© 2014 by Warren John Deacon. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

         Dr. Werner Heinche (Hynney)......a vital man in his late 60's.

         Anna...................................a young trainee at the
                                                    center, 20's, dark.

         Michael......................another trainee, 20's, long hair.

         Dr. Ellen Alsing....................A professional woman, late
                                   30's, very serious and businesslike.

         Dr. George Fields..........................Professorial, 50's.

                 The action of the play takes place at an isolated
                 retreat on the Pacific coast.

                 The time is the late 60's.

                               The Setting

              Large, multipaned windows on all three walls. Outside, trees
         reflect a green caste from a wild landscape.
              Center is a low platform at the upstage end of a large,
         narrow room. A simple chair on the platform.
              A smooth, unfinished wood floor. The boards run parallel to
         the side walls, creating a slight forced perspective.
              Bright pillows are scattered around the platform. Many
         plants in large earthen pots. A low cupboard filled with cups, a
         coffee urn, small refrigerator, water cooler and a table.
              At right, a door leads to HYNNEY's bedroom which is
         dominated by a huge stone fireplace. A roll top desk piled high
         with books and papers. Some comfortable big chairs centered on an
         elaborate oriental rug. A large old Victorian bed with bedposts
         and bed curtains. A door right leads to the bathroom.
              Off left through a sliding glass door is a patio deck of
         redwood planks surrounding a circular pit and an open fire ring.

                                     ACT ONE
                        Scene 1              Morning.
                              2              Later that evening.

                                     ACT TWO
                        Scene 1              The following morning.
                              2              Several days later. Evening.


                     ACT ONE, Scene 1.


                         The stage is almost dark except for
                         a single light on the platform.

                         HYNNEY is already in place,
                         standing in silhouette facing the
                         platform, his back to the audience.

                         He steps into the light.

          I dreamed of you again just now. I wonder if I am still
          dreaming. Perhaps we all are. Then there are these times --
          a sudden clear moment when we wake.

                         Sits on the edge of the platform.

          I and some others are running through a forest chasing you.
          We are boys. I can't see our faces but our limbs are smooth
          and thin and on my chin there are no whiskers. You keep
          moving away because you have the head start. You always
          lengthen the race course, dashing away with the carrot. It's
          a race. A game. Even in my dream I know it. Young animals --
          leopards and wolves and tiger cubs -- they play this game,
          too. They run and chase each other and jump into the air and
          scuffle about. But they are only practicing for the day when
          they will chase and stalk and kill in order to live. But we
          are boys, playing this racing game as though it was real, as
          though we would someday have to use these skills. It seems
          important to play. So we play.

                         Morning light slowly appears
                         through the windows during the

          We come to a clearing, a meadow. Free and open. Stretching
          out in front of us between the rows of trees. We crash into
          the grass, running like hell onto the bright land. Some of
          the boys trip and fall, crackling like fire in the long dry
          grass, leaving little indentations, little oval hiding
          places. We rest. You lean with your back against a tree and
          your head turned down.

                         Gets up. Lights a cigarette.

          You light a cigarette. The blue smoke drifts about your head
          in the sunlight. I stand in the exact center of the meadow
          and wipe my forehead with my shirt cuff. I suddenly think,
          "Why am doing this? I can't catch you.  You were born long
          before me. You died when I was young. I can't ever be over
          here and over there too, talking to you."  So, we speak
          across the meadow with smiles and nods and hands waving in
          the air. I am here now, and if I keep walking, I will
          eventually get there. Perhaps I'll smell your smoke in the
          air, or see a tiny place made by your foot in the dark
          earth. But I will never be able to stand by your side and
          talk to you. I have continued this talking with you for so
          long. All this time, from Berlin, Vienna, through the war,
          to America. All this time, I talk to you. I talk to you. But
          you do not answer. Perhaps it is you who are dreaming? When
          will you talk to me? When will you wake from your dream?

                         A long pause. His eyes fall on the
                         chair in the corner. He walks to
                         it. Holds it firmly.

          We both must wake soon. There isn't much time. When I die,
          you'll be gone, too, in my memory. My dream ends this way:
          there is a tremendous implosion. I, standing in the grass,
          and you leaning against your tree -- we come together across
          the meadow. You are no longer over there and I no longer
          here. We become each other. My body is older. I can feel my
          whiskers. Yours is younger, your shoulders lean, not
          stooping with the years.

                         He picks up the chair and places it
                         directly in the center of the
                         platform. Faces it.

          The implosion focuses on one spot. Here where I have placed
          this chair. I know the way to awaken you!

                         He moves in on the chair, as though
                         stalking an animal.

          You see! I have got you now.

                         He laughs gleefully.

          I have got you now! You are right here, sitting in this

                         He sits in the chair. There is a
                         subtle change in his voice and
                         posture. He stares at the floor for
                         a moment, then looks up.

          You may come to regret my awakening. Now my mouth is open,
          you have given birth to my voice and there is no telling
          what will come pouring out.

                         He leaps up, dances about the

          Oh yes! You can speak. Let your words pour out. Oh, my! I am
          brilliant, am I not? I've done it. The silence is ended.
          Which one of us is dreaming now do you think? This is very
          good! This is wonderful! After talking to myself for
          decades, I finally get an answer. Michael says I have a
          compulsion about you. "Why do you have this polemic
          relationship with a dead man?" he wonders. "Your position is
          solid. Someday you will be as famous as he. Let him be." But
          I cannot.

                         Sits in the chair.

          Michael is right. It amazes me Dr. Heinche that you refuse
          to see the hold I have on you. You laugh and make jokes
          about my digging into the past. Like a pig, you say, rutting
          about in the slops. But I say you do not like the past
          because it reminds you of unpleasant things. So you have
          built your entire method on the present. Not because, as a
          scientist, you think it is better. But because, as a man, it
          is more comfortable. There are no ghosts.

                         Stands quietly. His exuberance
                         seems to drain away. Faces the

          The only ghost is you. As for my work, it must be built on
          what I know, as yours was. And what I know is this: your way
          does not work. People can lie on your couch for years and
          decades and centuries. Still they cannot change the past.
          And the future is not yet here. So what is left? Only the
          present. Of course I live in the present. So did you when
          you were alive. Because for both of us -- all of us, there
          is nothing else. I am leaning against your tree now. But I
          cannot smell the smoke from your cigarette. I cannot find
          even a trace of your footprints. I never caught up with you.
          Now, I wonder why I ever thought it was important.

                         THE LIGHTS CHANGE.

                         The morning sunlight is now quite
                         bright, revealing ANNA asleep in
                         the bed.

                         Hynney goes into the bedroom,
                         stands looking down at her.

          Good morning.

                         She opens her eyes.


          We have a session.

          My father used to come into my room at night and stand
          beside my bed. He just stood looking down at me in the dark.
          He never said anything.

          Perhaps he was afraid to sit on your bed.

          Are you?

          Things change, Anna. Fathers grow older. Daughters become
          beautiful women.

          Did you sleep?

          Very little. But I dreamed a great deal. For that, I am

                         She gets up, goes into the

          Take your pills?

          Not yet.

          Try to remember your pills, Hynney.

                         She comes out, gives him two pills
                         and some water.

          I don't need to. You remember for me.

                         Takes the pills. They get dressed.

          You didn't come to dinner last night.

          I was working on the book.

                         She glares at him.

          I can eat anytime. What are they saying about me?

          Do you care?

          These people from the schools are very important, Anna.


          A favorite word of the young. It seems to explain
          everything. I am afraid it is no longer as simple as that.
          Did you see this Dr. Alsing at dinner?

                         She nods.


          What do you think of her?

          She's okay. Why?

          She wrote a book. A very good one.

          The guy with her's a real asshole.

                         He reaches for her. Surrounds her
                         in a great bear hug and kisses her.

          My poor Anna.

          I hate all of these people coming here.

          Yah. Well, I would rather have these people sniffing around
          here than sitting in some seminar talking about me behind my

          You care what they say behind your back?

          I do.

                         MIKE, DR. FIELDS and DR. ALSING
                         appear in the patio.

          I wish I could keep you all for myself.

          This cannot be. At my age, there is only the work. This is
          the difference between you and me. I know as I am walking on
          the sand that the waves will wash away my footprints. You
          think they will stay there forever. But our existence is not
          proven because the footprints are there. It is not disproved
          because they are gone. It is time. We mustn't keep them

          I remember when you deliberately kept people waiting.

          They have come to see what I can do. I will show them.

                         He goes into the center room. Sits
                         in the chair.

          My chair here has changed everything. It can't be like it
          was. Let's have them.

                         He arranges himself. The chair
                         seems to become a throne and he a
                         king waiting for an audience with
                         his subjects. Anna goes to the
                         patio door.

          We're ready to start. 

© 2014 by Warren John Deacon. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED