Pause.) Went to Vespers once, like when I as in short trousers. (Pause. Sings.))
    Now the day is over,
    Night is drawing nigh-igh,
    Shadows--(coughing, then almost inaudible)--of the evening
    Steal across the sky.
    (Gasping.) Went to sleep and fell off the pew. (Pause.) Sometimes wondered in the night if a last effort mightn't--(Pause.) Ah finish yout booze now and get to your bed. Go on with this drivel in the morning. Or leave it at that. (Pause.) Leave it at that. (Pause.) Lie propped up in the dark--and wander. Be again in the dingle on a Christmas Eve, gathering holly, the red-berried. (Pause.) Be again on Croghan on a Sunday morning, in the haze, with the *****, stop and listen to the bells. (Pause.) And so on. (Pause.) Be again, be again. (Pause.) All that old misery. (Pause.) Once wasn't enough for you. (Pause.) Lie down across her.
    Long pause. He suddenly bends over machine, switches off, wrenches off tape, throws it away, puts on the other, winds it foreward to the passage he wants, switches on, listens staring front.
    --gooseberries, she said. I said again I thought it was hopeless and no good going on, and she agreed, without opening her eyes. (Pause.) I asked her to look at me and after a few moments--(pause)--after a few moments she did, but the eyes just slits, because of the glare. I bent over her to get them in the shadow and they opened. (Pause. Low.) Let me in. (Pause.) We drifted in among the flags and stuck. The way they went down, sighing, before the stem! (Pause.) I lay down across her with my face in her breasts and my hand on her. We lay there without moving. But under us all moved, and moved us, gently, up and down, and from side to side.
    Pause. Krapp's lips move. No sound.
    Past midnight. Never knew such silence. The earth might be uninhabited.
    Here I end this reel. Box--(pause)--three, spool--(pause)--five. (Pause. Perhaps my best years are gone. When there was a chance of happiness. But I wouldn't want them back. Not with the fire in me now. No, I wouldn't want them back.
    Krapp motionless staring before him. The tape runs on in silence.

  14. #14
    Super papayahed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    So, Unname. Are you a fan of Beckett?
    Do, or do not. There is no try. - Yoda

  15. #15
    Fan? Iím a devotee. He has such cool sunglasses!

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