Bumbershoot – The Plays of Jeffrey James Ircink

for 20-page samples of my original plays, click on "read the rest of this entry"

“The Bed”

An introspective look at a man’s life, from infancy through death.
10-minute, drama (5M, 3W – roles may be double cast)

The Bed title pic

*Semi-Finalist, Short & Sweet/Sydney: The Biggest Little Play Festival in the World, Australia, January 2009.

“Good play.”  Alex Broun, and one of the world’s most produced ten minute playwrights and Artistic Co-ordinator of Short & Sweet/Sydney, the largest ten minute play festival in the world

“My dad died in a hospital bed in my mom and dad’s living room almost two years ago.  Rocked my boat in a way I can’t describe.  And then life goes on.  It was good for me to read this at this time of year.  Did you ever see the movie, “Little Children” ?  I can hear the voice in this play the way the narrator speaks in that movie.  I love that movie.  I feel proud of you…”
Dee Rich, Phoenix, AZ

“The Bed”

A Short-Sheeted Play (excerpt)
Jeffrey James Ircink

6405 blossom ct.
greendale, wi 53129
c: (262) 806-2808

© Copyright September 2008

Cast of CharactersMALE VO, 60+, Standard British accent
FATHER / MAN, 30 (d)
WIFE at 75
OLD MAN, 80 (d)

The BOY, TEEN BOY, MAN, MIDDLE-AGED MAN and OLD MAN represent the baby at various stages of its life. Suggested roles may be double-cast (d) if convenient.

A bedroom. Initially, the bedroom is decorated for a baby boy. As each scene shifts to coincide with the boy’s aging, the bedroom should be decorated appropriately – 2-4 items may be brought in and taken away as the actors shift scenes. Also, regardless of how the light in the room is turned on and off, it should appear as if the lights are manipulated by an actor (i.e. light switch or table lamp).

The prominent piece of furniture in the bedroom is a queen-sized bed, including bed frame, headboard and baseboard, and a nightstand with lamp. “Adagio in G Minor” plays throughout this piece.

The past, present and future.

The Bed(MUSIC CUE: “Adagio in G Minor”. A door opens and the lights are switched on by a FATHER and MOTHER entering a baby boy’s room. A queen-size bed is the prominent fixture – and a sock monkey sets on the bed. The couple has arrived home from the hospital with their new baby in tow. The couple’s movements – the requisite playing with the baby, feeding the baby, changing the baby – jive with the music and have a 50’s/Capra-esque feel, yet the characters and settings are nondescript. The FATHER exits, the music fades and the MOTHER sings a lullaby as she settles into a rocker to rock her baby to sleep. MAN VO is heard. The MAN VO is an older man’s voice – the baby grown up, reflecting on his life. His tone is contemplative. MUSIC FADES.)

“After my birth and upon my arrival home from the hospital, the first place my parents took me was to my bedroom. It was there that I was introduced to “the bed” – my bed. Not a crib like most infants – but my very own queen-sized bed. As a child, my mother taught me many things, the three most important of those being: do onto others, wear clean underwear and the importance of home décor. Notwithstanding its obvious versatility, ‘One’s bed’, my mother would quip, ‘is the most important piece of furniture in the home’.”

(The MOTHER places the baby in the bed, pulling up the guard rails on either side to keep it from falling out.)

“The bed and I were inseparable. During those early years, it was nothing more than a practical appendage of my own self – a utilitarian object in my life I neither understood nor questioned. I was simply ‘being’ with the bed.”

(The MOTHER walks to the door, turning to have one last moment with her baby, then switches off the light and exits. BEAT. MUSIC FADES UP. The door opens and a YOUNG BOY – age 7 – turns on the light and runs into the room. He has a box of animal crackers with him. The MOTHER and FATHER follow, exchanging the “baby” motif for “young boy” decor. The sock monkey sets atop a pile of other toys. The MOTHER and FATHER kiss the child on the head and exit. The YOUNG BOY jumps up and down on the bed while eating his crackers. MUSIC FADES.)

“As I matured from an infant to a young boy, I began to comprehend the significance of my mother’s wisdom.

(The MOTHER re-enters, taking the crackers away from the boy and chastising him, then exits. The YOUNG BOY constructs a tent on the bed out of sheets and blankets.)The bed was more than just a place to sleep, more than respite to cure my ills – it was my playground; my pirate ship; my fort; it was my stage and my cinema. My altar and my alter-ego. My refuge…where I commanded the world to do my bidding or hide under the covers when my bidding fell miserably short of expectations. It was my castle and I was the king.

(The lights FADE TO BLACK and a flashlight appears from within the “tent”.)

It is where I dreamt and where my dreams came true.”

(Flashlight goes off. Beat. MUSIC FADES UP. Door opens and a 18-year-old TEEN BOY enters and turns on the light – with him is a TEEN GIRL. It’s the whole teenage thing – he’s shy, she’s coy – and then suddenly they start making out on the bed. The sock monkey sits under the bed, staring out at the audience. MUSIC FADES.)

“As a young man, the bed turned from pirate ship to boudoir – a veritable playground where I was consumed with pleasures of the flesh. I took full advantage of my coming of age, delighting myself in the exploration of all the sights, sounds and smells that make a woman tick.

(Pause VO. The TEEN GIRL gets off the bed and turns the lights off. LIGHTS UP to minimum – just enough to see the couple’s silhouettes. We hear the couple writhing under the sheets. The TEEN GIRL can be seen while the TEEN BOY is under the covers between the TEEN GIRL’S legs. We hear the sound of sex.)

To eat, to sleep, to read, to work, and yes – to fuck. It is said that these are the best days of one’s life. I couldn’t have agreed more.”

(Beat. MUSIC FADES UP. A MAN in his early 30’s sits on an unmade bed – paperwork spread all over. The MAN is wearing an untucked dress shirt and tie, both unbuttoned, sleeves rolled up. The room décor has changed to reflect that of an adult. There’s a coffee cup on the nightstand. The sock monkey is lying on the floor. MUSIC FADES.)


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