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Page 139 text:
THE BITTER RooT 12I
MRS. WEs1': Don 't yer speak ter them. Remember that yer came from
the Lees of Virginia, and don't forget the family pride.
CLARA fGoz'ng ot-cr a-ml lmeeling clown by her mother, who is still looking
out the 'll,'I"7ld0l0jZ Ma. yer know I kinda hates ter go and leave you all K Both
cryj After a time IvAN fs heard comi-nag in. MRS. WEST and CLARA both jzzfmp
up. CLARA starts to put things in the trunk, and MRS. XVEST moves Cl-I'0lHlfl
the roo-nz oimlesslyj
IvAN: Yer haint packin' already, be yer?
CLARA: I guess I am fSobsj.
IVAN: Clara West! 'Yer be cryin' again! NVhen ever a man comes in
this here ol' house, some woman is cryin' Somers. I shore wouldn't cry fer
nothin'! fGocs to back wvfmlofzo and looks out, offer o short pau..se.l I wished
I never heard tell of that ol' lady Thompson.
MRS. VVEST: Ivan, if yer can't talk decent, yer can go to the barn.
IVAN: VVell, well, She's taken Clara away! l'Goes out blowing his 'nose on
CLARA: Oh, ma, he don 't want me to go!
MRS. VVEST: Yes he does, too. He's just kinda upset. fSll6 goes over and
sits down by the u'imlow.j Yer can take that ol' picture of granny to put on
the wall in yer room when yer get to Mrs. Thompson.
CLARA: I'll go get it, but first I wanta talk ter yer for just a little bit.
fGoes owncl puts lzer lzeocl on her mollzer's lopj Just think. ma. what if Mrs.
Thompson 's car hadn 't broke down by the barn, and she hadn't came in to get
someone to fix the thing fer her. She wouldn 't of seen the doctor and wouldn 't
of seen me and wanted to take me home with her. Vtlhy, ma, she might even
of gone over to John Long's. I wouldn't of ever got to ride in an automobile
and I'd never got to go to a movin' picture place like Mrs. Thompson said I
could. Ma, do you know I'll even hear one of these here bands. Ma. did you
ever hear a band?
MRS. XVEST: No. never did.
CLARA: I'l1 tell you all about it. I'll wear my gingham dress lots and
lots of places. I'll wear a sun bonnet and it will have flowers all over ever
where. I'll have stockin's that haint never been darned. lGets up onfl dances
ClfI'0lMld.1 Oh, ma l
MRS. VVEST: Clara, yer can 't have all thatg it will cost too 1nucl1. and
ever body will look at yer if yer dress up too much. Ever one will think yer
very rich. Still yer have Lee blood in yer.
CLARA KS-its flown breatlzing lzurcljz Ma. are yer goin' ter miss me? I'm
goin' to miss yer so much. IVe love each other so 1nucl1.
MRS. NVEST: Yuh, we sure are goin' ter miss yer. I kinda hates to see
CLARA: Oh, ma, I'll 11ot have to work so hard. I'1l not have ter get up
at four in the mornin' and milk some ol' cows. I'll not have to work in the
field all day long. Ma, I won't have no work hardly. floolfs at motlzerxj
Yer ain't cryin', are yer?
Page 138 text:
120 TIIE BITTER ROOT g
Playing the Game
A Play in One Act by Ray Farmer, '28,
lNote: This play is based on a real experience known to the writer.l
CLARA WEST ........ ....... D anghter of a backwoods farmer
MRS. WEST ......... .A.......,.......,.......,.., M other of CLARA
MR. VVEST ............,.. .............................. F other of CLARA
IVAN WEST .........,........ ....... N ine-year-old brother of CLARA
MRS. THOMPSON ........ ............. A rich lady from the city
CAt right of stage is a broken rw-invdoa' witlzout any curtain. A tired,
hard working woman is sitting on a broken ehair looking out the window. At
the back of the stage on the right hand side is a door. In the middle of the
stage at the back is a stove with at block of wood acting as one leg. In the left
hand corner at the back is a cupboard, which has a worn-out curtain wavering
part of it. Between the stove and the cupboard is a window, which has been
broken and has a rag put in the hole to keep the cold ont. In front of the
window on fore stage is an old table. Some worn-out oileloth is nailed on -it,
There are some old chairs aroand the table. Beside the table is an old fash-
ioned trnnk, which is open. CLARA is a stooped, sickly looking girl of about
sixteen years. She is moving around the room. patting various articles in the
trunk. When- CLARA moves fast, she breathes hard. She sobs at various times.
MRS. WEST, the wonzan at the window, sobs at tinzesj
MRS. WVEST fAfter a- long tiniej : I reckon at last yer can get ter go ter the
CLARAZ. And jest think, ma, I'll see things I never even dreampt about.
All those there things, where they keep old history things-some even come
from the time 0' Washington. Gosh, I wish yer could go with me!
MRS. WEsT: Yuh, I'd like to go, but I can't see how I cang so yer will
have ter look at everything fer me. Granny used ter tell me about all them
there things what are in those cities. VVhen I married yer pa she was mad at
me. She said I'cl have ter stay right here all the time and never see nothinl,
but I loved yer pa too much ter see anything else then. Got yer blue gingham
CLARA: Yuh, I got it in, but do you think I better wear it all the time or
just when I got ter go out?
MRS. WEST: Jest when yer go out. You'll have all them there dresses
worn out in next to no time if you haint careful, and then where'll yer be, I
wants to know?
CLARA: Oh, I'll be careful. Say, ma, what if some one up there tries to
speak to me?
Page 140 text:
122 THR B1'r'r1sR Roor
MRS. XVEST: No, eose I ain't! What ever made yer think that? Somethin'
jest got inter 1ny eye. The way yer talk a body 'd think yer was jest a-goin'
away fer what yer will get out of it. But instead yer are goin' so someday
yer will be able to help the rest of usins.
CMR. XVEST enters. The 100111671 rise and start HIO'L'I.'11g IZAVOIHIIIJ
MR. XVI-JST: IVell, I heard by Thomas as that Mrs. Tliompson got hern
car fixed ter day.
MRS. XVEST: IIuh, her an' Clara are leavin' terday fer the city.
MR. VVEST: Guess as how seens Clara is leavin' I'll have ter hire some
one else ter help in the field and I'll have ter let Ivan milk another cow and
yer Maggie ean milk one more, and I'll milk the rest.
CLARA! Maybe I'd better stay ter home and help with the work.
MRS. XVEST: Oh, yer pa was only funnin'. NVeren't yer Sam?
MR. NVEST: IVell, now fL00ln'S at wifaj Er-that is--yes, O, yes, ter be
IvAN fCOH1I'71Q in from outsirlvjz Clara, did yer think that I'll have ter
hoe all of that there ol' north field o' corn all alone, and while I'm workin'
out in the ol' hot sun, yer will be settin' on a velvet chair in some swell room
eatin' ice cream and-
MRS. IVEST: Ivan, go get some water at once.
IVAN: Aw, when I'm dead some one will holler, "Ivan, go get some
Water I Goes out.j I
CLARA: Maybe I best not go.
MRS. WEST: Hurry and get Granny 's beads, you shall have them.
CLARA: Oh, Ma! I'll hurry back KRushes off sfagchj
MRS. XVEST KWfith, at sighd: NVell fBoth sit dowrnj
MR. YVEST: I kinda hates ter see her go.
MRS. VVEST: O Samual, I hate to see her go. I'll miss her so! She always
was a great comfort. I feel like cryin' fSobs.j
MR. VVEST: Oh, Maggie.
MRS. NVESTZ She wouldn,t let me work over the hot stove and there she
been a-workin' in the old fields all day, but still she would do the e0okin'.
MR. Wnsrz She use ter do more work all day out in the field than any
man I ever saw. Now I'll have ter hire some lazy person, I speet.
MRS. WEST: But think what all this is going to mean to Clara, she will
be healthy and, I hope, happy. She will not have to do any hard work, and
maybe she will become well.
MR. NVESTS Yup, and maybe she'll live longer and feel better.
MRS. WEST: Live longer! 'What do you mean? fJumps 'ILPJ Tell me!
Tell me, I say! Answer me! flier:-ts him on Nw clufstj
MR. XVESTC Now calm yerself.
AIRS. NVEST: I'll not calm myself, I'll not set down till ye tell me what
yer mean. Tell me!
MR. WEST: Not till you sit down.
MRS. VVEST: O well now, hurry!
MR. IVEST: I always feel more comfortable when yer are calm-
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