The Desk or the Window:
A One Act Play by Joe Foley
Setting: A bedroom. There is a simple desk in the front right and a bed in the center; it is on the same side as the desk. The bed is positioned length wise across the room. The entrance to the room is from the rear of the stage. There is a boy in the bed and another seated at the desk. One is sleeping with arms and legs stretched out, the sheets are in twirls around him. The other is busying himself with a book, a pen and lined paper; perhaps studying. The room set up is arranged so that the audience is viewing the scene as a spectator through a large bay window.
A mother and father enter the bedroom and wait a step away from the bed.
The father takes one step towards the bed, looks at the boy sleeping and declares:
“Dis’ yellow mother butt-rider!” (The father holds his angry expression)
The mother takes one step to the bed, looks at the father and then at the rousing boy. Preachingly she speaks to the boy, “Fly up every morning and try a green light because you read boy!” (The mother holds her threatening pose.)
( The mother and father have not moved from their previous actions and the spotlight has moved from the parents to the boy in bed.)
The boy is sleepy but awake. He rolls over to his side, away from the parents and to the boy seated and preoccupied at the desk.
“Get dad fast in the frog-red garden.” He uses his thumb to point behind him.
The boy seated at the desk remains but turns slightly and looks towards the other in bed, “No talk- see.” and puts a finger to his pressed lips.
The boy in the bed begins to shift in agitation; extricating himself from the twisting sheets. He begins to get out of bed and removes himself entirely from the sheets then plants his feet on the ground at the foot of the bed. He says to himself in a sigh,
“…She do jump my play as glowing windows.”
The boy seated at the desk closes his book at this remark and stands. His pen is in his hand and he raises it vertically to press on his chin. He turns to face the window but does not yet approach
(The spotlight has moved from the boy in the bed to the one at the desk throughout his movements; it rests on him as he turns to address the audience, the window that is.)
He reflects openly and speaks thus,“Er’ bird hast ask wind if a blue want is love?”
(After a moment, the spotlight moves from the boy who is standing erect, frozen in a revery with the pen to his chin to the boy seated at the foot of the bed who has had his eyes fixed on the studious boy.)
The boy slowly rises from bed (The lights dim around the rest of the cast.) and he steps towards the window and to the side of the other boy. (He is standing at the center of the stage)
He asks, “How are we to bring, “it” at us…?” “….by heaves?” He casts his eyes and head towards the ground, “or so!” He then looks up and out the window once more and solemnly continues, “…and is, “we’ve” of “homey”, went run…” He pauses and exhales a breath, “…and saw.”
(The mother and father have now approached the window on the opposite side of the two boys and create a line of the cast. There is a long moment of pause- the spotlight is still on the center boy. After the pause the rest of the cast are presented clearly in the spotlight.)
Everyone is now looking out the window, with heads slightly tilted up, they’re backs are straight and all their faces are relaxed and expressionless. A song bird can be heard singing. In unison they say lowly: