Preface to Drama: An Introduction to Dramatic Literature and Theater Art

By Charles W. Cooper | Go to book overview
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SCENE II

THE SAME DAY. Tea time.

VINNIEand the RECTOR are having tea. THE REVEREND DR. LLOYDis a plump bustling man, very good-hearted and pleasant. VINNIEand DR. LLOYDhave one strong point in common: their devotion to the Church and its rituals. VINNIE's devotion comes from her natural piety; DR. LLOYD's is a little more professional.

At rise, DR. LLOYDis seated with a cup of tea. VINNIEis also seated and WHITNEYis standing next to her, stiffly erect in the manner of a boy reciting. HARLANis seated next to his mother, watching WHITNEY's performance.

WHITNEY [reciting]. "--to worship Him, to give Him thanks; to put my whole trust in Him, to call upon Him--" [He hesitates.]

VINNIE [prompting]. "--to honor--"

WHITNEY. "--to honor His Holy Name and His word and to serve Him truly all the days of my life."

DR. LLOYD. "What is thy duty toward thy neighbor?"

WHITNEY. Whew! [He pulls himself together and makes a brave start.] "My duty toward my neighbor is to love him as myself, and to do to all men as I would they should do unto me; to love, honor, and succor my father and my mother; to honor and obey--"

VINNIE. "--civil authorities."

WHITNEY. "--civil authorities. To--to--to--"

VINNIE [to DR. LLOYD]. He really knows it.

WHITNEY. I know most of the others.

DR. LLOYD. Well, he's done very well for so young a boy. I'm sure if he applies himself between now and Sunday I could hear him again-- with the others.

VINNIE. There, Whitney, you'll have to study very hard if you want Dr. Lloyd to send your name in to Bishop Potter next Sunday. I must confess to you, Dr. Lloyd, it's really my fault. Instead of hearing Whitney say his catechism this morning I let him play baseball.

WHITNEY. We won, too; 35 to 27.

DR. LLOYD. That's splendid, my child. I'm glad your side won. But winning over your catechism is a richer and fuller victory.

WHITNEY. Can I go now?

VINNIE. Yes, darling. Thank Dr. Lloyd for hearing you and run along.

WHITNEY. Thank you, Dr. Lloyd.

DR. LLOYD. Not at all, my little man.

[ WHITNEYstarts out, turns back, takes a piece of cake and runs out.]

-503-

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Preface to Drama: An Introduction to Dramatic Literature and Theater Art
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