Super Hot Raven

Homo-PoeShow

One-act comedy in two acts. 2W.

A sexy, silly spoof of Edgar Allan Poe's The Raven, Super Hot Raven and Raven II: The Ravening were written for Iron Crow Theatre Co.'s The Homo Poe Show, produced in Baltimore 2014. 



FULL TEXT

This script is being made free to read as part of The Great Release. If you enjoy reading it, please consider making a small donation. If you'd like to produce this play, send me an email to inquire about the performance rights. Thanks for reading.

CHARACTERS

POET A Stevie Nicks-esque poet in the feminist neo-Pagan bookstore tradition.

RAVEN A fix-it woman in a Baltimore Ravens jersey. Super hot. 


SUPER HOT RAVEN

(A dark and rainy night. An old Victorian that's been chopped up into apartments; we're in the turret that's been converted to a studio/1BR. It's a cluttered, gothic space with candles stuck into wine bottles and heavy tomes. A small radio plays NPR, but we don't really notice it.)

(POET enters all aflutter - she's wearing something drapey and Stevie Nicks-like. She's having a bad night. A thunder clap illuminates RAVEN, who perches near the radiator. She wears a Baltimore Ravens jersey and is super hot. She holds a heavy wrench. POET screams.)


POET 

Ahh!! What are - What do you want? What are you doing here? Who let you in here? Did you break in, is this a break-in? 


RAVEN

Hey - 


POET

I'm going to scream! I took a self-defense class!


RAVEN

Landlord.


POET

What are you holding? What? Landlord? You're not my landlord. My landlord is a Pakistani gentleman who wears sandals. 


RAVEN

No - 


POET

Even in the wintertime he wears sandals. Don't tell me you're my landlord. 


RAVEN

Your landlord - 


POET

- Is a Pakistani gentleman - 


RAVEN

- Let me in. 


POET

Why? I'm not behind on my rent. How dare he. 


(Raven lifts the wrench. She's pointing at the radiator, but Poet doesn't get it.)


POET (Continued)

Are you threatening me? Are you trying to intimidate me? I will not go quietly into that good night!


RAVEN

Look. Where I'm pointing. The radiator.


POET

Oh. You're here to fix the radiator. Of course. I'm sorry. I got a little spooked. I just made that service request so long ago, I forgot. I didn't think he was ever going to...Thank God. It's freezing in here. (Small rest.) You're going to fix the radiator?


(Raven, without shrugging exactly, communicates: "Obviously. So?")


POET (Continued)

I just...didn't know we had a lady...handy...person.


RAVEN

I'm not a lady.


POET

Oh! Forgive me, I made a gender assumption. How essentialist of me, I'm so embarrassed. 


RAVEN

I'm just kidding.


POET

Oh. 


RAVEN

Y'know, I meant..."Not a lady." Like fancy.


POET

Oh. I'm sorry. You must think I'm stupid. I'm not. I mean, I do own a couple Adam Sandler movies. 


(Raven: a slow sly grin.)


POET (Continued)

I don't know what I'm saying. I find you...I wasn't expecting to find you.


RAVEN

Sure. You come home, somebody's in your bedroom. Got a big wrench.


POET

It's not the wrench.


RAVEN

What is it?


(A little pause. Is it getting hot in here?)


POET

Um. Do you want some tea? I was going to make some. It's so cold in here, how can you even do anything. Tea?


RAVEN

Sure.


POET

Oolong? Chamomile? What are you in the mood for?


RAVEN

Surprise me.


POET

Okie-dokie. (She plugs in the electric kettle, readies the tea.) How long have you been a radiator-fixer?


RAVEN

About forty minutes.


POET

No, I mean in life. I mean, do you fix radiators often? 


(Pause.)


POET (Continued)

(Noticing her jersey.) Aren't you cold? 


(Raven shrugs.)


POET (Continued)

When I was a girl I had a cat named Whiskers who would disappear anytime it got cold, which what is the point of having a cat then? Who wants a cat in the summertime? Nobody. Don't you want to cuddle up?


RAVEN

What?


POET

With a cat. I'm just prattling. I get rattled, then I prattle. I'm a rattled prattler. Actually, I'm a poet.


RAVEN

I know.


POET

You do?


(Raven points to a sign/art project on the wall that says, "I am a poet!")


POET (Continued)

Oh. That. I was having a self-esteem... I'm a student, really. A graduate student. In poetry. Oop, here's the tea! 


(Hands her the mug. They're close.)


RAVEN

It's hot.


POET

Yeah...Oolong. I long for Oolong...


(Raven takes the tea and breaks the spell. Poet chastises herself for her stupid Oolong joke.)


POET (Continued)

So, uh...all right. Don't let me get in your way. You want me to leave, or...?


RAVEN

Why would you leave your own house?


POET

I wouldn't. Okay then. Good. I'll just, uh, busy myself with whatever while you...get down to business. 


(Raven starts working on the radiator. Poet attempts not to look at her.)


POET (Continued)

So do you...uh...know much about poetry?


RAVEN

Some.


POET

I do a lot of readings. Around town. Of my work.


RAVEN

Who's Lenore?


POET

(Maybe not a spit-take, but something with the tea.) What? How do you know about that? Have you been going through my things? How dare you. You have no right. Those are my private papers. 


RAVEN

Relax.


POET

Don't you tell me to relax.


RAVEN

Radio. (Small beat.) The radio. That was you, wasn't it? On the radio? Just now?


POET

Oh. You heard that? Of course. That was me on "Live From The Blessed Bookstore." I did a reading...I wish you hadn't heard it, actually. It didn't go well. 


RAVEN

They seemed to like it.


POET

They clap at anything. Did you...? What did you think?


RAVEN

Of your poems? I don't know.


POET

You hated them.


RAVEN

They don't rhyme.


POET

(A bit condescendingly.) Well, no. Not all poems have to rhyme. There's a style called blank verse. It's about imagery, metaphor, cadence. How it sounds.


RAVEN

I know what blank verse is.


POET

Oh. 


RAVEN

I like poems that rhyme.


POET

Everybody likes poems that rhyme. 


RAVEN

So?


POET

Well, it's a little elementary, don't you think? 


RAVEN

You think I'm stupid?


POET

No. I value the working class. (Off Raven's reaction.) I just meant, what you do. I value what you do. You don't need an education to have worth.


RAVEN

You think because I'm here to fix the radiator, I don't have an education? Or that education is the same as smart?


POET

I was born with my foot in my mouth. I just meant I don't like to label things.


RAVEN

Sure you do. You're a poet. That's all you do. My sadness is the ocean. The winter is like a cat.


POET

You're right. Forgive me. That was terrible.


RAVEN

No, it's... I shouldn't have said anything about your poems.


POET

No, please. I want to hear your thoughts. I'm so used to talking to other poets, we get boxed in. I'm interested.


RAVEN

(Small beat.) Well, they're depressing.


POET

Yes.


RAVEN

Don't you want people to like your poems?


POET

I don't write poems for people to like them. I'm participating in a feminist neo-pagan choral tradition. 


RAVEN

Oh.


POET

I'm using my poems to ameliorate my feelings.


RAVEN

Your depressed feelings.


POET

Yes.


RAVEN

So all that stuff about the Goddess...that's Lenore?


POET

No. The Goddess is Gaia, the earth mother. Lenore is my ex. 


RAVEN

She dumped you.


POET

She left me. 


RAVEN

And now you're writing poems about her.


POET

Yes.


RAVEN

Okay.


POET

(Justifying.) When she left me, I thought about killing myself, but then I thought I would probably definitely lose my security deposit. And I didn't want to give her the satisfaction. So now I go out. I go out all the time. I do readings, I attend lectures. Drum circles. Coffees. I shop. I protest the commercialization of whatever holiday it is. I do everything. When all I really want to do is curl up in the bed and not move.


RAVEN

And you write poems about her. The one who dumped you.


POET

Yes. 


RAVEN

See, that's where I think you're making a mistake. If you keep writing about her, she's never going to leave you alone.


(Beat.)


POET

That is an excellent point. I'm sorry I called you stupid.


RAVEN

Nah. Sometimes I do dumb things.


POET

Like what?


(Beat. They fall in love a little bit across the distance.)


RAVEN

Impulsive things.

(Beat. Poet gives a little accidental giggle/snort.)


POET

I wish I knew how to fix a radiator. I mean. I'm glad I don't.


RAVEN

So she dumped you. Why?


POET

She had things she wanted to do. People, really.


RAVEN

No, I mean, how? How could she dump you?


POET

Well, you know, I'm so eloquent. I'm so good with words and not insulting people. I don't always...see the other person. You know?


RAVEN

I could write a poem about Lenore. And it would be better than your poems because it would rhyme.


POET

You don't even know her.


RAVEN

I know enough. Let's see. Lenore. Is a whore. And a bore. And she snores.


POET

That's an imperfect rhyme.


RAVEN

It's an imperfect world. She's feeling sore because you showed her the door and now she's making war on whatever came before. It's causing an uproar galore. Send a message semaphore: Lenore is no more worth setting store by than a poor four-leaf clover that's missing the four. 


POET

Those are good rhymes.


RAVEN

You want to cuddle up in bed all day? What's the matter with that? You could just stay here, get warm, drink tea. Just stay in bed. Never leave. It could be relaxing.


POET

I have things to do.


RAVEN

Like what?


POET

(Small beat.) I can't think of anything while you're looking at me.


RAVEN

Am I?


POET

Who are you? 


RAVEN

I'm the one that's looking at you. Hasn't anybody ever looked at you before?


POET

So you're an angel from dyke heaven? You just go around from apartment to apartment, fixing people? Their problems? Seducing them? What do you want from me?


(Raven removes the mug of tea from Poet's hands.)


RAVEN

I fixed your radiator.


POET

I noticed.


(Raven kisses Poet. They kiss more. It's super hot. It might be the hottest kiss in this whole play so far.)


POET (Continued)

Never leave my bedroom.


RAVEN

Okay.

END.



RAVEN II: THE RAVENING

(The same apartment, sometime later. Poet brushes in cheerfully, wind in her sleeves. Raven spins around in a chair, waiting for her. This surprises Poet. Raven is pissed. Poet doesn't notice, or pretends not to.)


POET

Oh. You're here.


RAVEN

Obviously. I'm always here. That's my thing.


POET

Guess how many copies of my chapbook have sold on Amazon? Digital downloads plus real copies, the whole thing, total. Guess. Do you want to know? Fifty-six! (Poet thinks this is great.) Isn't that fabulous? And most of those people are strangers! I don't have fifty-six friends, you know what I'm saying?


RAVEN

I believe it.


POET

I'm just giddy from the success. You know, it was suggested to me that I write a follow-up essay. Sort of an inner-workings, discussing how I wrote various sections. My approach, etcetera. I mean, of course such a thing wouldn't sell nearly as well, it's strictly inside-baseball, but I think there's a certain limited audience that might appreciate some thoughts as to my process. Strike whilst the iron's hot!


RAVEN

Where were you?


POET

Out. Sometimes I go out. Sometimes I have to leave the bedroom.


RAVEN

I bet.


POET

Are you feeling neglected? I will dedicate the essay to you. 


RAVEN

Damn straight you'll dedicate the essay to me. 


POET

Isn't there a game of some sort you're supposed to be watching?


RAVEN

You were with her.


(Pause.)


RAVEN (Continued)

Thanks for not bothering to lie.


POET

I didn't tell you because I knew it would upset you.


RAVEN

Correct. I am upset. 


POET

Honey. We have a history. It is fraught, but it is real.


RAVEN

I don't care about your history. I care about your present.


POET

My present is you.


RAVEN

Damn straight.


POET

How come every time you say "damn straight" I think of Garth Brooks? 


RAVEN

Don't change the subject. 


POET

Whatever happened to him anyway?


(Pause.)


RAVEN

You think of Garth Brooks because you're ignorant. I say "damn straight" and that makes you think of George Strait, but you don't quite remember George Strait, so your mind goes to Garth Brooks. Because you know, like, three country songs in your whole life, and they're all horrible. And what happened to him was, his hair fell out and he tried to reinvent himself as something other than Garth Brooks, and he failed. And everybody stopped liking him.


(Pause.)


POET

Lenore - 


RAVEN

Lenore? I never want to hear that name again. Never. Never.


POET

Sometimes - 


RAVEN

What's the name of your chapbook?


POET

(Small beat.) The Raven.


RAVEN

That's right. Your big success. I think you owe me.


POET

It's not like I can't see her. Even if I wanted to. This is a very small community, we run in the same circles. 


RAVEN

So don't run anymore. Stay here.


POET

Locked in this room with you?


RAVEN

Yes.


POET

That is not remotely feasible.


RAVEN

Why not?


POET

I have a life! I have obligations. I am part of the world! You drive me crazy.


RAVEN

You drive me crazy.


POET

No. No, I don't. You drive me crazy. 


RAVEN

Never leave my bedroom, you said. Never.


POET

I didn't mean it literally.


RAVEN

Yes, you did. You love her so much, why don't you marry her?


POET

Are you kidding? I'd rather marry my thirteen-year-old cousin.


RAVEN

I'm the one who's looking at you!


POET

You think I don't think about you all the time? You think you're not on my brain, in my brain, every second of the day? It's unnerving how much I think of you. I feel your eyes on me every second. When I'm making breakfast, when I'm knitting a prayer shawl. Even when I'm masturbating, I'm thinking of you. Shouldn't I be thinking of someone else? If I'm with you, shouldn't I be fantasizing about somebody else? It's not normal. 


RAVEN

I think about you, too.


POET

I have to go out sometimes. I will occasionally cross paths - 


RAVEN

You don't cross paths. Call it what it is.


POET

I don't know what you think.


RAVEN

You drink coffee. You show her your poems. Whose idea was it to write this essay thing you're gonna write now? Whose idea was it?


POET

How do you know that?


RAVEN

Because I have eyes. You think I'm stupid. I'm not.


(Pause.)


POET

I'm afraid it's not healthy, what we have. Locked in here together. Always alone together. I don't know if I love you or if I'm enthralled by you. Or if that's the same thing, or different. The books say a healthy relationship needs balance. This is not balanced.


RAVEN

Do you want me to go?


POET 

(A grim laugh.) You can't go. Even if you were to walk out this room, you would still be here. I would still feel you sitting and staring. Do you get me? Do you understand? If you were to leave me, I would never write another word.


(Pause.)


RAVEN

Oh.


POET

Yes. "Oh." It's terrifying. The power you have over me is terrifying.


(Raven scratches herself or does some other non-terrifying thing.)


RAVEN

So you're not getting back together with her?


POET

No. God, no. 


RAVEN

Never?


POET

Never.


RAVEN

Never...ever?


POET

Never ever. I am with you.


(Pause.)


RAVEN

Good.


POET

We have a problem, though. I can't get you to leave the bedroom. Why don't you go out? 


RAVEN

I don't like to go out. 


POET

You can come out with me.


RAVEN

Your friends treat me like I'm your pet.


POET

My friends are jealous. Nobody really understands a relationship except the people in it. 


RAVEN

So...You want room to breathe.


POET

If that's possible.


RAVEN

You want me to go out with you.


POET

Yes, please.


RAVEN

Okay. I'll go out. And then we're going to watch an Adam Sandler movie. A real one.


POET

You don't like Punch Drunk Love?


RAVEN

It's not an Adam Sandler movie. He's in it, but that's not the same thing. 


POET

(Regarding their relationship.) I can't decide if this is a good or bad thing.


(Raven kisses her hand.)


RAVEN

Me, neither.


(Raven travels up Poet's arm. Gettin' steamy.)


POET

I just know I don't want it to end.


RAVEN

It will never end. Never.


POET

Say it again.


RAVEN

Never.


POET

Once more.


RAVEN

Never. Never. Nevermore.


(Fast blackout like a thunderclap.)

END.

© Megan Gogerty 2012