/ubu editions

The Lesser Magoo By Mac Wellman Permission kindly granted by Mac Wellman

©1996 Mac Wellman ©2002 /ubu editions Cover image: Ward Tietz, Glug, 1988. From the Roosevelt Pond series. The full series can be viewed in UbuWeb’s Contemporary section.

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/ubu editions

the lesser magoo

mac wellman




persons of the play:

Ms CURRAN, an adept and assistant of Mr CANDLE, an expert on the topic of Crowe’s Dark Space, Mr TORQUE, the new man, and replacement for Mr Bullock, who is discovered hanging in the closet and later as JOEGH BULLOCK’S GHOST, CANDLE’s wife, RUTH, and their daughter, TESSARA, at the Summer Place in Moonhat; and their guests: Mr GABRIEL PLEASURE, a literary person, Mr CANDLE PROSPER, a country-cousin of the CANDLES and former United States Senator; Mr FOSS, former Genius and mathematician, SHIMMER, who has catered the whole affair, and Aunt SYCORICA, a remote relation from the deep, interior regions of Central Asia.

THE LESSER MAGOO follows A MURDER OF CROWS, THE HYACINTH MACAW, and SECOND-HAND SMOKE and concludes the author’s CROWTET; the play was commissioned by the Bottom’s Dream Theater of Los Angeles, Jim Martin, Artistic Director.


if you believed in me. 5 . if you believed in me. Without your love. — Billy Rose. just as phony as it can be But it wouldn’t be make-believe. it’s a melody played In a penny arcade. sailing over a cardboard sea. And it’s only a canvas sky. hanging over a muslin tree. A double asterisk indicates that a later speech (not the one immediately following) begins to overlap at that point. from THE GREAT MAGOO (1932) Note: The occasional appearance of an asterisk in the middle of a speech indicatesthat the next speech begins to overlap at that point. But it wouldn’t be make-believe if you believed in me. It’s a Barnum and Bailey world. it’s only a paper moon. Without your love. But it wouldn’t be make-believe. it’s a honky-tonk parade. The overlapping speeches are all clearly marked in the text.the lesser magoo mac wellman Dear.

Pause. CURRAN What was it about my question that escaped you. Ms Curran. Curran. Torque. CANDLE Did you hear that. CURRAN You are saying you did not reply to my question because you did not understand my question? TORQUE That is what I am saying. if you don’t 6 .the lesser magoo mac wellman Scene [ bounce ]: An office in a large building where important work of an unmentionable kind is done. a poor fool named TORQUE. he did not understand? Ain’t that rich. CURRAN. CURRAN You did not answer my question. yes. TORQUE I did not answer it because I did not understand what you were asking. CANDLE’s assistant is dressing down the new man. Mister Torque.

not you. you walking flea-circus.the lesser magoo mac wellman mind my asking? CANDLE Surely the poor man is MAD. CURRAN Sir. CANDLE Doctor Raymond Bojangles Crapley Foss is a genius— you are a flaming crow’s head of mediocrity. TORQUE Gee— CANDLE No. CANDLE I did assume. TORQUE Mister Foss would not address me in such a fashion. But if I have been premature in my postrogatory celebration please accept my apologies. my dear Curran. He cackles— hides his face in his handkerchief. 7 . I must ask you to hold your reaction. Curran. you. Go on. till I have finished the rogatory phase. Mister Candle. you had concluded the rogatory phase as the poor ape is clearly on the ropes. you mildewed sock.

CURRAN “I did not understand the language of it”. How would you respond to that? TORQUE Look. sir. TORQUE I am saying I did not understand the language of it. What precisely about it did you fail to comprehend? TORQUE Pretty much all of it— from the head part all the way to the tip of its tail. What am I supposed to make of that? And this is not a mere Quine statement. CURRAN I find this incredible. perhaps I shall also announce that the statement I am in the process of just now uttering speaks for itself. it is self-evident. you were saying you did not understand my question. And also. I shall follow your tack and reply that my previous question speaks for itself. CURRAN Perhaps Mister Torque. TORQUE I believe my statement speaks for itself.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN Now Mister Torque. I don’t know what you’re getting 8 .

TORQUE I can’t believe this guy. in a language I can understand. CURRAN Why should I do that Mister Torque? After all it is you. there. CANDLE Attagirl. twisting in the catbird seat . If you want to ask me a question. is shed some light on the matter at hand.the lesser magoo mac wellman at. Susannah! Twist the old corn knife. ask me a question I can understand.. the matter of the previous question. TORQUE Could you repeat it please? CURRAN What did you say? TORQUE I said: could you repeat it 9 . For the life of me. TORQUE On what matter.. They glare at each other. CURRAN All I am trying to do. for Pete’s sake? CURRAN On the matter at hand. Mister Torque.

I have never been interviewed before in precisely this fashion.. and . well. We would like to know. cheesehead..* we’d very much like to know. Pause. you people have a lot of nerve. Mister Torque? Tell us. CURRAN Could you please repeat what you just said? TORQUE Why the hell should I? Jesus. I’m sorry. Mister Candle? 10 . TORQUE lowers his head. Not* really. Could you please repeat what you just said? CANDLE No. during interviews of this kind? Pause. wouldn’t we. It’s just that I. really. CURRAN How have you been interviewed then. you ask me. CANDLE Do you always behave in such a peremptory fashion. Do you? TORQUE Sorry.the lesser magoo mac wellman please? CURRAN and CANDLE consult. It’s just.

All this badgering and question-begging . don’t you see? It is 11 . CURRAN Go on.. CURRAN What is it. Where I come from interviews are conducted in such a way that . We are listening to everything you say. that . go on. I tell you I don’t understand what you are saying and all I get is this really objectionable ridicule. I mean..the lesser magoo mac wellman TORQUE Well. CURRAN stares coldly at the poor man.. Mister Torque? TORQUE All this sarcasm... TORQUE But I am.. CANDLE sobs with stifled laughter. CANDLE I cannot believe the fatuous* cheesehead. usually.. oh.. TORQUE Well .. I literally .. Mister Torque. people ask me ... And I just don’t know how. how to respond. CURRAN Perhaps then you are not interested in this job. I am.. crap . I’m sorry I just don’t see the point of it. in a way that is dignified and low-key. well it baffles me..

anything.. Pause. with the caveat that I shall not ask a third. a foreign tongue. I propose asking you a second one. only you see. CURRAN Since you refuse to answer my first question. Groping helplessly for words. certainly would have answered the question.the lesser magoo mac wellman only I do not understand .. CURRAN What! CANDLE Indeed... CURRAN rolls her eyes as CANDLE whinnies. but a language at some remove from those 12 . I must confess that English is my only language and that therefore I meant no harm. Only.. CURRAN Perhaps then you are not really interested in this job. but Ms Curran please I .* Do I make myself clear? TORQUE But. I . I would say. you seemed to be speaking. What? TORQUE Yes I would say a foreign tongue.. and not only that. TORQUE It is only that I do not understand what it is I am expected to do.

Long smoke-filled pause. Mister Torque. most familiar. or back home in New Delbert whence your people originated? CANDLE Slouching in their foul turbans and pointytoed shoes. indeed. that is true. CANDLE Perhaps. Altaic. A variant of Turko-Tungusic perhaps.the lesser magoo mac wellman with which I am . I am not an unusualist. do you know what Crowe’s Dark Space is? 13 . as you complete your interview? TORQUE You have no reason to call me an unusualist.. CURRAN Sir. I would. er. eh? He laughs again CURRAN That would seem to imply an unusualist position on your part. TORQUE I would deny that charge categorically. Are you quite sure that is the stance you would like to leave us with the impression of.. I would say. either here. CURRAN You mean to say you deny categorically any association with members of the unusualist camp. yes.

cronking bagpipe. 14 . Mister Candle. owing to a random bicker at the College of St John the Stylite he had already been given the mad-dog skull cap and forced to resign in favor of Foss. Mister Candle.. I do believe that. CANDLE And there is no such thing as a “random” bicker. Quite a large egg. CURRAN Foss would never’ve stooped to such a thing. His true love was not resonance and radiance in any case. it’s the place where the One He Refused to Meet encounters the Crocodillian Mahoon and therefore lays an egg. you . School of Upper Malabar Philocubist and Macrurous Studies. CANDLE Was old Jenkins still around at that time? TORQUE No.the lesser magoo mac wellman TORQUE Sure.. you fetid. CANDLE You.. you . CURRAN And you are sure of that? TORQUE Well— that’s what I was taught at Princeton.. Mister Torque. CURRAN Actually on this* score he is correct. in fact.

tsk. Tsk. quite. if I recollect it correctly. 15 . do you know the precise location of the Bad Place? TORQUE Er. And random bickers did occur at the German Club.. CURRAN And. Lucky guess .the lesser magoo mac wellman TORQUE Yes. You cannot imagine how unnerving an experience this is. that’s what I’m saying. Torque. Come clean. Random bickers did occur.. Mister Torque. CANDLE Phooh. There is such a thing as a random bicker. only a bit of phlegm in the throat... CURRAN At the German Club quite. CURRAN Only a confirmed unusualist would hesitate at this juncture. TORQUE Er. CANDLE Poor little philobrutist . TORQUE Yes..

interior regions. I think. ha. TORQUE Er. CURRAN And what is the name of this banquet? TORQUE Er. 16 .the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN Must I repeat myself. CURRAN You think. the Madison Avenue Transcendental Beetle-dance. CANDLE He thinks. CURRAN And? Go on. I am sure of it. In the deep. sir? TORQUE The Bad Place lies deep within the Forest of Whim. CURRAN And? TORQUE And he holds sway there who stamps with a silver hoof. TORQUE And all the children of desire are raised exponentially to serve at his banquet.

. TORQUE grimaces. TORQUE Tom and Jerry Tongs— and tongue depressor. TORQUE Oh.. 17 . Is that what they call them in New Delbert? How vulgar. you mean the implements and instruments at her disposal? CURRAN Tools. “Tools”. I said. tools. CURRAN One . brightens. The word speaks for itself. TORQUE Whisk broom. TORQUE Valve trumpet.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN And what are the tools of the Lesser Magoo? TORQUE Tools? CURRAN Yes. CURRAN That’s two. CANDLE “Tom and Jerry Tongs”.

Dolt. In the unlikely event you are invited to join the firm. Cheesehead.. we refer to these as Ludovican Constrictors. Now please continue.. TORQUE Chattahoochie Star-Toothed Harrow. er... TORQUE I thought there were only twelve. tub chair .. Do you understand what I am saying? Good.. please. TORQUE Sorry. File that away for future reference. Mister Torque.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN In Chenango. Klein bottle and . Pause. 18 . CANDLE We bicker in New Style here. er. Good.. Five more. Check your manual in CD rom. fool. CURRAN That’s eight. CURRAN Go on.. CURRAN And . TORQUE Number six parting tool .

Four more. It is two things. CURRAN Eleven. not one. Hip-boots. er. Pause. Ramses Motorized Lawn Cable. Jigger-chaser. Hacksaw. You’re almost there. CURRAN And? TORQUE Er. CURRAN Fine. One of them tricky. TORQUE Ah.the lesser magoo mac wellman TORQUE Oboe. CANDLE Phooh. Plunger. Clothes tree. CURRAN Hint: there’s a trick to it. TORQUE St Louis Double-Hinged Rainbow-Roof. TORQUE I get it: The Obeah-Man Refluent Bow and Arrow. 19 . TORQUE I don’t get it.

Sir. 20 . CURRAN I’d be delighted. Mister Candle. Be quick* about it. CANDLE Dullard. Einstein fashion with knotted corners). would you like to visit the Men’s Room? TORQUE No. Hurriedly TORQUE exits. CANDLE Susannah. Both remove the handkerchiefs. Both CURRAN and CANDLE shut eyes. You have completed round one of the first cycle of Presley’s Title One Rogation Exercise. Neither one makes the slightest move for three minutes. but I would like a drink of water. would you like to stop by for dinner next Friday? We’re opening our place out by Moonhat for the summer. place handkerchiefs over eyes (i.e. CURRAN There’s a water cooler down the hall to your left. Torque.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN That is correct. Room 8.

CURRAN Five sharp. Perhaps his own. leaving bloody splotches. CURRAN I’d be delighted. Neither moves for another full minute. and quietly sits as before. He looks like he has seen a ghost. Dress is informal. TORQUE re-enters. Pause. Mister Candle. CURRAN Five sharp it is. Something terrible has happened to him. About your age. CURRAN and CANDLE exchange meaningful glances. and my daughter. he crosses the room. 21 . CANDLE looks away and smokes a cigarette. Tessara.the lesser magoo mac wellman CANDLE You’ve never met Ruth. Tremblingly. His left shoe and stocking are gone. He has vomited. As TORQUE sits trembling CURRAN quietly begins talking. soiling his shirt and jacket. I reckon. and the foot is bloody.

The voices told him to go to a far. The history of our people begins in the Malabar nightshade. he began to hear voices. do you know the story of the Marabou Man-Orchid? No reply. A man named P. Staring up to Heaven. And arrange for a billet on the next steamer bound for New Delaware. I mean. injured a foot.. He makes an odd salute with one hand. He spoke with a local carcoon and all was arranged as he desired.. 22 .the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN Torque. Hallelujah [Matter-of-factly. interior regions of it. you must listen very carefully to every word I say. CANDLE Hallelujah. The voices were followed by visions. For once upon a time. In the deep. And what is the taboo name for the flensing knife? TORQUE George. Johnston Crapley fell off his horse and like you. far place. deep in the Malabar nightshade. For every word is of the utmost importance. Now. Visions of Resonance and Radiance . CURRAN Very good.

his grandson J. Thus. He went to Germany where he studied Rotor Statistics and Upper Silesian Slide-Bar Rotation with a certain Doktor Dornier at Dusseldorf. Do you? 23 . The world and all it contained had become for him what it is we mean when we refer to the Bad Place. Later he escaped. Johnston Crapley that he had been selected for a unique spiritual mission. Clarence Jeremiah and Clarence’s sister. In 1925 his son. with a superior doodle-bug of the Herr Doktor’s design to the Yellowstone River region— which he had always wanted to see. Devastated by the forced separation from his dear sister Clarissa. the “hoodoo” or goblin land of that country. Mahoon Crapley was subsequently able to found this firm upon the soundest of principles in 1923. And in especial. She was sent to London to be secretary to Lady Ernestine Pomfret du Nouyes. Do you understand what I am saying? It is very important that you are clear about the meaning of each word. and so involuntarily separated.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN Within a short time it appeared clear to P. he only thought to make an end of it all there. Clarissa Madrasah were suspected of Philadelphian tendencies. namely the compilation and editing of the Variorum New Delaware Florilegium.

latter years.]. Do you? Are you? Fine. and make her way into the night. Years later she prepared the first complete anatomical description of the Hutchin’s goose. Finally she arranged with some Soho hoodlums to kill a black cat on the last quarter of the moon. CURRAN Meanwhile sweet Clarissa would open a pillow from time to time. 24 .the lesser magoo mac wellman TORQUE I understand. where she spent her sweet. a certain Lyell Crapley. Do you understand what I am saying? It is very important that you are clear about the meaning of each word. with only a husking pin and a corn knife. er. near the casino. the true inventor of Mergenthaler linotype and rusticated here. She married late in life to a distant uncle of Mister Candle here [He nods. her corn knife is rumored to be buried deep in the woods of my summer estate out at Moonhat. and confess her unholy passion. and place it on the doorstep of the person she intended to hoodoo— namely Lady Pomfret du Nouyes. In this way she was able to disguise herself in Indian boots. CANDLE Indeed.

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CURRAN Is that so? I wasn’t aware of that. She turns sharply back to her prey. And what is the taboo name of the flensing knife? TORQUE George, I said. George. CURRAN Just checking to see if you’re paying attention. Now, She takes a drink of water. TORQUE Er, CANDLE What is it, you moron. You CHEESEHEAD ... CURRAN Please, Mister Candle, let me get to the meat of the matter. Some thirty years later, a group of youths in black jackets were observed moving in a ring near Bug River. Some of them were smoking cigarettes. Now, presently, as we speak, all of the, the descendants of P. Johnston Crapley are now dead. So the point is how do you explain the following. Say I am in my laboratory and I stumble upon a very lovely little North Wind Camwood Ergometer. I say, it seems to have


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been left by someone. You reply, if it is such a beauty someone will surely come back for it. I respond, that makes sense, but in truth it is such a beauty I should really like to have it. You assure me that you understand my desire. I suggest that I shall wait a week, and after that time if the Camwood Ergometer still remains here unclaimed, well then the precious device shall belong to me. Where precisely is the error in my argument? TORQUE J. Mahoon Crapley’s fame did not arise from his dealings with emissaries of the Bad Place, but as a result of his subsequent work on Lower Silesian Side-Bar Rotation, and to a lesser degree, upon his treatise on the Brazilian, or “Silvery”, poodle. A rare beast ( Pudelhund Argentum). CURRAN Very Well. The closet door opens with an eerie creak. We see in the shadows a body swinging from a rope. A suicide. The MAN is dressed identically to poor Mister TORQUE. TORQUE stares, then screams once. TORQUE For the love of Christ. What’s he doing


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there? CANDLE Joegh Bullock— your predecessor. Seems to have suffered a fatal selferasure. Ha. Can you imagine? You, fool, lug the guts out of here. CURRAN Mister Candle, this is really disgusting. I feel I shall have to file a report. I had assumed we were operating under the terms of the St Cloud System for Stress Reduction, New Orleans Resonance and Monkeyhat Preadmonishment. CANDLE ignoring her You heard me, moron, move it. TORQUE lumbers up to the swinging corpse. Stares. Cuts him down with a wicked looking knife secreted in his shoe, and slowly proceeds halfway to the door. He stops. TORQUE Where? CANDLE Bugger yourself.* Phooh. CURRAN Take it down the, Mister Torque, down the hall, to the wall chute, please. TORQUE lumbers out with the corpse. Closes the glass door behind


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him. Pause. CANDLE He’ll do. She yawns. CURRAN Long day. Stands. CANDLE Remember: next Friday at my summer place. CURRAN Off Route 6? CANDLE Near the Republican landfill. CURRAN Bring a bottle of wine? CANDLE Bring a white. I have the red. Loads of red in the basement. And in the deep woods. In the deep interior regions of the woods. Both begin to pack their bags, and prepare to close the office for the day. Slow black. End of scene.


And of course. They all drift in and out of scenes. a country cousin of the CANDLES. his wife RUTH and daughter TESSARA. GABRIEL PLEASURE and CANDLE PROSPER. Senator. [Note: at some point all the characters stop whatever they are doing. and Aunt SYCORICA from Central Asia. GABRIEL PLEASURE I beg your pardon? TESSARA In the school play.the lesser magoo mac wellman Scene [ricochet ]: Late afternoon. smoking— having a good time. near the gazebo. and join together to sing Billy Rose’s “Paper Moon” (See page 3). Principle of the Act: when you’re not on. on CANDLE’s vast estate. _____ CANDLE What is the point of writing crap 29 . who serves the drinks. you’re off. These include Ms CURRAN and CANDLE himself. the literary person. TESSARA I wasn’t funny— so I got hosed. also a former U. the old philosopher FOSS. and observe the others. close to both Bug River and the deep woods adjoining. back at school. In addition: SHIMMER. The guests stroll about drinking. of a pleasant summer’s day.S.who is confined to a wheelchair and says not a word.

. Ask too many questions of the woods. and of the sacred monkshood— Ask too many questions of the bluegrass and the hay . fly. The song of our people. I forget the rest of it. She’s a lovely young girl.. the sky! Of the corn. He stops. RUTH She was to see the doctor. secrets it on his person. CANDLE PROSPER sings: Ask too many questions and you fly. Yes.the lesser magoo mac wellman like that. Notices AUNT SYCORICA’s intense stare. She was to see the doctor if it got worse. Ruth? Crumples paper and tosses it. Senator CANDLE PROSPER hums a little tune to AUNT SYCORICA who is staring at TESSARA with flaming eyes. As they drift off SHIMMER rescues the paper. Absolutely stunning. the creek. but it was our song. the wheat. fly. 30 . you might say. yes.

CURRAN Could you introduce me to your family? CANDLE They’re a pretty dull bunch. But everywhere one goes one encounters it— books and books of the stuff. Smiles and waves. there’s someone you ought to meet. He kisses her lightly on the cheek. would you? Tess? You. I dunno.. that big old. Oh. One of his epistolary novellas was written in high school French. Ruth. but don’t bother. come here. run-down Corinthian courthouse 31 . They wave. Dyed-in-the-wool unusualist. too.the lesser magoo mac wellman _____ CURRAN hands CANDLE a bottle. Anomalous Narcolepsy it was called I believe. and a pretty fair tennis player. Lives over in . Corntown.. ah . Can’t recall actually reading anything the poor fool has written. I never know how to behave at social situations. Oh.. GABRIEL PLEASURE turns at the mention of his name and trips. nearly falling. I suspect. He’s a literary person of some note. Decent enough fellow.. Mister Gabriel Pleasure. CANDLE Now go mingle.

A Minnesotan. a person of some literary standing. CURRAN Tell me. Our host hands CURRAN’s bottle over to him. In fact. I’d prefer to call it a case of Quadratic Zeeman Effect. dear. I wouldn’t call it “classical”. Mister Candle. Susannah Curran. it doesn’t really qualify as Stark Effect either.the lesser magoo mac wellman by the morgue. No.. Susan. SHIMMER brings them wine. CURRAN You don’t say? GABRIEL PLEASURE approaches. CANDLE Sorry. is what we’re dealing with classical Quadratic Stark Effect? CANDLE No.. GABRIEL PLEASURE Delighted. So the Q value is joint? CANDLE Hello. in point of fact. Pause. 32 . Gabriel. this is Susan Curran. ah . this is Gabriel Pleasure.. CURRAN Susannah ..

etc. FOSS — AUNT SYCORICA You bet I’d like to monkey with her bore-hole. Rubber and rubber trees. Amazing.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN How do you do? CANDLE Might be thought of as Q switching. FOSS — AUNT SYCORICA When the moonlight comes perhaps I’ll tell you the true tale of our people. 33 . GABRIEL PLEASURE I’m having a bad hair decade. The soft blue aura. CANDLE I beg your pardon? GABRIEL PLEASURE goes off. _____ AUNT SYCORICA That little rabbit. I’d swear she’s giving off Cerenkov radiation. The vulcanization of products.

____ CANDLE Transcaucasia? Not bloody likely. you know. Charlie. I’d like to monkey with that. She sings: In Shantung. Charlie . Pause. FOSS — AUNT SYCORICA The historical trace is persuasive. all of us. Gabriel is the sweetest man. The sharks all live on a hill. he named it. She laughs softly.. 34 . Won an Emmy. RUTH Eligible liabilities. The sharks all live on a hill. We were unusualists. In Shantung. Admiral Miraldi was the first to diagnosed the condition: The “Monocoque Money Illusion”..the lesser magoo mac wellman Not before. I should say. Yes. Ruth. The daypart morning drive picks each bid off the wall. The sharks all live on a hill.

Ha. RUTH You old lefty. Funkum. 35 . Go ask Shimmer if the gimmick fruit can be that funky. Hey. CANDLE At least she doesn’t need any character merchandising. CANDLE Her? No way. CANDLE Ha. Pause. A bean counter. Magneto-hydrodynamically speaking. RUTH Bean counters can be unusualist too. Barnacles conceal his ball of glass. Funk money is not funk art.the lesser magoo mac wellman CANDLE Walks like he’s fouled with Lepas Anatifera. Ho. Unusualist. The sensuous young! You like Curran? RUTH Where’s she from? She acts like a rabbit in a challenge box. RUTH Tessara’s a-tingle. She kisses him on the nose. Look. Don’t look at me that way.

_____ THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK shuffles 36 . Funkum. RUTH Future schlock. Fold. CANDLE Morbidezza. Folded nicely will do. Future* schlock. Mahoon. Funkum. Old old. Mahoon Mahoon. Funkum. CANDLE Optical wand. Mahoon. RUTH Morbidezza? CANDLE Indeedy do. BOTH Funkum. my dear. Funkum.the lesser magoo mac wellman CANDLE Funkum. CANDLE Optical wand. RUTH Mahoon. Mahoon. Fold. Mahoon. RUTH Bold.

I never did. The suave GABRIEL PLEASURE joins her. 37 . Pause. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Miss Curran. I took the open-jaw ticket here. He bows. Dashpot. till they dark me out in the daddy tank with Dagmar over there. Now jump cut the neon with your nerfing bar. Pause. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please help me. But she doesn’t notice anything. The half-life of my half-death doesn’t seem to read. Sniffs her wine. it’s me. CURRAN Dado. Someone else cooked the books. Deedo.the lesser magoo mac wellman up to the solitary CURRAN. Dado. Please. Deedo. This wine’s got halitosis. Hi. Now now now. I never accused those Petra’s Bulk-Handling Machine people. If someone doesn’t acknowledge me I’ll fade out and dark about till my dunlops dangle. GABRIEL PLEASURE Jiminy jiminy jump. CURRAN Dado. but only TESSARA can perceive him.

a door check kind of thing. Drastic. Like the murmur of the comb-tooth spider. First generation scare-head stuff. CURRAN How clever. Forty-five thousand tons of drop weight does not an umble make. Albeit an unusual one. It’s a half-moon do-or-die kind of thing. GABRIEL PLEASURE One could do worse. of course.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN Now now now. And I had you pegged as an unabhorrent. They engage in some friendly ribbing: CURRAN You look at me like I’m a Murjite. Gives her a look. also. GABRIEL PLEASURE That’s called Rotary Swaging. CURRAN Usual or unusual? GABRIEL PLEASURE You expect me to answer that? CURRAN ? GABRIEL PLEASURE It is. Miss Curran. and 38 .

My stick-dad is named Pellagra. CURRAN My stick-dad* is named Pellagra. GABRIEL PLEASURE My stick-dad* is named pellagra. steady state. Scaly scam. Scam. Steady state. 39 . Steady state. Steady state. Climb the side-pipes and back again. Climb the side-pipes and back again. Scam. my stick-dad* is named pellagra. All stare at them. Steady state. Scam. PELLAGRA. Pause. BOTH Pellagra. Scaly scam. CURRAN My stick-dad is named pellagra. Steady state.the lesser magoo mac wellman then bursts into song: GABRIEL PLEASURE Scam. Oh. Oh.

40 . Pause. Sadder but wiser. Sforever. _____ [Repeat X 7. [Repeat X 7. Wango. Sforever. TESSARA Sforever. Ward X is my washingmachine. Sforever. Sforever. wango is my washboard. Sforever. oh. Sforever. What a wandering whistle-stop. Pause. Sforever. Sforever. Sforever. Sforever. oh. Sforever. Sforever. Sforever.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN Stick him on! Stick him on! Stick him on! Stick him on! Stick him on! Stick him on! Stick him on! _____ [Repeat X 7.

Now his ideas undergird the whole foundation of things like Airy Disc implants. Mathematics. A deranged former genius. Avalanche Lilies. Couldn’t be put away. RUTH Are you having a good time. He elaborated the theory of Resonant and Radiant Doohickeys. Thought to be quite useless. it would be unseemly for a genius to be confined to the bughouse. _____ AUNT SYCORICA and RUTH quietly chat. 41 . Ultra-large Crude Containers. The Phantom of Philosophaster Hall. all those cheeses made from petroleum byproducts. dear? That’s Foss you were chatting with. they named him. the whole bumfoozle. Lost his poor wits. CANDLE PROSPER A wheelsucker.the lesser magoo mac wellman CANDLE looks adoringly at his daughter: Tessara. where you’re at’s a white rabbit. White alert. Heh? CANDLE I beg your pardon? What did you say? CANDLE PROSPER Heh. I said “heh”. topologically speaking. you ask me. Arrays of infinities arranged in torus-ellipsoids.

only not quite that distant. Or perhaps a tontine. AUNT SYCORICA A fascinating old gentleman. deep glacial ponds. One like him. Or something tontine-like. watches everything. 42 . We tie them to a waterlogged stump and throw him in the tombi.the lesser magoo mac wellman or : ULCC’s. no. but I’m still not too clear. Something morganatic. He’s a distant relation of ours. RUTH Do you have such things in your country? AUNT SYCORICA In Baku we tie the old. He listens to everything. AUNT SYCORICA Sounds morbid. Things like that. he was the agent of all that. The exact connection has been diagrammed for me. Rhode Island Electromagnetic Rat-tail Hinges. Only he plays his cards rather close to the chest. useless ones. RUTH No. You’d never know to look at him. with faculties gone. He misses nothing. Just like you. RUTH Did he say anything? AUNT SYCORICA I was under the impression his mind was gaga. practical down-to-earth things that give a person ballast in the community. no.

former years. RUTH ? AUNT SYCORICA Oh. She goes.the lesser magoo mac wellman A shocked pause. in his fine. what in the name of Jupiter is that? AUNT SYCORICA A collector of matchboxes. and stands patiently to one side. I only ask because he has a grip of steel when he has clasped a box of matches I show him from Baku. that Curran slut is after your husband... RUTH Come to think of it . 43 . _____ CANDLE PROSPER That old witch used to say the whole shindig is a flannel tunnel. by the way. AUNT SYCORICA I want to listen to the old Senator talk about politics. by any chance a philumenist? RUTH My word. Was this old gentleman. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK has been following him.

and more. Tess. Because it is. We do. no matter how much you indulge in chest-thumping. I was Chairman on the Subcommittee for West Virginia RadioSensitive Interversion. 44 . CANDLE PROSPER Yes. please. it is. you know. Across the board. Tessara. and Syllabicicity As you can imagine a lot of the paperwork was highly classified. The hate-mongers don’t have to be accurate. or MAPV. Had access to things. It’s all one big Boston haircut. we literally have no way of knowing what we are doing on a macro level. my dearie. within the regular confines of your personal noggin? Your own head? Well there is a reason for that. Did you know there is no way in round number terms to arrive at an adequate derivative for the Fan Choral Display? It means. things like. and not. whatever.the lesser magoo mac wellman TESSARA Did she now? How original. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please. so is Ross Perot. well. yes. Ever watch television and get the eerie feeling all that coon-track boss-out is being enacted within. I would say. That’s why polls are both nonsense. did she mean by that? THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please. Plans for the Mohawk All-Purpose Vehicle. that is right. do you suppose. I was on the Senate Committee then. Buckley’s wrong.* And what. you see.

“When I hit forty”. if you don’t mind my asking? THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please.the lesser magoo mac wellman TESSARA aside: Joegh. What are you doing? You don’t belong here. Maybe you too are becoming vacant-headed. CANDLE PROSPER Who’re you talking to. Tess*. AUNT SYCORICA That’s not what you said. Joegh. Tessara. Ha. please. GABRIEL PLEASURE I beg your pardon? AUNT SYCORICA Certain persons are most interesting at that point in their life when things 45 . What are you doing? What are you doing? The SENATOR is surprised. _____ GABRIEL PLEASURE After I hid forty I began to not worry about a whole class of things CURRAN Did I hear you correctly? Did you say: “When I hid forty”? GABRIEL PLEASURE I thought I said.

an odd duck of an name. but not too taxing. GABRIEL PLEASURE Odd duck indeed. drastically wrong. A little trivial though. the facts always fit.the lesser magoo mac wellman begin to go wrong. Radically. GABRIEL PLEASURE No. 46 . CURRAN Mister Candle says you write books in a foreign language. But that doesn’t seem to be the case with you. please. even for a has-been like me. CURRAN I don’t know what you mean. She abruptly goes. You might say I alter like the moon between phases of stuttering polysemy and plausible journalism. GABRIEL PLEASURE Pleasure. AUNT SYCORICA Pleasure. A little spade work in whatever’s current. I practice both ideology and the truth. and that’s not too taxing. Pauselet. Mister Please-her. I rather prefer investigative ideology— don’t matter what you turn up. although some of them apparently read that way. Nowadays poetry is all about line breaks.

the lesser magoo mac wellman GABRIEL PLEASURE That’s all right... and the estate is fabulous. though I don’t buy that. interior regions of the woods. His “abdication” he calls it. A good deal of it remora’d to be first growth. The third floor ballroom. GABRIEL PLEASURE I suppose after four terms in the Senate one feels entitled. as if he were royalty. CURRAN Mister Candle is an excellent host.. CURRAN Mister Pleasure. A dainty dollop. CURRAN Have you spoken with old Senator Prospero? I can’t believe a man like that would just retire. Not to mention the hair-filled ogive. a . Later on we must explore the deep. GABRIEL PLEASURE You must get Ruth to show you around the upper rooms. That Shimmer oaf is looking at Tessara as if she were a . what did you just 47 . CURRAN Yes? GABRIEL PLEASURE A succulent morsel. And the Rat Tower..

no. GABRIEL PLEASURE —? CURRAN Actually. isn’t it? GABRIEL PLEASURE My good word! [For he sees something. It’s him. Look. exactly. am I talking too loud? CURRAN No.. What you said before that. no. GABRIEL PLEASURE No. I thought you said “remora-ed” to be first growth. Would you get a load of that look on his face? 48 . I don’t buy that. Look. Pause. GABRIEL PLEASURE What’s a “remora-ed”? CURRAN Well. a remora is a type of parasitical fish. he’s gotten up out of his wheelchair. What. CURRAN What? What’s wrong? Am I talking too loud?* Sometimes I talk too loud .the lesser magoo mac wellman say? GABRIEL PLEASURE I said..

and go for a walk. I’d love to hear more about your work. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK shuffles up.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN There is something terrible in the sight of a great person in decline. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Can’t we have a conversation. and hope to make quite a splash with our little show at midnight. I’m very delighted with the company. Let’s get another drink. there’s Shimmer. be a good boy. SHIMMER Beg your pardon. bigosh. They’ve been drinking like bloody fishes. 49 . sir? There’s no question of that. I’ll just go and fetch us two more glasses of wine. Susannah? But she can’t hear him. That’s it. GABRIEL PLEASURE I wouldn’t know. and make sure everyone gets a little tight. I guess it’s because I’m dead. isn’t it? _____ CANDLE Shimmer. in the third floor ballroom. sir. As he goes off. Oh.

I rather prefer: Why does a hearse horse snicker Hauling a lawyer away? CANDLE I thought you were with Sycorica and poor old Foss. He’s the one responsible for that turkey at the Rep last year. why can’t the theatre leave us lawyers alone. Ramses Inflated.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN joining them: What show was that. and be done with it? CANDLE A successful lawsuit is one worn by a policeman. A short industrial entitled “New Delaware’s Upper Peninsula and the Development of Post-Lurid Nonself Hedges. GABRIEL PLEASURE He appears to have gotten up and rusticated himself somewhere else. Directed by Nigel Duff-Whippet. Mister Candle? CANDLE The video display I’ve prepared— with the aid of the folks over in Marketing and NonInvasive Lowball Sites. Fart jokes in fat suits. CANDLE PROSPER also joining: Morally. as the Princess of Leeks and Scallions. a perfectly dreadful show.” Tessara appears in a brief cameo. GABRIEL PLEASURE arrives on the skid: Robert Frost. 50 . I thought it unimpeachable. Only. ugh.

“It’s all hollow. quavering voice. SHIMMER Look what I found under the boxwood. Holds up a dirty. Gives glass to SHIMMER.the lesser magoo mac wellman perhaps even to the deep. would you come here? Ruth? Sees he must go to her to get her attentions. GABRIEL PLEASURE Hollow with respect to what? CANDLE PROSPER Who knows? Who cares? CANDLE Dear Ruth. Strange. or cousin Sycorica. ah. CANDLE I’ll send Tess after. Goes. “ he said. witchified name. CANDLE PROSPER Said the most remarkable things as I was talking to your Aunt. darling. It is the corn knife alluded to by CURRAN in the 51 . She goes. old tool. CANDLE — CURRAN Hold this. “Hollow” in his strange. interior regions of the adjoining forest.

But CANDLE PROSPER snatches it away. your name is Shimmer? SHIMMER Yes.the lesser magoo mac wellman first scene. to dance 52 . And not a word of this to anyone. Have a look. CANDLE PROSPER Well. CANDLE PROSPER Have a look indeed. sir. Mister Candle. The Senator looks at it carefully. CANDLE PROSPER Well. A corn knife. look. Filthy thing. Especially not my cousin. SHIMMER and GABRIEL PLEASURE What? CANDLE PROSPER You. what kind of a name is “Shimmer” anyway? SHIMMER From the Manganese Island. You take this back to the boxwood and dispose of it. North of the bay. Just as I thought. boy. GABRIEL PLEASURE Looks like a prehistoric paleolith. Do you hear? GABRIEL PLEASURE I’ve heard nothing—! Off I go.

the lesser magoo mac wellman with the princess. We hear night noises. SHIMMER It’s only that . RUTH approaches. Embarrassed. Bats.. yes. crickets. she’s so very. But without a secure power base one can do nothing. Soon it will be dark. He goes trippingly. What with the rough new 53 . but stops a few steps behind him. I always wanted a true conversation with the American people. But things have changed. It is getting dark now. CANDLE PROSPER Yes. very beautiful. _____ Pause. The Senator alone. SHIMMER moves off with the corn knife in a soiled hanky. Somehow CANDLE PROSPER feels eyes upon him. as if to watch him unobserved. CANDLE PROSPER And stop looking at my niece that way. yes. and are only now aware of the seven Japanese lanterns that are all that illuminate the fading party.. a few steps behind her is SYCORICA who has likewise positioned herself to observe both him and her. and begins quietly and slowly to talk.

I know. if you don’t spend full time stonewalling the Pentagon they’ll just roll over you. I know. ugh. Hebephrenia’s a big word. Little. and amassed in a way that shall . whoever that may be.. Corporate this. that shall bury the common man. sheer moral equivocation. So old hat. Corporate that. I dunno. Scratches his head. Drastic enfeeblement. and how far one is . well . you see. All of us. means the foolish kind of crazy. dead dreams. No real agenda any more. With cyber bats in the internet belfry.the lesser magoo mac wellman crowd in Washington. Why can’t the voters perceive that all this corporate hebephrenia is just a cover for the big grab? So much money amassed. so 54 . little dead-end dreams. Only MasonDixon border-state borderline liberalism after that. I know. flushed down into the crapper of . hopelessly liberal. I grew up with certain ideas about . Delusional... Saddled with do-gooder rhetoric.. Nightmares. But the Defense Department’s the least of it now... so what’s the use? As if you could make “politics” go away by turning off the tube. and Holy Roller misrepresentation.. My record on the important topics speaks for itself. the difference between right and wrong. I knew when Jimmy Carter’s bunch skewered McGovern that all was lost. And yes. That’s a free paraphrase. Tired of having to explain over and over again the difference .. I’m just plain tired... This all sounds so old and . in fact. But I’m told the young are tired of politics anyway. Drastic mendacity. civility. or ought to be prepared to go.. but fundamentally unmoored... Mendacity. We defanged ourselves. A little lying is just so damn tempting. Politically cuckoo. political enfeeblement and. under a fecal tideflow of dead. truth and lies. Bobby Kennedy was right: he told me. And now I’m tired of it all..

the lesser magoo mac wellman you give in. SALT I and SALT II were my god-children. Hell. I wouldn’t want to live downwind of Hanford. I don’t know.. there’re riots.. Ditto for Watergate. but. So now our schools are shot. But. I’m wearing one of these little. Hell. I told Bob Packwood to pack it all in months before the Ethics Committee requested his diaries. no. I am coming to believe.. certain . only. precisely. see. Yes. 55 . in Viet-Nam. Washington. a fundamental disconnect between the means of power and the exercise of power. I was never in politics to be loved.. political power and I am . Poor Packwood. SALT I and SALT II: who remembers that? But they should. only no one cares about proliferation anymore.. Not to be loved. anti-AIDS ribbons. and everyone moves to Sunbelt states where no one gives a damn about education or medicare or the environment. no one forced me. Hell. hell. the poor . No. and the cities fall apart. I was for the Brady bill (or something just like it) before Brady ever got drilled. I don’t know. dope. Still no one apparently can READ and the Republicans can reproduce faster than a speeding rabbit. No one forced me.. At least I was firm on that. a man of principle doesn’t do the right thing because he expects to be loved. And I’ve always supported minority rights. I know some things about George Bush that would make you truly wonder what it takes. and I’d have gone after that kook Alphonse D’Amato at every juncture. Real. No one ever accused me of waffling on that. I mean how for instance no one in the minority caucuses ever bothers to say a simple “thank you”. because something like three trillion dollars has gone and been dumped into that filthy abattoir. it gets to you. there is.

.the lesser magoo mac wellman . But. speeches like the kind Cuomo . Nader. Cuomo bumps. the other side. welfare reform and so on. taxes. bumps. one of my kids is working with Ralph Nader. in a sense abdicated also.. And Senator Bill Bradley. I mean. All down the line. well. desperately real issues. in my time . he was defeated and I’ve resigned. Paul Simon bumps. a criminal redistribution of wealth 56 .. who now determine the agenda: crime (yawn). things will turn around. is not fighting the good fight... And he has . and anyway I never gave those really fabulous speeches. Still: Bradley bumps.. that ass.. that. I stood for something . Issues that have been redescribed by those who wish to do nothing whatsoever about their true causes: poverty. hey. All non issues because they all amount to grotesque versions of real.. I mean.. Because I I don’t I don’t want only to fight the good fight I want to win.. Do you suppose they’ll miss me when I’m gone? Don’t get me wrong. But But It is them. You know what so mattered.. bumps. and what has so totally eluded everyone on what used to be called “the left”. but fighting the good fight on a ground of our own choosing. And now Senator Candle Prosper bumps. he was a celeb before his ingestion into the culture of politics.

more poverty and bad schools. Thank you. People want term limits. Thank you. AUNT SYCORICA yelling To live in mankind is far more than to live in a name.. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you! Thank you very much. Minnesota! Thank you very much. 20. up the social hierarchy. doesn’t it? He bows a courtly bow.. Hello. Maybe if people get a real taste of what the right wing has in store for them.” Kinda says it all. Thank you. I’m with Bill Bradley and Paul Simon. Thank you.. Thank you. That’s it. That’s all there is to it. 57 . Thank you very much. Want to hear something funny? Whips out a bit of newsprint. Thank you. Thank you.000 strong. Thank you. That’s it. Thank You. His opening remarks as transcribed by the Federal News Service: “Thank you. Thank you.the lesser magoo mac wellman vertically. Thank you. And so I’m abdicating. Thank you so much. So I’ve had enough. “Thank you. Thank you. Wow. the largest crowd of his whole campaign. let’em have term limits. A gesture of futility. These are Bill Clinton’s remarks in Minnesota just before the election.

Lala Mehmet Pasha. After his return to the capital it was decided that he should remain the next year in the capital and lead the war on two fronts.the lesser magoo mac wellman Both turn suddenly to face her. however. CANDLE PROSPER Afraid I don’t follow what you’re driving at? 58 . SYCORICA smiles. He was buried near the turbe of Sokullu Pasha. He had already put up his tents in Ushkudar. he was seized with an apoplexy and died three days later (23rd of May 1606). Accordingly. changed his mind. His weak heart and lack of steadfastness betrayed him. Pause. the latter was ordered to take command of the army against Persia. in keeping with the wishes of the Kapudan Pasha Derwish who was intriguing against Lala Mehmet. RUTH Sycorica. when overcome by sorrow because of the frustration of his plans. and in November of that year he crowned his vassal the Hungarian Bocskay as King of Hungar y. _____ AUNT SYCORICA Senator Prosper. The young Sultan. I almost leaped out of my skin. In the Christian year 1605 Estergom was taken by the Grand Vizier.

Feel fear. I never repeat myself. CANDLE PROSPER This is what passes for conversation then? AUNT SYCORICA Kind sir. look around you and quail. in my own lifetime. AUNT SYCORICA Look very hard at yourself.the lesser magoo mac wellman AUNT SYCORICA I never repeat myself. CANDLE PROSPER I said it is all about the insolence of big money. CANDLE PROSPER Okay. people 59 . It is all about the sheer insolence of big money. Tremble. AUNT SYCORICA I said. CANDLE PROSPER It is all about the sheer insolence of big money. Pause. CANDLE PROSPER —? AUNT SYCORICA In my country. AUNT SYCORICA Look at yourself.

RUTH looks wildly around herself: What has happened to everyone? RUTH Where is Shimmer? Where is he? Her husband emerges from the shadows. hey. philo. She stalks back in the direction of the house. philo. just in order to escape responsibility. nonny-nonny no. CANDLE PROSPER Alihu Ahkbar.. She spits. I’m having a bad hair decade.. philo. and I can’t find Foss. _____ GABRIEL PLEASURE Hullo. looking somewhat shaken. CANDLE Everyone is acting so strangely. 60 . He bows low. phlum. lum.the lesser magoo mac wellman pretended to be MAD . Phililero. lero.. mind you.. Turning away rapidly. Sycorax. you . hey. insane. RUTH Miss Curran followed Tessara too. Kewpie.

static dead. static tube. CANDLE ? GABRIEL PLEASURE I mean your nose. static tube. static tube. static field. you grinning ninny? GABRIEL PLEASURE Your name. He sings: I want to be a static tube. static tube. Oh. static tube.* static tube. BOTH MEN I want to be a static head. static tube. static head. static field. I want to be a static tube 61 . static equilibrium. Oh. GABRIEL PLEASURE Static tube. CANDLE What are you looking at. Off a bit CANDLE PROSPER hears and ambles over. want to be a static tube. I want to be a static tube. CANDLE PROSPER Oh.the lesser magoo mac wellman GABRIEL PLEASURE looms up grinning madly. My word.

see. CANDLE PROSPER That seagreen parrot fish cousin of yours has pursued her paranoid epicycloids back to the Rat Tower of the old manse. CANDLE PROSPER At the static moment of static* equilibrium. Shimmer. SHIMMER Mrs Candle. GABRIEL PLEASURE Of static no delivery. GABRIEL PLEASURE Of static no delivery. gleaming. RUTH I’m tired of being solely wifely. I have had the most 62 . All enjoy the moment. CANDLE Ruth.the lesser magoo mac wellman of static no delivery. make sure she doesn’t break something breakable. He appears from the darkness. I want a drink. GABRIEL PLEASURE Of static equilibrium. she’s on the widow’s walk gleaming. CANDLE PROSPER Of static no delivery.

. you see. 63 . and this is that thought . it was as I was flailing about in the boxwood. It’s nice to be so drunk on nothing in particular. RUTH Shimmer. bony* fish. is the drink? I’ve quite suddenly developed the thirst of Mahomet. please. CANDLE PROSPER Bony. GABRIEL PLEASURE Bony. bony. A thought came to me. SHIMMER People are so happy. All true problems are problems posing as problems. I praise the wigwag man. bony. So happy.. RUTH Where. I praise all those who wild amid those wigwag cats.the lesser magoo mac wellman extraordinary experience. is there more champagne? GABRIEL PLEASURE I praise the wild alfalfa. bony* fish. [Repeat X 3. yes. SHIMMER But that’s what I think. After my illumination I can see that all problems are the same.* It’s true. but not for the Lord’s truth but for a simple drink.

bony. Shimmer. bony boohoo bojum. [Repeat X 7. SHIMMER There was a Being in the boxwood and it said things in my ear. As usual. This is true. Truth is the language of a gaggle of untuned violins. He goes. SHIMMER No. Have all our guests randomly dispersed? But THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK slowly shambles up. terrible and local.the lesser magoo mac wellman GABRIEL PLEASURE Bony. 64 . BOTH MEN Oh. CANDLE Perhaps a prayer would be in order. no. Truth is both terrible and local. no. oh . Bony labyrinth.. CANDLE I’ll pass on the book of wisdom for now. bony* fish. no. no one sees him. Low level language of the strange— you’ll notice I said “strange” not “unusual”. Truth is a little thing.. no. like death and fucking. RUTH Scattered according to Glitter’s Rule.

I’m so desperate. will bring about a general reconcilatio. however.the lesser magoo mac wellman Shimmer. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please. CANDLE PROSPER Our poor Sciatica has turned into an Halloween masque. Look at her up there. Please help me. All look. Pause. CANDLE Him? Not that lad. CANDLE You know how you get. The flashlight emphasizes the fearful symmetry in her facial structure. CANDLE Damn! I want to get on with the viewing. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please.. RUTH Rest assured I have no intention of getting that way now. _____ 65 . Please help me. RUTH All I want is a silly little drink. anyway .. He’s suffering from a botched effort at an idea.

on synchronized pogo sticks. They sing: Bowery. flatter. Siftable. rubber tree. [Repeat X 3. Triggery. SHIMMER follows. Rubber. platter [Repeat X 7.the lesser magoo mac wellman CANDLE PROSPER and GABRIEL PLEASURE appear. Thriftily. Niftily. fatter. clatter. natter. towery. [Repeat X 3. batter. They sing: Wiggery. Shiftily. They are singing in unison: Rubber. rubber. dowery. rubber. Liftable. lowery. showery. glowery. 66 . flowery. patter. chatter. Shiftable. Piggery. Attar.

Or mayhap I am mad. RUTH Why are they reciting all those meaningless behavitives? CANDLE What on earth do you think I’m referring to? Seriously. darling. Shimmer. CANDLE After witnessing this I believe I shall swoon. spatter. merely jaundiced. Retreats past THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK into the forest. do you think I am mad?.the lesser magoo mac wellman shatter. alert them to the viewing of the film. Third floor ballroom. _____ [Repeat X 7. My word. But SHIMMER looks dazed. RUTH No. CANDLE Think I need a drink. can we perhaps assemble our scattered guests? Yes. Oh. Suddenly all our guests begin to look suspiciously unusualist. What is this? 67 . splatter. yatter. I dunno. In twenty minutes. and have simply done a Brodie because of a fetish with the generalized other.

. we are treated to a lovely cameo of GABRIEL PLEASURE and CANDLE PROSPER. RUTH Oh.. 68 . I do so much need someone to help me. ah. Pause. no . no . Great Toothy. Black magic is most certainly out of the question. ah.. Mrs Candle. no. While she is thinking. RUTH Let me propose a prayer to . we wander like the wind. er. socially untenable appear before me with trowel. Oh.. The Adversary. now all alone. and run the rule over all. no. perhaps . throwbacks and the... THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please. no Lord God of Hosts. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK approaches RUTH. please help me. or as a stream Singing the sonata Consomme.the lesser magoo mac wellman He goes after. [Repeat X 7. who stands there. may the semi-divine Magoo of ditherers.. serenading (whoever).. or as a stream Singing the mazurka Madrilene. please. BOTH MEN Oh we wander like the wind.

From the “hoodoo”. raged and swore. from an even more remote place. Johnston Crapley. make a snowplow of our human shoes. hullabaloo _____ Suddenly up close.. and forgive us our unusualist lapses and all this .the lesser magoo mac wellman Likewise I pray to the ghost of P. Hullabaloo. One of them wiser than the rest. This is true. lift this farce to a new dimension and hallow the brass ring of our hopes. and at the race track.. old hat . our founder and beacon. to Central Asia and Turkestan.. played cards. and one among us went off to live amongst the crows. Sir. Blackout. we see and hear the red masque of AUNT SYCORICA: Long ago our people came here. There our people quarrelled. or goblin region of the Western North American Coast. End of scene. 69 . Please. and committed outrages against visitors at the train station.. Our people cleaned airplane restrooms at night. and one of us.

with people acting so. waning. FOSS.. TESSARA Escape.. hi. She stands quietly apart. Pause. I thought I’d follow him. random. Gestures. We hear a frog plop. Then pause. so . A shallow pond at the center of the glade... Night noises. both TESSARA and FOSS. CURRAN I know. I mean . not wishing to disturb them.. CURRAN And I was curious where the two of you were going. I know.. TESSARA has followed and found the old mathematician. Believe me. likewise. It’s hard to have a conversation . for she. TESSARA Oh.the lesser magoo mac wellman Scene [carom ]: At a glade. deep in the interior region of the forest. a bright moon. has followed and found. 70 . Both laugh lightly. Now CURRAN arrives at the edge of the glade.

it’s like the. Tessara’s so pretty. Tessara’s so sweet. like.. ah... I know. And of course the. you know? The story of Tecumseh’s red stick and the rattailed hawk. Tessara’s so . at the firm.. working with Dad? CURRAN Oh. Er. Lesser Magoo? TESSARA It sounds fun. CURRAN I know. do you know what the Upper Michigan Indifference Curve is? TESSARA No. downtown. Believe me.. how do I explain? Well.. CURRAN Well.the lesser magoo mac wellman TESSARA I mean. they’re all very sweet and like. I mean. 71 . Another futile gesture. it’s not so . the tools of the.. TESSARA — CURRAN — TESSARA What’s. the old open the kimono. ah. what’s it really like.

That’s really neat. Slightly awkward pause. It’s like we humans can withstand something like levels of 30 psi. indeed. CURRAN Who did? TESSARA Mister Foss. Drop the other shoe syndrome. But anything over 5 psi can cause burst eardrums and hemorrhaging. CURRAN Pacers and speeders do best.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN Overpressures. hopefully in subcritical states. CURRAN Why doesn’t he come out? 72 . there? Yes. TESSARA Wow. Can’t you see him. All hypothetical. I didn’t know that. you know. FOSS is standing off in the brush. But then I suppose that’s obvious. We can only make out his legs. The rest is hidden. of course. you know. And some buried transuranics. TESSARA He said the most amazing things to me.

That’s it. Looks. TESSARA You seem quite serene to me. CURRAN lights a cigarette. Why. Yes. And . TESSARA Do you like my parents? They like you. You can ask him if you like.. TESSARA Why did you follow us out here? Is there something you wanted to talk about? 73 . What’s your first name? Pause.. er. It’s just that right now I’m not so sure of a lot of things. Susannah Lydia. it’s Lydia. CURRAN I think I do. I do. Yes. CURRAN I thought I heard people calling you Susannah? CURRAN That too. CURRAN I think I’ll pass. CURRAN Why. Pause. and I guess it shows.the lesser magoo mac wellman TESSARA I don’t know.

I’m in a funny state. Pause. I mean— CURRAN I meant emotionally. 74 .* I’ve done it.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN No. Do you think it’s possible to see someone who is dead? I do. CURRAN With your heart maybe. I mean. CURRAN People who make a ruckus can’t stand it if people don’t want any part. TESSARA Guess I’m asking all the wrong* questions. CURRAN No. Loss is a thing that can be capped. I wasn’t trying to make a creepy and sentimental metaphor. No. No. And . TESSARA You can say that again. It’s me. They always do. I don’t really know. It’s me. No.. TESSARA No. I don’t do well at parties.. TESSARA I suppose the others will hunt us down before long. No. No.

like. Death sees far but is deaf. As if we had. I mean. When you lose a sock in the washing machine? It’s matter becoming spirit. Taratantara. Taratantara. how can you relate to a dead person? CURRAN Go figure. Both pause. Both 75 . TESSARA Taratantara. Pause. CURRAN I don’t think you have anything to worry about for quite some time. Death is a black camel that kneels once at every man’s door. TESSARA It’s quite real: there is a person who is very dead. anything in common.. CURRAN is a bit puzzled by this dark turn of the conversation.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN I didn’t mean to . CURRAN You’ve got a funny sense of humor Tessara. like. TESSARA I don’t want to die. TESSARA Death is always looking down at us. And that person comes around and tries to talk to me..

CURRAN Who does? Jeez. TESSARA Once you know I came out here. wearing each other’s clothes 76 . Pause. Why do you ask? TESSARA I don’t like to be unsure of myself. well not here exactly. they’ve got the best jukebox in there. and. and they were like. appears down left. act so cruel and like. my absolute fave. They stand observing the young women. Why do you think people don’t like each other and like. totally random? CURRAN Because we don’t know any better I guess. like one day I caught my folks dancing around in the woods here. I don’t know. the Moonhat Diner. Pause. Silently he gestures and CANDLE PROSPER joins him in the nettles. it was over the rise of the hill there where Route Six divides the forest just south of the diner. only they had brought some furniture all the way from the house.the lesser magoo mac wellman look at the moon. GABRIEL PLEASURE dressed as a donkey a la Bottom.

L. and the dog has ripped the mailman’s pant-leg again not to mention broken the screen door. Bean shirt and they’ve dug something up or buried something with shovels because the ground all around has been disturbed and I’m afraid to think about that because who knows what it might be? and I’m standing there thinking. and contrived? Fake. you know. fierce language. duh. do you suppose it was blood? It sure looked like blood. hey. am I. and they didn’t see me even though I was just standing there going. and I’m supposed to go to my bowling lesson and also am supposed to receive this week’s allowance and well it weirds me out Mom just standing there with what looks like clots of black blood all over her and one boob sticking out from Dad’s L. But I know if I do this for too long I’ll 77 .the lesser magoo mac wellman and yelling things in a fierce. I mean really. And like. and pretend not to notice anything strange. am I? So I run back to the house. your daughter Tessara Candle and there’s a call for Dad from people downtown at the office saying there’s been an accident and there’s something wrong with the metacarpal prepunch. it’s me. that it’s gone slack-baked. poor Woofly. hey parents. a language I couldn’t. there were these bottles of what looked like blood. like invisible? Am I. follow because it sounded both barbaric.

BURN UP AND DIE. a normal kid with a normal-type home life. — 78 . Borderline unusual. Too gross for words. buttfleaser. No cats.. CURRAN “Buttfleaser”? What’s that? TESSARA Yeah. So I don’t have thoughts like. hairy animal with my teeth. borderline unusual. a normal family and a normal dog. A true buttfleaser. I hate her. I hate Cindy Perkins so much I could splash her with kerosene and set her on fire. in fact. No one* will talk to her and. Nobody will treat her with any respect. little unusualist. just find us a car. I mean isn’t that gross?** I think that it is really gross. What you do in your dirty little mind is so nasty I don’t even want to think about it. as in “Sure. the part of it that isn’t sticky and rotten. and dragging its body up into the crabapple tree and eating part of it. I want to be like I am. so leave me alone and stop infecting me with these unusual thoughts. woman”. You snivelling. only a dog. for example— and killing this big... Me. And I won’t either because she’s an unusualist and everyone knows the fact. Sticky and rotten. like of killing this big animal— the Giant New Delaware Silver-Tipped Martin. YOU BITCH.the lesser magoo mac wellman end up an unusualist like Cindy Perkins at school and what a rinky-dink she is.

it isn’t. Poor CURRAN is stunned. THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please. Tessara. I don’t want to die. radiant because he found his beloved. no. the Show Me State. No. _____ TESSARA I want to stay open and free. Please help me. I really find it quite revolting. 79 . TESSARA I really don’t know why you insist on following me everywhere I go. Slowly the bushes part and we see THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK. really. please. and it is a . THE GHOST OF JOEGH BULLOCK Please. Don’t hate me just because I’m dead. Like Missouri. Tessara.. CURRAN I think you have a very special gift. no.the lesser magoo mac wellman CURRAN No.. She sees the displeasure on TESSARA’s face and stops short.

It isn’t you. for the love of Christ. I dunno .. and I think* you are entitled. I just* wanted to tell you how much I admire the special quality. Like I was standing at the bottom of a Julia set. No. CURRAN I just wanted to say that I think you are very special. JOEGH BULLOCK’S GHOST Please. TESSARA No... like some paranormal grasshopper. CURRAN Everyone has moments of some kind of special radiance. TESSARA Everyone treats me as if I had emerged from a one-way window. please . no. You’d never believe... I just wanted . Tessara.. no.the lesser magoo mac wellman TESSARA Oh. I know.. TESSARA Oh. shut up you pathetic creep and for 80 . I’ll go away if that’s what you want. And I don’t even know what a Julia set is. no. but there’s no sense in explaining the situation. It’s Joegh . but please . FOSS begins to move about where he stands half-hidden.. CURRAN I know. please... Please help me.

go. Miss Curran stay. JOEGH BULLOCK’S GHOST turns back and goes. TESSARA This is maddening. CANDLE PROSPER and GABRIEL PLEASURE whisper and retreat. CURRAN Okay. But there’s something you’ve got. Clairvoyance is a total bummer. You go. You’re truly sickening. JOEGH BULLOCK’S GHOST turns hopefully. Tessara. 81 . JOEGH BULLOCK’S GHOST has disappeared by time.the lesser magoo mac wellman the love of Christ just stop following me around. You go. but doesn’t dare to turn. Please. if that’s what you want. I’m odious and pathetic. please. but FOSS now has fully emerged. I suppose that something is something I want too. Pause.. if that’s what you want. it’s an unworkable dichotomy.. And I. JOEGH BULLOCK’S GHOST is likewise trudging out. CURRAN stops. JOEGH BULLOCK’S GHOST Okay. They have decided to go and collect the others. CURRAN turns back and smiles: Sorry. Susannah. Poor CURRAN is trudging out. Well. Tessara..

it is. abject. FOSS Hollow. It’s all hollow.. Don’t say things like that.the lesser magoo mac wellman There is a great radiance in his face. His left foot is a silver hoof. no. a morbid interest in you.. but the WOMEN have not noticed. doesn’t it? Ant and the grasshopper. I’m. it is true.. Experience has to count for something. She becomes very cold and hard.. She puts it out. I’m really you.. That’s it.. TESSARA But you’ve got .* It’s a terrible thing to do to yourself. no. experience. She lights a cigarette. Experience has to be worth . CURRAN Yes. well.. you know? Listen to me.. TESSARA I know. Susannah. TESSARA No. She looks down. Yes. I guess I’ve just got a . Only younger and much much prettier. Pause.. CURRAN Yeah. Ever hear 82 .

TESSARA Hey! What is this? CURRAN Tessara. something higher wants you out of here so that that thing you do may accomplish its own unusual ellipsoid. Moonhat. Not the rat poison variety. and worked as a humble shoe-salesman. So long. Now. it’s looped to a Cant-Wheel Mississippi Nonself. Consider that as you differ with your shoes. you are good girl. So that’s it. You are simply too good for these shit-eating swine. not toxin. The past is no prologue. Go figure. when in a former life I dwelled in these here parts. I am talking tocsin. Tessara. A golden circle of light appears around TESSARA. Clears his throat. The WOMEN are rapt. I am talking the tocsin wake-up alarum. Piffle-headed. There are no such things as crows neither. in our moonglow ragtime.the lesser magoo mac wellman of the Bertrand Duopoly Model? You both are in perfect duopoly mode. I guess. your selves and selflings. period. 83 . Here. Yessiree. honey. All this I learned back there up in the Rat Minaret. Because the usual just gets stranger and stranger without the tocsin of the unusual. but still too good for this rat’s-ass sewer of a Moonhat. ha! Moonhat? Bad place. The model of the unusualist heresy suggests much the same. That’s it.

Mister Pleasure.the lesser magoo mac wellman FOSS Say hello to whoever it is.. [Pointing to the sky. That. GABRIEL PLEASURE Oh . It’s okay. GABRIEL PLEASURE Back to the big house? CURRAN Yes. GABRIEL PLEASURE rushes up. back to the big house. Slowly TESSARA ascends— yelling— and disappears in the night-sky. She’s gone back to the big house.. Everything’s fine. carrying his ass’s head. Hollow. Pause. Pause. 84 . GABRIEL PLEASURE For the love of Christ what was that? FOSS What? GABRIEL PLEASURE That. All of it hollow. He has seen something in the sky. FOSS Jackass. CURRAN It’s okay.

Taratantara. A silvery pause. 85 . Taratantara. But what can he do? He goes out. Black out. It is a whisk broom. Taratantara. She kneels by the little pool. End of play. FOSS and CURRAN exchange glances. She finds an object in her pocket. Taratantara. CURRAN Taratantara. He shuffles off back into the woods. End of CROWTET. looking at the moon. Pause. Taratantara.the lesser magoo mac wellman He doesn’t know whether to believe her or not.

/ubu editions .