The Iron Mountain Review Vol. XXXII

60 Robert Gipe and Higher Ground Company

MAY: It was my fault. Puzzlement all around. BETH: What are you talking about, honey? MAY: Long story. JULIA: That’s OK. You don’t have to tell it.

Opens the door and there goes Wrigley, right between their legs. JAKE: I didn’t know the dog would run! LISA: But she did. Good lord, she made a break for it. Run for the hills. JAKE: And there I was left standing, watching her go. Dismay, look back and forth at each other. LISA: She’s gone! JENNY [ Hugging LISA]: She’ll be back. She always comes back. LISA: You’ve gotta go after her. She’s so sweet. Something might happen to her. Someone might pick her up. [ Getting slightly hysterical. ] We can’t lose her. JENNY: Honey, she always comes home. JAKE: I feel kinda bad. I let her out. I didn’t know . . . . LISA’ s melt down grows while JAKE and JENNY try to calm her. JENNY: Okay. Okay. Let’s go look for her. JENNY pulls on LISA’ s hand. LISA sinks down onto the chair. LISA: I can’t . . . I can’t . . . I can’t . . . handle it . . . JENNY: Then you wait here . . . we’ll find her. We’ll bring her back. Light follows JAKE and JENNY hunting for dog. LISA remains on stage, in the dark. JAKE: So me and Jenny took off looking for that dog. First we went all over the main streets, asking around but nobody had seen Wrigley. So then we went on up into the holler. We came up on this old woman who lived out by the bridge. BETTY: Whatchall doin’ up this way? JAKE: Uh. Ma’am. We’re looking for a dog. She’s a big black lab. And she’s fast. She ran away about an hour ago now . . . BETTY: Runned away you say? Ain’t no kind of life for man or varmint livin’ in chains. JAKE: We’ll go after her . . . . JENNY: No, she’ll come home.

MAY: The Friday before she died, Momma was supposed to come see me and my brother. She got visitation the first Friday of every month from one to five o’clock. I knew she wouldn’t come, but my brother was wanting to hang on. She kept calling, “Oh, I’m coming. I’ll be there this time.” He got his hopes up, set in the front window waiting on her, waited ‘til nine that night, and she never showed up and he cried. He tried calling her, and she wouldn’t pick up. So I went and found her, and she was partying, high, as usual. And I told her, I said, “I wish you were dead.” And the next morning, she was. MAY breaks down sobbing. JULIA offers her a bowl of something to eat. JULIA: Here, honey. BETH: That isn’t your fault. MAY: Yeah, it is. BETH [ Holding MAY by the chin. ]: It isn’t. Lights down on MAY and her group. *** Scene Eleven: Lost Dog Lights up on LISA sitting at a table, crushing a pill and snorting it. Affection and communication between JENNY and LISA in this scene. All involved in pantomiming the dogs escape. The dog is invisible, but audience knows where it is by action. Trying to catch it at the door, then it is running between JAKE’ s legs, almost knocking him over. LISA: I got this dog. Got her when she was a puppy and always thought she would calm down, but she never seemed to. She was sweet enough! Just full of energy. Always on the move. You’d turn your back, and she’d be into something. She was big and fat and jet black, so we called her Blackey at first, but then she got into my purse. Tore open a whole pack of gum. Good lord, there were strings of gum everywhere. Stuck in the carpet. Stuck in her hair. She was practically blowing bubbles. After that we just called her Wrigley. So there I was, minding my own business. [ Rubs nose. ] Nowhere I had to be. Nothing to do. Then Jake comes in with Jenny.

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