Author Topic: coffee  (Read 1824 times)

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Offline random poet

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« on: March 22, 2010, 06:24:04 PM »
i think it would be cool to inaugurate the new section with something i am working on.

i wrote the first act of a play. it's about people drinking coffee.

it's cheesy but i had fun with the dialogue. the next acts are going to be about similar moments in time during the relationship in act 2, and breakup in act 3, i think. i have a rough outline i need to spend more time on to know what i want out of this story.

tell me what you think.


GUY: A man in his early twenties. Casual attire.
GIRL: A woman in her early twenties. Should be dressed casually and conservatively except for a plunging neckline.
PATRONS AND STAFF: Ten to fifteen random extras. This particular coffee shop has a clientele and staff composed mostly of university students.



   Small, busy independent coffee shop. All the tables are occupied and there are few empty seats left. [note: there should be people getting up and leaving, and being replaced by new customers, throughout the scene. They pantomime ordering, paying, conversing among each other. Some are reading or using laptops.] GUY is sitting alone at a small table in the farthest corner from the counter. He is writing in a thin spiral-bound notebook, his forgotten cup next to it on the table. GIRL just received her order and turns around, looking for a place to sit, looking surprised and disappointed--she had not noticed it was so crowded until now. She walks up to the GUY’s table, but hesitates, looks at the other couple of free seats for someone more inviting.

GUY (looking up from his writing, suddenly noticing there is someone standing in front of him) - Oh, hey. You can sit here if you’d like.

GIRL - Er… you look kinda busy. What are you writing?

GUY - Oh, just some bad poetry. Come, sit; I promise I won't make you read any of it.

GIRL - (with a small laugh) All right, if you promise.

   GUY resumes writing. GIRL sits uneasily, sips her coffee, casts looks around the room, looking uncomfortable. GUY mumbles to himself, nods, or crosses out passages on his notebook periodically whenever there’s a silence.

GIRL - So… what’s it about?

GUY - Beg your pardon?

GIRL - Your bad poetry. What’s it about?

GUY - Oh, right. Well, you know, heartbreak, oppression, revolution, global warming; pretty run-of-the-mill poetry subjects, really.

GIRL - I don’t think I’ve ever read poetry about the greenhouse effect.

GUY - And with a little luck, you’ll never have to.

   Another laugh from GIRL.

GIRL - Come on, it can’t be that bad.

GUY - I assure you, it can, and it is.

   A pause. GUY resumes writing. GIRL resumes looking uncomfortable.

GIRL - … So, do you always write in coffee shops?

GUY - Yes, actually I do. I can’t work at home; too many distractions.

GIRL (gesturing to the bustle around them) - And this doesn’t count as a distraction?

GUY - It’s not the same. This isn’t something I need to get involved in. The most crowded spaces are precisely the places one can be the most alone and undisturbed.

GIRL - I guess you’re right. Nobody pays attention to anyone around them.

GUY - Apathy is another of my themes, incidentally.

GIRL - Ah yes. Must go well with the revolution one.

GUY - I do enjoy a good contradiction.

   GUY, while looking up during his previous line, suddenly notices GIRL’s shirt gives a clear view of cleavage. His eyes widen, but GIRL doesn’t notice, being in mid-sip. GUY quickly drops his eyes back to his notebook and resumes writing. He takes another peek after a few seconds. This time, GIRL notices, clears her throat emphatically, and he smiles guiltily.

GUY - (With a chuckle) Ah, you caught me. Well, I’m not sorry. It was worth getting caught, and I’d do it again.

GIRL - Just how long have you been sneaking looks, then?

GUY - Actually, I had only just noticed your… exposition. I feel rather annoyed at myself, frankly, I wish I’d noticed sooner, but I was so concentrated on my notes, I hardly looked up at all. I’m a lunatic, most the time, I am sorry about that part.

GUY finally takes the time to look at GIRL carefully. GIRL’s look of annoyance fades under this scrutiny; she blushes slightly.

GUY - Well! You’re really quite pretty!


A park, with many trees and paths winding around the underbrush. There is a large fountain in the middle, surrounded by a brick walkway, and park benches. It is dusk, and the park is lit feebly by some post lamps and the setting sun. GUY and GIRL are sitting on a bench; while they are sitting in the middle, they are still about half a metre apart. They chose a poor place to sit, as the sunset is actually behind them. They don’t seem to notice. They are drinking coffee out of a thermos in plastic canteen cups.

GIRL – So you finally did call me.

GUY – I’m sorry. I’m not good at calling people. I have to say three days for me is more or less the same as immediately.

GIRL – I see. But it was four days.

GUY – Ha ha! Yes, right. Sorry.

GIRL – You know, I almost didn’t come.

GUY – That would have been in poor taste, seeing how you were the one who gave me your number in the first place.

GIRL – But who would think of inviting a girl to a park, at this hour?

GUY – I wouldn’t think of inviting you to a park at any other hour, actually. This is the best time of day. The park is empty, but the city around it is teeming. It is a tranquil place, but not yet secluded as it is at night.

GIRL – I guess that’s one way of looking at it.

They stare at the fountain’s jets in awkward silence. GIRL sighs and shivers, the wind has picked up the cool night air.

GUY – This is the part where I should be saying something insipid and trite like: “One thing about running water is that it always sounds the same, no matter where you are in the world; it always has the same white noise.”

GIRL – I guess that’s true…

GUY – Yes, but who would say that and keep a straight face? Anyway, I don’t know who came up with that cliché about water making a white noise. Anybody who knows what they’re talking about will tell you that water is a warm blue-grey sound, sweet and refreshing, always alive. To call it white is like saying it’s dead.

GIRL – How do you do that?

GUY – Do what?

GIRL – It’s like I’m hearing water for the first time. It never seemed alive to me before.

GUY – I don’t know. It always seemed obvious to me.

GIRL – Maybe you’re not such a bad poet after all.

GUY – I’m starting to think you’re the one bringing it out of me.

There is another silence, but it is no longer awkward. GIRL shivers again. She slides over to snuggle against GUY, who puts his arm around her. She sighs contentedly.

GIRL – I wouldn’t make a good muse. I would leave. I’m flighty.

GUY – That’s what muses do, I thought. Who ever heard of a muse who stays put? I consider it a productive day if I’ve had fifteen good minutes of inspiration.

GIRL – Who says I want to see you everyday?

GUY – I don’t know if it would work over the phone.

GIRL laughs quietly. She pulls her coat tighter around herself. The night birds have started singing, drowning out the noise of nearby traffic.

GIRL – It won’t work over the phone if you never call.

GUY – You’re right. Guess we’ll have to see each other every day then.

GIRL – Will I get to read anything you write?

GUY – Absolutely not. I promised I would never subject you to my bad poetry.

GIRL – What’s the point of writing it if nobody ever reads it?

GUY – It doesn’t need a point. I feel the need to write it, either way. Maybe when I’m dead they can find seven or eight pages worth publishing in an anthology somewhere.
Aujourd'hui j'ai vu un facteur joyeux.