Davin and Mitra, a one-act play

Davin, a poet.
Mitra, a former ballerina, now pianist.

The curtain rises.

“Knock, knock”. Mitra goes to her front door, and opens it.

Mitra: Yes? What do you want?

Davin (stunned with immediate admiration): Juliette, Juliette, here art thou!

Mitra (holding in a smile): I’m not Juliette. Please state your business.

Davin: Uh, I, Uh…

Mitra: Certainly you can do better than that.

Davin: Yes. I was, am, looking for work.

Mitra (eyeing him closely): Are you hungry?

Davin: All of me but my eyes and ears—they are feasting.

Mitra (trying to ignore this remark): I tell you what. Pull those weeds out of my garden and when you are done I’ll bring out some lunch for you.

Davin: Than you, your Highness.

Mitra slowly shuts the door and goes over to her piano to practice a melancholy Chopin etude. Davin happily begins to pull weeds, then starts creating a love poem, which he speaks aloud.

Davin: Oh, fairer far than moon or star is face of beauty seen so real, and now I pull these weeds that mar while list’ning to these notes ideal.

Mitra, disturbed by Davin’s voice, opens her window.

Mitra: Excuse me, mister would-be poet, you are disturbing my practice. Please, pull your weeds in peace.

Davin: Oh, I’m sorry, my Queen. I’ll speak no more.

Mitra: Good. But I am not your Queen.

Mitra closes her window and begins practicing again, though with a little tear in her eye.
After a minute or two Mitra hears,

Devin: “Oh Susannah, don’t you cry for me; I’m goin’ to California with a banjo on my knee!”

Mitra, at her window: Mister! No reciting poetry, no singing, no sound, nothing! Do you understand?

Davin, on his knees in the garden: When a divine goddess speaks, Davin listens and obeys.

Mitra: I think you are imagining things. Your imagination can get you into trouble. So, my odd Davin, just pull weeds, and look forward to your lunch realistically.

Davin: Is that how you play piano, realistically, with no imagination?

Mitra: That is different. It is Chopin.

Davin: Did Chopin create his music without imagination?

Mitra: You know nothing about it; you’re just a poor gardener.

Davin: I kneel corrected. Where is your whip, my beauty of beauties? Don’t I deserve some lashes?

Mitra: Oh, you are too much! Now hurry up and finish so I can give you your lunch!

Mitra again shuts the window, but is inexplicably filled with happiness. She sits at her piano and begins playing the Butterfly Etude.

Davin looks up at the window and a great light shines upon his face. A few minutes pass. There is a breathless silence.
Then Mitra opens the front door and brings out a little tray with a cup on it and one grape.

Mitra: I see you are finished. Good job. here is your lunch.

Davin: How can I thank you properly if I don’t know your name?

Mitra: My name is Mitra.

Davin: Beautiful. Perfect. I thank you with all my heart, my lovely Mitra. But, what is this?

Mitra: Black tea.

Davin: And what is this? A grape?

Mitra: Yes. I hope it is enough. After all, you said that your eyes and ears were not hungry.

Davin: What about my arms and hands? They are now growing very, very hungry.

Mitra: Oh, Davin, I told you your imagination would get you into trouble.

Davin: But Mitra, I’m not imagining anything right now!

The curtain falls.

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