Fee Fey Five and Some, by Tristan Jacobs

CHARACTERS

FIONA – a woman with a memory
FEE – the memory of the woman

Lights up
A woman enters.

FIONA:          I remember. I remember it like it was… a long time ago. But I remember it anyway, quite clearly.

Enter a girl, about five years old.

There I was, walking by the woods just near our house.

FEE:               They weren’t the creepy sort of woods one expects. The trees were huge, and comforting. There were birds in the treetops, as if swimming between the leaves. And then…

FIONA:          And then I saw the figure of a large animal. It was a stag. An antelope with huge horns in the shape of tree branches. And this stag had a lot of branches on his head.

FEE:               He turned to look at me and I froze. He seemed to be calling me then. And I followed him, walking into the woods.

FIONA:          I remember a large twisted tangling of tree roots in the place where I saw the stag. There was something inviting about the roots; sort of like a blanket fort. I climbed in. And immediately stumbled down, grazing my shins. I fell onto a pathway that was neither here nor there. I stood up easily.

FEE:               It didn’t feel like the woods anymore. But sort of like the woods even so.

FIONA:          I later learnt that people in town called these Fey Crossings. Magical pathways in time, where the faeries live and work and dance and play. I walked for some time. There was no sunlight, just a strange blue glow coming from all the bushes and trees surrounding the sandy path. The stag was nowhere. I don’t know what I expected to see, but what I did see…

FEE:               Were a few old brick walls, missing roofs. And rubble.
Nothing like the faerie-castles in the story books. On one wall, in writing I could read, because I had just learnt my alphabet I saw…

FIONA:          “Where do I come from?”

FEE:               I thought the answer was obvious: I came from that tree back there. But then…

FIONA:          I saw the stag in the distance, further down the pathway. He seemed to be calling me closer.

FEE:               I got near enough to touch the stag. He was beautiful. His eyes quiet, he looked at me. And nuzzled my open hand. A voice then filled my

head.

FIONA:          I think it was the stag, giving me something; giving me words. I remember:

You are from light,
Light that first shines, and then falls
Light does fall,
Fall and fall.
And then the night is nice, nice and bright too,
To help us fall.
Night does fall, and fall and fall,
Til light comes up.

FEE:               The stag gave me a poem. And then walked off. I tried to follow but he seemed to waft off into mist. Mist that had now creeped in all around the pathway. I was scared. Where did he go?

FIONA:          As I was about to cry my feet kicked something small in the dirt. A whistle. I picked it up. A whistle? I put it to my lips. A soft sound. To my surprise…

FEE:               A little streak of green light appeared on the pathway at my feet. It was shining the way. The faint glow grew dim. I blew the whistle again, more light. I kept blowing the whistle following the pathway, until I reached another tree.

FIONA:          Feeling less and less scared, I climbed between the roots.

FEE:               And I climbed up and out into a familiar garden.

FIONA:          It was the big oak tree in the back of our garden. Through the windows of the house I could see my mother making dinner. The sun was down, night time. Bright night. And I was light. I ran inside. Home. To tell my mom the story of the Fey Crossing.

Blackout.


Biography

Tristan holds a Masters degree in Drama, specialising in Contemporary Performance. He worked for the National English Literary Museum as an archivist for Drama manuscripts and has facilitated drama workshops at festivals around South Africa, France and Poland. A handful of his written plays have been published, and more of them staged locally. His research has been published in the South African Theatre Journal, Interartive and Intellect journals and has been presented in Cape Town, Pretoria, Johannesburg, Grahamstown, Bloemfontein, Kobe, Toulouse, Malmo and Helsinki. He has been the artistic director of Masidlale Productions since 2009 and currently works as a lecturer for the AFDA School in Johannesburg.