Comedy of Eros
The Mermaid riding a Dolphin
ALTINA, the Queen ́s maid
LEIA , a nymph, Melcatec ́s lover FILOMELA , another nymph, Jacinto ́s lover MELCATEC , a fawn
JACINTO, a young fawn
SIMPLÓRIO, (Simpleton), a shepherd
ACT ONE SCENE ONE
FIRST SPEECH OF THE MERMAID RIDING A DOLPHIN
It is all schist burning split and crumble
The air a flaming dry forty centigrade
High black saw-like sierras crashing
Over black raging waters that receive them
As wolves their own reflection would
Disagreeing in unison growling and ready Foaming in their search where light is no character Sniffing round and round for the end of the canyon And the final hour of their autonomy
From this dark and brusque and sharp shiny matter Surge from time to time some green puff of lichen Red dainty surfaces sulphurous yellows
These, eager and thirsty, hating the cool fresh waters Against those, eager to please and bite and flood Each element fixed in its own prison nature
Here dwell mighty Oberon and his wife Titania In perfect dissension
Of their discord a progeny of evils flowed
That shuffles the world and terrifies mortal kind.
OBERON – It is the mere strength of my wrath that unleashes the storms; I myself throw the thunder, so that it travels through the clouds, along with the furious lightning bolt; I am the cause of all such effects – and there is no corner in all of my domain, that the sound of my anger will not reach, if and when I choose to.
(TITANIA waves to ALTINA, who approaches her with fear)
TITANIA – How many bags of belladona did you put in?
ALTINA – Six - and two halves, left from last time. He ́s in for a treat. TITANIA – And salt?
ALTINA – Much less, Majesty, as the physician ordered.
TITANIA – We don ́t want him to be ill.
OBERON – This is how my father made me. From him, I learnt the art of the Unleashing of the Wrath, which in regular cycles spontaneously springs from my gut. I recall some of the incidents, may they be recorded for the future : a single one of my shouts, flung with righteous opportunity, was quite enough to force the trees to bury their leaves deep in the ground and, as flaring hares, rivers ran up canyons with their legs between their tails! (Sic. He laughs heartily) And when Hypander, the fool,
many years back, had the notion to covet my wife and my kingdom...
TITANIA – Honey pie...? It is time...
OBERON – (aside) But haste, I must hurry, for in the afternoon, after a short siesta, I have rendez-vous with sweet Juvenilia, the teasing nymph that fills me with sweet desire....
TITANIA – Altina! Lunch!
( ALTINA pushes a huge tea cart with a huge bowl of soup. She puts it in front of OBERON)
OBERON - (he drinks the soup) It is good!
(He shouts loudly, poisoned, and falls on the table. TITANIA gets up and stands behind
him. She punches him hard on the back. He does not react).
TITANIA (to ALTINA) - Go call them. Run. Quick.
( Exits ALTINA. TITANIA paces the floor, stopping near OBERON from time to time. She pauses and listens, watching out for his breath. FILOMELA and LEIA, hidden, follow the scene)
LEIA – Is he breathing?
FILOMELA – I see no sign of life.
LEIA – His back is still.
FILOMELA - Not a single lock of hair moves by his mouth. LEIA– Shh. They come.
(Enter MELCATEC and JACINTO, with ALTINA)
TITANIA - (threateningly) Come in, come in. Forgive me. Were you resting? Forgive me, then. See the king, Oberon, my lord...He is not breathing. Look. See for yourselves. Listen to his heart : it is silent. Put your ear to it. Not a sound. And movement? Not one. He was eating his soup and he said it was good, he was licking his lips, wiping his mouth to the back of his hand, as he usually does, does he not, Altina? (ALTINA bows) And suddenly, as if a demon from hell, passing by, stole his breath...There he is. He said : it is good, hey, Altina? (ALTINA bows) And he fell on the table. I am sure it was his heart, our lord had a weak heart, hey Altina? (ALTINA bows)
MELCATEC – What shall we do?
TITANIA – Keep it a secret. This is what you and I shall do.
MELCATEC – How can we keep the lack of a king a secret?
TITANIA - And who is going to miss him, pray? The people?
MELCATEC – No, not the people, they have busy lives. But his court...
TITANIA - We ́ll think up of something in the way of a fiction. Now: take him to the woods and bury him. Go, now!
(MELCATEC and JACINTO start dragging OBERON out of the palace, somewhat frightened. LEIA and FILOMELA observe the scene, still hidden).
FILOMELA – And yet, he was quite healthy, our lord. LEIA - Except for that late bout of gout...
FILOMELA – After the nasty fall on the overly waxed floor of Titania ́s quarters.
LEIA – And he complained to us , do you not remember, that his heart seemed not to fit in his chest.
FILOMELA – Because of the many secrets tied within.
LEIA – And he developed a sensitive gut...
FILOMELA – By way of Titania ́s poisonous soups!
LEIA – (putting her hand on Filomela ́s mouth) Shh, she ́ll hear you!
TITANIA - (to herself) Who will miss an absent king? Good riddance, away with him!
ACT ONE SCENE TWO
SECOND SPEECH OF THE MERMAID RIDING A DOLPHIN
Further on away from the cliffs
A lovely wood has taken its amorous form Delectable and delightful as much as
It could in such barren arid country
Not far from the brutal crag and
The open roaring waters below
Cool grass and flowery mosses grew
By both sides of a happy go creek Shepherd ́s promenade
Cavorting sheep ́s recreation
There lovers play their lover ́s games (Behind the occasional bush
The daring fawn and the naked nymph
Join both their cries in trembling tremor) Except for Melcatec and his brother Jacinto Courting coyly each one per se
Melcatec modest Leia
Jacinto Filomela the sensitive
They all watch over poisoned Oberon
Vigil to each other they reveal
Love and sorrow and all of Love ́s travails.
(While the MERMAID is speaking, LEIA and FILOMELA pour a potion into OBERON
́s ear. MELCATEC and JACINTO watch them. Then, MELCATEC leads LEIA by the hand to the left, and FILOMELA takes JACINTO to the right and the four of them sit in couples watching OBERON asleep. MELCATEC tries to kiss LEIA).
LEIA- If I kiss you what will you turn into?
MELCATEC - You mean a prince, or a frog? Or a donkey?
LEIA – What will it be?
MELCATEC- If I turn into something else, will you kiss me again?
LEIA- If I kiss you again, will you turn back into what you were? Or will you always be turning into new and different things?
MELCATEC-I shall be a white rhinoceros, a mighty centaur, a minotaur...
LEIA- Alas, poor me!
MELCATEC- Growing stronger and mightier with every kiss!
LEIA – I would want you to turn exactly into what you were when I first kissed you. MELCATEC – Would you?
LEIA – Otherwise, why would I want to kiss you again?
(FILOMELA and JACINTO in the wood, by the creek)
FILOMELA – Will you always want me?
JACINTO – I always have.
FILOMELA – But will you always want me?
JACINTO – If you won ́t change.
FILOMELA – I won ́t change, if you won ́t change. JACINTO – Would you stop wanting me, if I changed? FILOMELA – If you changed, what would you become? JACINTO – Something. Something else.
(OBERON is waking up. LEIA impulsively kisses MELCATEC)
LEIA – I may not be pleased with what you will turn into. MELCATEC – Kiss me and we ́ll see.
LEIA- No, not like this.
MELCATEC – Then you will never kiss me.
LEIA - What if you turn into an ass, or a reptile, or a statue of salt, and never regain your original shape?
MELCATEC – That would be original...
LEIA - Will we both forget what we were before?
MELCATEC- Who knows?
LEIA – Will we love our new shapes? What shall I become? What will become of me? MELCATEC - We shall become lovers. (aside) She burns, the nymph, in the fire of Reason.
LEIA – What shall I turn into? A graveyard worm? A sword? Princess Ruler? MELCATEC – What other rule must you have, if you rule over me?
LEIA – I was daydreaming.
MELCATEC - Can a kiss be all that effective?
LEIA- If not that powerful a kiss, why try it at all?
( JACINTO and FILOMELA , leaning against the hollow tree)
JACINTO – But have I changed? What do you say, have I changed?
FILOMELA – Yesterday you didn ́t care about me , today you swear you will always want me.
JACINTO – I have always wanted you, even if I did not know it.
FILOMELA – Yesterday I did not exist.
JACINTO – Who were you, yesterday?
FILOMELA – Who am I, today?
JACINTO – The woman I love.
FILOMELA – Than I must have changed. Or you did.
JACINTO – Things have changed. You are different.
FILOMELA – How am I different?
JACINTO – Nobler, sweeter, fairer.
FILOMELA – This is how you see me today. How will you see me tomorrow? JACINTO - I ́ll see what I ́ll see.
FILOMELA – Will you want me always?
JACINTO – (impatiently) Yes, yes, always.
LEIA – Night falls. I hear vespers. MELCATEC – Oberon awakes.
(OBERON gets up, with great difficulty. He does not see the others).
OBERON – Juvenilia! Juvenilia! What have I done? What a wretch I am! (He weeps) I dined of Altina ́s finest soup in the palace and I ran to meet you. Nymph!
JACINTO – What is he saying?
OBERON - Why did you refuse me? Why did you run?
MELCATEC – Is he wide awake, or is he still dreaming?
JACINTO – We sat by him every hour of his sleep.
MELCATEC – Is this a side effect of Filomela ́s benign potion?
OBERON – I ran through the forest. I hunted you down. I thought we were playing like lovers, you running away from me, and I , in pursuit. But I did not hear you laugh! By the lake, beyond the creek, that is where I held you down. I remember it well. Why did you fight in my embrace? Why did you reject me?
JACINTO – We saw with our very eyes, how our sisters prepared the concoction of mysterious herbs and poured it drop by drop into our father ́s ear.
MELCATEC – We saw it very clearly. The intention was good.
OBERON – We fought by the lake. I held you forcefully with both these hands. My body struggled to and fro inside your own. And with heated shouts I tried to persuade you of my love and of my will. The nymph bent this way and that, as if shaken by the wind. A thought crossed my mind : the nymph is the trunk of a flower, a thorny rose... (he weeps) And I could hear her ribs cracking under my manly enthusiasm! Poor Juvenilia! She fell a victim to my love and to my strength.
MELCATEC – What is he saying of Juvenilia?
FILOMELA – He takes the present vision of his dream for what is really in the past. Juvenilia has stuck her roots in the ground for over three moons now.
MELCATEC - Roots and more, for, turned into a rosebush, Juvenilia has grown and blossomed!
LEIA – Sad Juvenilia! It was the beauty of her limbs, the harmony of her features that determined her fall!
FILOMELA – And he still sees in his dream how she resisted him. LEIA – And reason eludes him.
(OBERON exits, shuffling and tearful, without ever noticing the others.. Enters SIMPLÓRIO, who introduces the theme of the happy love, candid, “natural” and faithful.)
Love has its long litany of tyranny
Of changed changes and of pyrrhony All swear to be forever true
Ardent and passionate for eternity
But alas all cry in synchrony
When Love demands
And “weep!” commands
And to sorrow condemns
But the shepherdess who has me content Is substantially altogether different
She has but one word and in her breast One golden heart beats loyal and...
( Enters HONESTO , who is ALTINA, in love with SIMPLÓRIO, and has disguised herself as a shepherd to know and win his heart. He sits down by the hollow tree,.sighing)
SIMPLÓRIO – You look quite discomfited.
HONESTO – What you see is not me.
SIMPLÓRIO – Aren ́t you Honesto, the shepherd?
HONESTO – Indeed I was, before Love killed me.
SIMPLÓRIO – I find you changed. Your voice is softer.
HONESTO- It depends on whom I ́m speaking to. If you were my dog, I ́d talk louder. SIMPLÓRIO – And you look smaller. Did you lose height?
HONESTO – Under the weight of my sorrows, I am growing down, the earth is pulling me...
SIMPLÓRIO – Oh, come off it! You jest! Tell me, what news?
HONESTO – There are always news, if one would care to hear them.
SIMPLÓRIO- I see that you add salt to sorrow, so that it stings.
HONESTO – Unwillingly, for my will is not free. Were I free...
SIMPLÓRIO – You are free to want the one that you desire.
HONESTO – I desire to be free from my desire. Which, like the arrow, does not fly in any other direction.
SIMPLÓRIO – I don ́t know about sorrow first hand. But I ́ve heard about it. Madalena is a good lass and true to me.
HONESTO - (aside) It is the shepherdess he loves...Alas...( To SIMPLÓRIO) Who is this Madalena?
SIMPLÓRIO – The shepherdess from the Valley, don ́t you know her? I saw her in church, we danced together, I proposed, she said yes...We ́ll be married by midsummer ́s night.
HONESTO - (rising, upset) Oh, my! Oh, me! Is she blond?
(Each time SIMPLÓRIO answers, HONESTO nods, as if already knew the answer)
SIMPLÓRIO – Blond as the sun.
HONESTO – Tall and graceful as a poplar?
SIMPLÓRIO – A poplar?
HONESTO – A willow?
SIMPLÓRIO – A willow?
HONESTO – A cypress?
SIMPLÓRIO – Yes, she is tall, but not that tall.
HONESTO – And is her skin very fair?
SIMPLÓRIO – White as snow itself.
HONESTO – And her neck?
SIMPLÓRIO – Long as the neck of a bottle.
HONESTO – A bottle! And her eyes?
SIMPLÓRIO and HONESTO (at the same time) – Brown, splendidly shaped like almonds.
HONESTO – Her waist?
SIMPLÓRIO – Thin as a wasp ́s.
HONESTO – Her foot?
SIMPLÓRIO – You won ́t find any smaller.
HONESTO – And she sings?
SIMPLÓRIO – Like an angel.
HONESTO – Like a nightingale. And the inner part of her thighs?
SIMPLÓRIO – White...velvety...( rising) What is your business with the inner part of her thighs?
HONESTO – No business at all, do not torture yourself. I was just asking.
SIMPLÓRIO – Why were you asking? What is this question about her thighs? HONESTO – Do not insist.
SIMPLÓRIO – I want to know!
HONESTO – I saw a shepherdess, and she was walking and singing through the valley. And she was just like you described her to me. I went to her and we talked. SIMPLÓRIO – You talked? And what did you say to her?
HONESTO – Nothing.
SIMPLÓRIO – What did you say to her?
HONESTO - That I wanted her.
SIMPLÓRIO – And she?
HONESTO - (pretending to lie) Nothing.
SIMPLÓRIO – I see.
HONESTO – Don ́t you trust her?
SIMPLÓRIO – I do.
HONESTO - So, there.
SIMPLÓRIO – What did you do to her?
HONESTO – I did nothing without her consent.
SIMPLÓRIO – Tell me!
HONESTO – I did nothing to her! She did nothing to me! I said nothing to her! She told me nothing!
SIMPLÓRIO – What would she do to you?
HONESTO – Nothing!
SIMPLÓRIO - You lie!
HONESTO – Would I lie to my best friend?
SIMPLÓRIO – My best friend does not woo my girlfriend.
HONESTO – How could I know? I told you that I saw her, that I followed her... SIMPLÓRIO – That you touched her!
HONESTO – No, you said it.
SIMPLÓRIO – You did it !
HONESTO – Have faith. I did not.
SIMPLÓRIO – Now I need hope, more than faith.
HONESTO – Do not despair. Madalena is yours.
SIMPLÓRIO – Is this your gift?
HONESTO – Simplório!
SIMPLÓRIO - (exits) Be well.
HONESTO/ALTINA – (takes off her hat and lets down her hair)
ready to suspect...And the lies of the world have in him their best affiliate. It is him, even at his most confident, the first to weave, with a lover ́s devotion, his own undoing...I told Simplório that Madalena spoke to me, he ran to her, to ask her for some explanation...And the more she ́ll deny it and blush, the steadier his suspicion and his jealousy will become...And her protests of love and demonstrations will be met by his rejection. He ́ll turn her away, he will think her false, unfaithful, wordy...And in a while, he ́ll be mine. I know his heart inside out, I can turn him this way and that as I please. And if I fail, I shall consult Titania ́s magic virtues and her crafts...
ACT TWO SCENE ONE
THIRD SPEECH OF THE MERMAID RIDING A DOLPHIN
A lover is always
Look at the fireplace how it glows and lights In Titania ́s huge top class first rate mansion Counting thirty six royal chambers
Infinite intricate rooms and salons
Endless corridors, staircases, hallways Hundreds of pillars and vaults Spiralling stairs that lead
To private clouds, reserved rooms Observatories over the Kingdom
Of all of these Titania has the key
(Not in her nature to trust others)
And only faithful Altina, prey to fear,
Sometimes hums a request, whispering
She wants to go and feed the sparrows
At the upper corner, the furthest from the centre,
Away from the living room, the fireplace and the Queen.
(Enters OBERON, rather sick. TITANIA follows him around).
TITANIA – The broth you had after lunch did not agree with you, my lord?
OBERON – It was good and rich. It was my nap, it upset the flowing of my fluids. My insides burn. (He sits at the table) What ́s for supper, dear?
TITANIA - You ́ll have the leg of lamb. A new recipe. We ́ve added a few herbs to calm you down.
OBERON – I need them badly, my soul is heavy.
TITANIA – We ́ll lighten that weight, body and soul.
OBERON - (sighs) Sorrows.
TITANIA – Deep burdens indeed, as I see them.
OBERON – Longing, dreams that I dreamt, aggravation...
TITANIA – All of it weighty causes of grief.
OBERON – It is as you say.
TITANIA – And the government of our provinces?
OBERON – Didn ́t think abou it.
TITANIA – And the education of our princes?
OBERON – We ́ll have to see about that, won ́t we?
TITANIA – And the empty Treasury?
OBERON – What am I to do?
TITANIA – There ́s no need for a king, then.
OBERON – I fell asleep, didn ́t I tell you before?
TITANIA – And what did you dream?
OBERON - I dreamt of an army.
TITANIA - (aside) An army of nymphs, no doubt.
OBERON - I was commanding this great army...
TITANIA – But not at the head...
OBERON – I was shouting out my commands...
TITANIA – From the rear.
OBERON – The army was moving forward...
TITANIA – And my lord was going backwards...
OBERON - Now, at a certain point...
TITANIA - On and on it went until the infantry fell off the cliff, and after them the
(Pause) What ails you, my
second line of lancers, and the horsemen and the horses, finally all of them fell into the river and were drowned. And when they were drowned, there was silence again, and my lord could rest in peace.
OBERON – Exactly so.
TITANIA – I know the story. (Calls out) Altina!
(ALTINA, the maid, enters carrying a tray. On it , a huge roasted leg of lamb. Suddenly, TITANIA takes the leg of lamb and runs toward OBERON, hitting him repeatedly on the head with it. OBERON falls on the table. ALTINA has turned her back on the scene and covered her face with her apron. When TITANIA is through, ALTINA takes the leg of lamb from her hands and puts it back on the plate and the plate on the tray. They stand, looking at OBERON).
TITANIA - (furious) Call them! Hurry! (ALTINA does not move, TITANIA shakes her) Go and get them!
( ALTINA does not know what to do with the tray. Then she puts it on the table and exits).
Oh, I can breathe! I can breathe, at last! The thorn in my throat, the weight across my breast, has gone its way! Free at last of vengeful thoughts, free of bitterness, of resentment...All is done, all is decided...all is well. The thorn, the pain of this thorn has dissolved itself in joy...Out of my way! Oh, I can breathe, freely!
(Enter MELCATEC and JACINTO)
TITANIA - My adorable darlings! Come to me! Look, how handsome you both are! How I missed you, how I missed you! Turn around, let me look at you properly! How I missed you, oh how I missed you, my dear children! You were so small just a moment ago, so very small, and now just look at you! You gorgeous, wonderful creatures! MELCATEC – At your service, my lady.
TITANIA - (points at OBERON) Look , he ́s at it again. My lord and king, resisting as always the wise advice of his physicians...has gotten himself in a bit of a stew...he watered and watered it (she pours wine in the king ́s glass, which was empty) ... he salted it and salted it... and he did not resist... he fell, lifeless.
MELCATEC - His plate is empty.
JACINTO – The roast is over there, at the corner, still wobbly.
TITANIA – A violent spasm and his heart burst.
MELCATEC – How can this be, my queen?
TITANIA – It is quite prodigious, I don ́t deny it.
JACINTO – Look how he bleeds, our king...
TITANIA – How many of such prodigies, and even more prodigious, haven ́t we heard about in our kingdom alone ?
MELCATEC - ( aside) Prodigies of evil such as this.
TITANIA - (taking MELCATEC ́s arm, threateningly) His physician has predicted this, he has warned our king about the power of salt, countless times... What did the physician say, Altina? Saltless broth and loving care. An insipid train of life.
(To MELCATEC and JACINTO)
Do this for your lady now, take your king to the quiet wood, and dig a deep hole and lay him down in it, at the very bottom, straight and silent, his eyes closed, keeping his hands to himself at last, crossed over the mighty chest. In the deep wood he ́ll proof useful...( aside) to the worms!
(MELCATEC and JACINTO start dragging OBERON out) Careful! Be careful!
( She straigntens OBERON ́ s leg with a kick). Let nobody see you! Do not be long! (She follows them out, trying to push OBERON with her foot).Careful with his head, don ́t hit it against the door! Oh, you incompetent lot!
ACT TWO SCENE TWO
FOURTH SPEECH OF THE MERMAID RIDING A DOLPHIN
The moon has melted in the sky Finished its perfect cycle
There are less shadows in the wood With eyes thus blinded
Hands search for their own good And their good pleasure
Darkness begets, my lords and ladies Angry love
From above, from the crystal spheres And the burnt out stars
Darkness falls into the soul
The wood is made of sighs
And cries, of firm requests And contradiction.
(LEIA and MELCATEC, by the creek)
LEIA- Which part of me do you love best? MELCATEC- All of you.
LEIA- Is it my eyes?
LEIA -Is it my mouth?
LEIA -Is it my long fair hair?
LEIA - Is it my hands?
MELCATEC - No.
LEIA - Is it my ears? The perfect shape of my ear lobes?
LEIA -Well, then, there ́s not much left to love...
MELCATEC – So much is left.
LEIA - Tell me what is left.
MELCATEC - The nails, the teeth, the skin, the marrow of your bones...
LEIA – You mock me.
MELCATEC - The sensuous red of the inside of your mouth when I ́m peeking down your throat.. the heart, all your the muscles, the kidneys, the liver, the serous membranes, the spleen...
LEIA – I am not listening.
MELCATEC – The mucus of your mucosa...the lungs, the intestines, the stomach, the excrement, the bile, the phlegm, the pus, the blood, the grease, the fat, the tears, the sweat, the spittle, the snot, the fluid of the joints, the urine, the brain inside your skull, white and grey.
LEIA - So what you love best is my intestines, my sweat, my fat? MELCATEC - No.
LEIA - What then, tell me.
MELCATEC - The vessels in which your blood flows.
LEIA - It cannot be.
MELCATEC- The circulation of your blood.
LEIA – You mean my soul, surely, my inner beauty.
MELCATEC - I mean exactly that what I love best about you is the circulation of your blood, the way it bathes and feeds your insides, the way it keeps you so very very rosy and lovely.
LEIA - So it is not my eyes? My natural graces?
MELCATEC - It is the circulation of your blood that makes you blush when I kiss you.
(They kiss; FILOMELA and JACINTO are lying side by side, to the right of OBERON . JACINTO sleeps)
FILOMELA – Time passes by. Time runs away. I can hear it passing by and running away. It is at night that I listen to the passage of time over me and I would see, dare I try, its shiny trace right here, on the skin of my arm, sending shivers down my spine as a snail ́s consequence. Jacinto alone makes me this aware of the hours that go by. My heart, instant by instant, gradually lost its original shape, and took on the form of a clock, this pendulum swaying in my breast : how much time do I have left? How long will he stay with me? Will he still be with me tomorrow? When I wake, I touch his side of our bed... He is not there, he has fled...He went on to be Jacinto far away from me.
JACINTO - (waking up) What were you saying? FILOMELA – I was talking to you.
JACINTO – I was asleep.
FILOMELA – Yes, I know.
(MELCATEC and LEIA , facing each other, on their knees)
MELCATEC – Is it no, is it yes?
LEIA – Soon...
MELCATEC – Soon it will be yes, or no? LEIA – I will know then.
MELCATEC – What are these calculations, this keeping of accounts, this give and take, forwards and retreats?
LEIA – They are not retreats.
MELCATEC – Either you want me or you don ́t want me. And if you don ́t want me now, why should you want me later?
LEIA – First, I want to watch you sleep. MELCATEC - Watch me sleep?
(LEIA nods, naughtily)
MELCATEC – You have seen me sleep plenty of times, here, and in the palace, when we were children, why this whim, now, this strange request? Your love is full of terms, and clauses, and conditions!
LEIA – I want to watch you sleep now.
MELCATEC – I am not sleepy now.
LEIA – When you fall asleep, then.
MELCATEC – And when I wake up will you tell me if it is yes or it is no? And then we shall consummate our...
LEIA – Engagement? Yes, when you awake, I shall tell you.
MELCATEC - (lying down, closes his eyes) I ́ll sleep right away. I ́ll sleep fast. I want to have you today.
LEIA – Rest now.
( LEIA gets up, goes to OBERON, who moans in his sleep)
LEIA – ( touching OBERON ́s face) Father, please don ́t suffer. Sleep. Filomela has chosen with great care the filter that we made you drink. It has the wonderful virtue of oblivion. And, reanimated, you will find that the happiness of not feeling a greater pain will efface the pain that you will still be feeling.
( LEIA falls asleep by OBERON and MELCATEC wakes up)
MELCATEC – ( he gets up, finds LEIA asleep by OBERON) Ah, Melcatec, I do not understand you...I do not understand you...You are a stranger to me now...Where is that vigorous Melcatec, tough, mischievous, light, always ready to laugh, to mock and betray? Where is he? Where has he gone to? Who has seen him? And now, subject to the rigours of a capricious nymph, an ass on a leash, where is that noble Melcatec who subjected nymphs, princesses, servants and all of those who dared cross his path? (He hits his head against the hollow tree) But it ended up by being Leia who overwhelmed me, Leia of the rosy fingers, with her high and disagreeable little girl ́s voice! With her refusal, her injunctions! (He approaches LEIA)
I will have her now, while she sleeps! Under the black cloak of night, for the thin moon is absent, behind fat clouds! Hide, star, do not witness such a foul act! (He moans) No, I cannot! I ́ll give her a potion, a filter, to make her forget it! And when she wakes, she ́ll find herself a woman, and she won ́t remember the event itself. Oh, how long will I bear this waiting? Melcatec was not born to bear such a fate! It goes against nature! Melcatec wants...he wants... ( He kneels down by LEIA, reaches out to touch her, but cannot) I will take her now! Right away! Her maidenly modesty will not be chastised, since she will be sleeping, and her maidenly pride will remain intact, since she will not consider herself taken! Nor subjected, since she was asleep! I ́ll tell her that she dreamt it! (He gives up) I dreamt it! What a terrible power she hold over me, for even when she sleeps she leads me and holds me down! How I miss love potions! Magical oils, rubbed onto eyelids, so that she will follow me, want me, of her own free will, without lamentations, without negotiations!
(LEIA wakes up, she finds it strange to see MELCATEC on top of her)
LEIA – What are you doing?
MELCATEC - I was watching you sleep.
LEIA - What did you think of my sleeping then? MELCATEC – I think I ́ll never stop wanting you.
( Enters SIMPLÓRIO )
Night spreads over the valley
I heard the tower ́s bell of Belém Monastery Come vespers or dawn my sorrow never sleeps No flower in the fields, no calf in my stable Can ever cheer me up
And every toll of the bell
Tells me a different truth:
Madalena is untrue
Honesto is deceiving you
A breast contrary to my own
In my breast beats as strong
And makes me lose my course
And then the commentary:
Madalena loves you well
Tells me the Belém bell
Honesto is your true friend
Tells me the same mocking bell
And it is my sorrow fate
That I should be crazed by a bell
Honesto speaks the truth
His friendship is sound and real
Madalena did not yield
In such dreary debate
Weeping and toiling
Hitherto we come
My torment and I
ACT III Scene I
(in TITANIA ́s palace)
TITANIA - He lives! I know he lives! I know it!
ALTINA – Madam, it is impossible!
TITANIA - (hitting her with closed fists) It is impossible not to feel what I feel! It is impossible not to know what I know! I know he lives! I know that he breathes and infects to air with his breath! Somewhere in the shrivelled wood where my slaves have taken him, he moans, he aches, he winces...but he lives!
ALTINA – Next time I ́ll put in more salt!
TITANIA – It is not the salt, nor the herbs, nor the meat, nor the soup! It is his evil nature, his incorruptible evil nature!
ALTINA – Well, then, I really don ́t know what else to do. We have waxed the floor...
TITANIA – Not enough to send him to hell.
ALTINA – We have... seasoned his soup.
TITANIA – He recovered during his siesta.
ALTINA – We have shot a diverted arrow unintentionally in his direction... TITANIA – I almost died myself. Wretched prey was he, and he escaped.
ALTINA - Hard to catch. We have hit him hard with the leg of lamb...
TITANIA – Even with a whole lamb, he would live.
ALTINA – What shall you do?
TITANIA – I do not fear revenge and I do not fear betrayal. But I can smell witches and witch crafts...
ALTINA - (fearful) Witches...?
TITANIA - Oh, yes! Every time my slaves drag Oberon to the open grave, he resurrects, recovered and gay...Who is with them? Who accompanies them? My servants, Filomela and Leia, false faithful friends of mine...
ALTINA – Witches?
TITANIA – They ́ll have their herbal teas and natural rubbing oils...but the mighty powers are mine alone.
( Enters OBERON , quite unsteady)
TITANIA – My Lord!
OBERON – I ́ve come from the hunt, dear. TITANIA – Who hunted you?
OBERON – No one, that I can recall. TITANIA – What a good idea someone had.
OBERON – My soul aches to the core.
TITANIA – If you have one, we have remedies.
OBERON – I have been having hard dreams, that run me down. TITANIA - (aside) We ́ll see who ́ll run you don.
OBERON – And such a headache!
TITANIA – It will soon pass. (Aside) And another will come.
(OBERON leans on ALTINA and exits)
My soul aches to the core! Even in agony he is pedantic!
TITANIA - Darling! My precious jewel! Sunshine of my middle age! Come , kiss me, darling!
LEIA - (bowing) - I am so very happy to find you in such a cheerful mood... TITANIA – Cheerful? Well, no...I would say ready...ready for anything. This is the case... (breaks off) But, before we proceed, tell me this : where is Juvenilia ? I haven ́t seen her prowling Oberon ́s quarters...
LEIA - (coy) She is a most fertile rosebush by now.
TITANIA – I see. And the nymph Treva, what happened to her?
LEIA – She is one of the most admired boulders of our coast.
TITANIA – And Jacquenette, my own slave?
LEIA – She runs free through the fields, turned into a female deer, with her young ones in her wake.
TITANIA – And Adiposa, the obese nymph?
LEIA – She was so fortunate as to escape. She threw herself into the ocean. She drowned, so to speak, of natural causes.
TITANIA - (furious) Are there any women shaped like women left in my kingdom? Or all we have are boulders, wild deer, thorny bushes?
LEIA – You know that we are very few, Madam, and altogether very pursued. TITANIA - Let ́s go on then. This is what I want to tell you, my darling daughter.
(She pushes LEIA to the chair and makes her sit) LEIA - (flattered, kisses TITANIA`s hand) My lady!
TITANIA – Oberon is our king. We owe him love and obedience. Lo-ve and obe-di-en- ce. He may reap all of the youth of our gender and turn it into natural assets to beautify our landscapes, he may humiliate each time our sex, he may not leave a single woman worthy of that name – love and obedience, that ́s what we owe him and that is what he will take from us. (Pause) However....
LEIA – However....
TITANIA – The gods gave us flowers in the fields, beasts of virtue, miraculous springs, and they also gave us...(points at her head)
LEIA – Beautiful hair.
TITANIA – Yes, quite. But more than that – for the gods take their work to perfection- they gave us a divine sparkle, the glint of Reason . So, with Thought we have... (she gestures “strong”)
LEIA – Beautiful hands.
TITANIA – Strength, experience, power. And we walk the fields and pick daisies and vervain and artemisia and belladona...and we hunt down serpents and bats and twist their necks, and we rip off the bats ́s wings and the rats ́s insides and we cut up the owls of the towers...and with all these tiny little bits of beasts we prepare oin...oin...
TITANIA – Oint...
LEIA – Ointiques...?
TITANIA – Ointments and po...
LEIA – Po...Po...
TITANIA - ...tions! Ointments, potions and filters, that we use both to induce pain and to relieve from pain.
LEIA – So you have taught us.
TITANIA – It seems that you have had other masters. (Pause) I ́ll tell you right away what ́s on my mind, since you are my favourite daughter : I suspect Filomela.
LEIA – What do you suspect her of?
TITANIA – I suspect her of what I trust you with. I suspect her of being unfaithful to me and false. You know how close she is to Melcatec and Jacinto, Oberon ́ s servants? LEIA – Yes, but what has she done?
TITANIA – A resurrecting filter ...And other mischief...That is why I need you to do something for me.
LEIA – ( she gets up, confused, starts to exit) I ́ll run and do it.
TITANIA – Wait, you still don ́t know what it is I want.
LEIA – Once I ́ve done it, I shall know.
TITANIA - ( waves for her to sit down again) Dawn has just broke. Darkness has cleared, but not the morning mist. Later, tonight, the moon will be but a narrow white tongue, a nail, narrow and lightless. You will lure Oberon into the woods and when you get there, this is what you will do, this and nothing else : you will offer him the cup into which you have poured this filter, and with sweet laughing eyes, but quite provocative, you will step away from him, counting exactly three steps and then you will undress and take off your sandals. Look at his eyes, so that he won ́t be able to see anything else. Make sure that he will drink the filter while looking into your eyes. Then you run towards the cliffs and don ́t forget to laugh while you run very gracefully. (She simulates the gestures of the running and laughing nymph) This is what you will do. It will be Oberon ́s doom, for he is unable to escape the combination of running and laughing in a naked nymph. I shall be waiting in the grotto of the Old Nympheo, near the furthest pillar, and I shall take care of the rest. You run to the cliff, where it at its highest and pointiest, and give out loud laughter and I...
LEIA – What do you intend to do, Madam?
TITANIA - Oh, favourite daughter! Sunshine of all my kingdoms! Oberon is hurting. He hunts my nymphs, he does not care about government affairs, he exhausts my treasury, he disobeys my physician, he corrupts my princes and then he weeps, and says he is sorry, in my arms. He destroys fields and herds, he sets them on fire, he unleashes the winds, he subverts the courses of our sorry rivers, he poisons the clear water of fountains, his sudden fits of wrath shuffle the natural cycle of seasons...And then he weeps, and says he is sorry, in my arms...He is his own prey, a martyr to his own virile and expansionistic humours... Don ́t you see that we are doing him a favour, by luring him, laughing, into the abyss?
(Enters OBERON , his head covered in bandages, leaning on ALTINA ; LEIA bows to him, TITANIA turns his back to him).
LEIA – But...if he falls...he will die.
TITANIA – Here is the filter that you will give him to drink before the chase...Its effect is quite sudden, a sort of dizziness, of blindness...
LEIA – What kind of filter is this, that blinds whoever takes it?
TITANIA – It ́s the kind of blindness that makes things glow...And see what one has never seen before...You will give it to him as if it were a liqueur, while you strip of your tunic. And looking at you Oberon will see, under the empire of this filter, a cloud of a very bright light and he will hear, as if coming from the hereafter, your clear laughter,
such as an echo, and he will want to reach out for you as the nearsighted will tentatively reach out his hand and feel the shadows...
LEIA – Shall I...jump into the abyss?
TITANIA –No, once he falls, you will run back to the woods.
LEIA – I cannot.
TITANIA – Then stay put, I don ́t care.
LEIA – I cannot.
TITANIA – If you don ́t want to run, and you don ́t want to stay put, then I don ́t know what to tell you.
LEIA – I cannot throw Oberon off the cliff.
TITANIA – You won ́t . He ́ll do it himself.
(She pushes LEIA towards OBERON) Look, my Lord, it is Leia, how she is grown...look at her womanly body, her graceful manner...look how beautiful her eyes are...How long her lashes....you could almost sit and rest in the shade of her lashes! OBERON – (smiling) Yes, I have seen Melcatec pussyfooting about her...What goes on in the woods, with the experienced and resourceful fawn?
LEIA – Nothing, my Lord.
OBERON - My poor Altina, youth is all.
ALTINA – You are at your prime, my Lord.
OBERON – Thirty seven years...That I am. If Titania did not curse me with vain reprimands every single day...
TITANIA - (aside) Vain is your vanity alone.
OBERON - ...so that I may come through that door happy and appeased and not out of favour and trembling with fear, like a man subject to permanent scrutiny and trial... TITANIA – That door should lead out, and never in.
OBERON - ...if only she would not torment me with endless rules and edicts that turn this house into a labyrinth of traps...
TITANIA – Impotent traps, so far.
OBERON – In every corner of her palace is one forced to break her commands, or his own ribs. If she would not start rumours about me...if she did not think of me as the source of every evil in the world...
TITANIA – And they are legion.
OBERON – How could we avoid being perfectly happy?
TITANIA – If you were not Oberon, and I not Titania.
OBERON – Have you forgotten Hypander, so soon? In the woods, during my siesta, you and him doing the zambolizambola, the trembling tremor? And Metric, the fawn, with whom you had several romantic rendez-vous? And Fruitful, the shepherd? Have you forgotten?
TITANIA – Who cares?
OBERON – And all my children turned against me!
TITANIA – Well, I did not turned them!
OBERON - ( to himself, toward the exit)
Word, say what I cannot
Form the substance in my breast Love is running lose in the world And it is fierce, forward and ugly.
TITANIA - ( toward the opposite exit) Love...love...love...
Word put to so many evil uses
He who speaks and speaks of love Wants but to... philosophise.
THE SHEPHERD ́S SONG
I love Madamela, Madanela, Filolena, Mafidela,
Whom do I love? It is Madalena It is Filobela, Falabena
No, it ́s Filomena!
I love the love I feel for
Madalila, Falabela, Filolila, Madabela, It ́s ...Filomela I love!
I was weeping for Madalena
Who was wooing Honesto
In the fatal wood I saw Filomela
A lightning struck from the sky
That opened wide my eye
By Jove, I cry
It is she I love, not Madalena!
I know whom I love : it ́s Filomena!
OBERON - (seeing SIMPLÓRIO)-
shepherd! Tere ́s a happy life! Playing the flute, rhyming about, milking the cow...There, I ́ll be a shepherd!
(He follows SIMPLÓRIO, at a distance, spying. Enters HONESTO – ALTINA , trying to escape from LEIA. )
HONESTO-ALTINA- (to herself) Let us away. She comes. (She sees SIMPLÓRIO)
SIMPLÓRIO - Come here, I must speak with you!
HONESTO – Not now.
SIMPLÓRIO – What did Madalena say to you? HONESTO – Haven ́t you spoken to her? SIMPLÓRIO – Yes, I did.
HONESTO – What did she tell you she told me? SIMPLÓRIO – Nothing.
HONESTO – Well, I told you.
SIMPLÓRIO – The nothing that Madalena told me that you had told her is quite different from the nothing that you told me that you had told her.
HONESTO – Is it not nothing always the same nothing? How do they differ? SIMPLÓRIO – Your was poison, hers killed.
(Enters LEIA. HONESTO hides behind the tree)
LEIA – Did a shepherd pass through here? SIMPLÓRIO – Many shepherds passed through here.
Shepherd! There! That ́s what I ́ll be! A
LEIA – Just now?
SIMPLÓRIO – Just now, only one.
LEIA – Was he handsome, well shaped in all his limbs, with a wonderful voice? SIMPLÓRIO – I don ́t know about that. What do you want with him?
LEIA – To tell him how much I want him.
SIMPLÓRIO - (pointing to the spot where HONESTO is hidden)
I have seen no shepherd/ no shepherdess have I seen/Nor do I know if I saw wild beast, hare or king
LEIA – (finding HONESTO) What are you doing there?
HONESTO – Resting.
OBERON (aside) - Leia loves a strange shepherd....His legs are long and straight...His chest his narrow and sickly...What does she see in this youth who disguises his manly voice? And Melcatec, where is he?
SIMPLÓRIO – Such is this world, so out of order, that a man can ́t find his peace, not even hiding behind a tree. Now the nymphs chase after the shepherds, and not the other way around!
LEIA – Honesto is the best of men.
(HONESTO decides to be TITANIA`s bait and attract LEIA to the wood)
LEIA – Honesto! Wait! Don ́t run from me!
HONESTO – Now she will see. (To LEIA, softly)
LEIA – Yesterday we spoke in the wood, remember?
HONESTO – Yes, I remember.
LEIA – We spoke of Oberon ́s fate...
SIMPLÓRIO – Yes, we did.
LEIA – And of my reticence in...
HONESTO – Throw him off the cliff.
LEIA – But I could not stop thinking about you.
HONESTO – What did you think, then?
LEIA – (embarassed) I could not tell you.
HONESTO – Don ́t be coy. (Pause. Pointing to the cup) What is that?
LEIA – Nothing. A sort of liqueur.
HONESTO - (reaching for the cup) I am so thirsty...
LEIA - (pulling away) No, it is a liqueur, but it has virtues, and causes effects... HONESTO – I never knew a liqueur that did not cause effects. Give it here. LEIA – No, it cannot be!
HONESTO – I thought you wanted me.
LEIA - (hesitating) What shall I give Oberon? What will Titania do to me? (Aside) But Honesto will be mine...If only for an instant....
HONESTO – It is so hot tonight!
LEIA - Drink, it ́s yours!
(HONESTO-ALTINA turns her back on LEIA and pretends to drink the filter in one go, but she pours it in another flask. Then she gives the empty cup to LEIA. HONESTO-ALTINA gives out a cry and faints).
LEIA – Honesto! What is it? What is it that you feel? Is this the love Titania
Here I am. What do you want?
promised? What do you feel? He feels nothing. He is cold as dead.
(HONESTO –ALTINA moves. She moans. She gets up, before LEIA ́s bewildered eyes)
HONESTO – Damn! It was strong! (Cries out)
LEIA – What? What do you feel? Is it love already?
HONESTO – What the hell have you done to me?
LEIA – Nothing!
HONESTO – What did you make me drink?
LEIA – It was the filter that Titania destined to Oberon!
HONESTO – Oh, my! Oh, me! Oh, wretched me!
LEIA – You ́re telling me! What will Titania do to me?
HONESTO – Oh, my! Oh, me! Oh, wretched me!
LEIA – This is not the effect that it was supposed to cause! Are you in love with me already?
HONESTO – Look what you have done! Look at me! I am robbed! I am sacked! I am looted! Your filter turned me into a woman!
LEIA – A woman? How can that be?
HONESTO – The downy shadow over my upper lip, gone! My hair, strong and boyish, gone! All gone! Where is my manly pride? My ship of joy? My potence, my phallus? My breast have grown, instantly, look!
LEIA – How can that be!!!?
HONESTO – I run and hide my shame.
LEIA - How can this be? What have I done? Is it possible that Titania ́s plan was to turn Oberon into a woman? Strange design! What shall I do? I must look for Filomela, my sister...!
(LEIA runs out. MELCATEC enters, dragging ALTINA-HONESTO by the hair; ALTINA has her maid ́s clothes in a bundle)
(MELCATEC takes the filter away from her and throws her into the hollow tree)
ACT IV SCENE TWO
(JACINTO and FILOMELA are sleeping side by side. JACINTO wakes up and drinks the filter that ALTINA took from LEIA , and MELCATEC from ALTINA , and FILOMELA from MELCATEC).
JACINTO ́S MONOLOGUE IN THE LAKE
Whose face is this that reminds me of my own But dull and dim disguised by the surface
As a warning in a dream
That eludes all effort and remembrance
Eyes fixed on me that ask of me
As I of them : who are you? Where are you? Stay, let me keep in mine eye the line
Of your face adored, withdrawn, ensconced
Answer me, do not run from me!
Must I sing your praises so that you talk to me? Come, end the bitter soliloquy.
ACT V SCENE ONE
TITANIA (alone at the Nympheo)-
What do you want of me, doubt? Leave me to myself, controversy! Half of me cries
The other half cries out in joy Off, indecision! Away!
My revenge is a fact. Isn ́t that enough?
Let the plan be fulfilled, let the crime be done Fate has determined it so
Why do you haunt me?
It is night, now, darkness!
Leave me, scruple!
Go back to the god who sent you
Love died and I with it
Even if it weighs in my breast as a stone Even if I weep and mourn his fall
He shall die, and so shall I
What shadows are these before my eyes? Presentiment...I hear voices....
Console your disconsolate,
Love your worthless
The world lyes in mourning
For Oberon and your mother...
ACT V SCENE TWO
(Enters LEIA. She approaches the tree where ALTINA-HONESTO is. She does not see OBERON, leaning against the other side of the tree).
LEIA – Honest!
ALTINA – Who is there?
LEIA – It is Leia.
ALTINA – Go on your away, I don ́t want you. LEIA – Don ́t send me away.
OBERON – It is the nymph ́s voice...Leia...
LEIA – (holding the tree) Don ́t speak. I don ́t care if you are a king, a slave, a shepherd...A shepherdess...Chance conceives us...birth is the same all over...And your station, my station, irrelevant...The thing I love in you is higher...and mightier...
OBERON - (getting up, still hidden) I don ́t want to be a shepherd anymore! LEIA – You will be my king!
OBERON – For you, I ́ll be king.
LEIA – And without me, what will you be?
OBERON – Nothing, less than dust on my shoe.
LEIA – What will you make of me?
OBERON – A princess, a queen, a new goddess.
LEIA – And will you kiss me?
OBERON – Relentlessly.
LEIA – And you will do whatever I want...
OBERON – Without your asking.
(Enters MELCATEC , who comes to fetch OBERON – so that he stands before TITANIA when she wakes after the filter has been rubbed on her eyelids; MELCATEC sees OBERON, but not LEIA)
MELCATEC – At last I find you, sir.
OBERON – Shoo, Melcatec, I ́m busy here!
MELCATEC – Everything is going according to plan. The nymph awaits you. OBERON – What nymph, pray?
MELCATEC – Leia, by the Nympheo, asleep. Run to her.
OBERON – Leia? Are you out of your wit?
MELCATEC – She is exactly where you wanted her. Go and see.
LEIA – When did you start to want me?
OBERON – The moment I heard your voice.
LEIA – Do you like my voice?
OBERON – It is harmony itself.
LEIA – What else do you like about me?
OBERON – I have seen your eyes.
MELCATEC - (aside) Leia, here, flirting with Oberon? So is the plan of mighty Titania fulfilled by mere chance?
LEIA – What did you my eyes?
OBERON – Effect, a lot of effect.
LEIA – Go on.
OBERON – I want your hand.
(LEIA puts her hand inside the trunk of the tree, OBERON holds it)
OBERON – What ring is this?
LEIA – A friend gave it to me.
OBERON – Still on your finger?
LEIA – Out of habit, you know. You can take it out.
OBERON - (to MELCATEC ) A black stone.
MELCATEC - (aside) The ring I gave her, the pledge of my love....(to OBERON) It is Filomela ́s ring, sir, I gave it to her myself just now.
OBERON – You ...and Filomela?
MELCATEC – One must oblige a nymph, any nymph. OBERON – Than I ́ll take Leia, if you don ́t mind. MELCATEC – Whatever you command, sir. OBERON – I ́ll go to her, at the Nympheo.
(OBERON exits. LEIA goes on as if she were speaking to HONEST) MELCATEC - (taking LEIA ́s hand) What does this ring mean?
LEIA – Nothing.
MELCATEC – Talk to me about who gave it to you.
LEIA – Just a fawn.
MELCATEC – And how was he?
LEIA – Honest, what do you care about that?
MELCATEC – Honest? (to himself) I know what fawns are capable of! LEIA – It is you I want, not him.
MELCATEC – And who am I?
LEIA – Alas, I do not know it anymore!
MELCATEC – What is my name, then?
LEIA – You said you were Honest.
MELCATEC – And that I am.
LEIA – But after the effect of that potion...
MELCATEC – Nothing has changed, Leia, it was just a...
( He is referring to the one night stand with Filomela)
LEIA – Nothing has changed!? You have grown breasts! MELCATEC – Breasts?
LEIA – I saw them myself!
MELCATEC – Who are you talking to, nymph?
LEIA – To Honest, my shepherd.
MELCATEC – (pulling LEIA by the arm) Never enough! You will never be courted enough! You will always be waiting to be wooed. (Imitating LEIA) When did you start to love me? What do you like about me? Is it my eyes? My round firm breast? Is it my ankle, my incomparable ankle? You poor girl!
LEIA – Melcatec, what were you doing here? Were you spying on me? Honest, where are you?
( MELCATEC drags LEIA out)
HONESTO - (fearfully) Who is there? Is Melcatec gone already?
FILOMELA - Are you still there? ALTINA – Forever and always. FILOMELA – Give me your hand.
(FILOMELA pulls ALTINA out of the tree, unties her hands and feet)
FILOMELA – You deserve it all, for what you did to my sister. ALTINA – She wanted it, not I.
FILOMELA – Titania will hear about it.
ALTINA – You would do better to shut up.
FILOMELA - (raising her hand) How dare you?
ALTINA – I know things. I know more things than the things you know.
(FILOMELA ties ALTINA again, she gags her and throws her back into the
FILOMELA – Not in every instance, slave, are words better than mystery. Not in every instance, slave, offence meets impunity; not in every instance, slave, audacity pays . You know more things than I do? Too bad you cannot say them.
( FILOMELA exits. At the Nympheo, MELCATEC, LEIA and OBERON watch over TITANIA ́s sleep).
OBERON – How fair my Titania, asleep.
LEIA – How serene.
OBERON – Not a shadow, not a wrinkle on her face. Pale, smooth, youthful. MELCATEC – (pouring a drop of the potion on his finger and approaching TITANIA) Come closer, king, let us solve this once and for all.
OBERON - (curious) What are you doing?
LEIA - (whispers) Melcatec, no!
MELCATEC- Stand there, right before her very eyes...so that she sees you, the moment she wakes up!
(FILOMELA enters. TITANIA moves, wakes up before MELCATEC has the time to rub the filter on her eyelids. MELCATEC hides his hand behind his back).
TITANIA – Oberon, here? (To LEIA ) Run, child! Laugh! LEIA – Lady, I cannot!
TITANIA – Run that way...! Oberon will follow you! Go, child! LEIA - Lady, the filter....(looks at MELCATEC ) I don ́t have it! OBERON - (embracing TITANIA ) Wife!
TITANIA - (aside, with joy) Saved! Saved! May the gods protect him always! OBERON – Come with me. (To LEIA, MELCATEC and FILOMELA ) Let us celebrate the moment. I command this day to be a holiday. And, by way of start to our merriments, I want singing and dancing late this afternoon. And let the chestnuts bear cherries all year round!
MELCATEC - If there ́d be any...
(OBERON and TITANIA leave, hand in hand)
TITANIA – What did you do, while I was sleeping?
OBERON - Shh...I did nothing...Nothing happened...Tell me your dream. MELCATEC - (pouring the filter on the ground)
It is cold now. Dawn opens the gates
Of the East for Apollo ́s char and studs Artemis ́s twin is steadying them Apollo, hunter of calamity, orders :
Let the counting of the hours commence As for us, sisters, to our bed, in peace Let us enjoy the moment
Tomorrow, in a while or sooner still
The Queen will call us
And everything starts all over again.
JACINTO ́S SECOND MONOLOGUE IN THE LAKE END OF PLAY
Let me praise you, beloved face to face
Recollection from this another world
Where the face, my own, truly is Where worthy and whole
Palm against palm this face
And its allegory are wed anew And the voice exits