A short play for very young audiences
River, a boy
Wren, a girl
A very tall plum tree with a single plum high in the branches.
Lights up on RIVER asleep on a picnic blanket under a plum tree. When he wakes, he discovers ants have emptied his basket. He follows the ant trail. He spies a ripe plum high in the tree.
FROG: Ribbit. Ribbit.
RIVER: Hello, Frog.
RIVER: I wonder, can you tell me how to get that plum?
RIVER: I’m sorry, I don’t understand.
FROG: Croak. Ribbit.
RIVER: I’m afraid I don’t speak frog.
FROG jumps. RIVER looks on. FROG jumps again. RIVER jumps.
RIVER: Oh, I get it. Thank you.
FROG hops off. RIVER jumps. He can’t reach the plum.
RIVER: Cat, maybe you can help me.
CAT rubs up against RIVER’s legs.
RIVER: I’m trying to get that plum.
CAT circles round RIVER’s legs. CAT purrs.
CAT licks her paws. RIVER licks his hand. CAT purrs. CAT stretches her front paws on the tree trunk.
RIVER: Oh, I see.
CAT exits. RIVER stretches his arms high as he can on the tree trunk.
DOG enters. DOG carries a Frisbee.
RIVER: Hey there, Doggie.
RIVER: Got a Frisbee, have you?
DOG drops the Frisbee at RIVER’s feet.
DOG: Woof woof.
DOG runs around, eager to play.
RIVER: I’d play with you if I could, but I’m very hungry.
DOG: Woof woof.
RIVER: I’m trying to get that plum up there.
DOG: Woof woof woof.
DOG runs around.
RIVER: There’s an idea! I’ll throw the Frisbee!
RIVER throws the Frisbee at the plum. DOG retrieves it. RIVER throws it again. DOG retrieves it. RIVER throws it again. DOG retrieves it. This is fun for DOG, but the plum remains out of reach.
PAINTER enters carrying a bucket of paint and paint roller on a long stick. DOG runs off with the Frisbee.
RIVER: Oh, hello! Are you going to paint my house?
RIVER: You’re a house painter, right?
PAINTER: No hablo ingles.
PAINTER walks on.
RIVER: One minute! I was wondering – do you think – may I –
RIVER gestures for the paint roller.
RIVER: I’m trying to reach that plum.
PAINTER hands RIVER the stick. RIVER tries to reach the plum. The stick is too short.
PAINTER exits. RIVER feels defeated.
WREN appears high in the tree.
WREN: Hello down there!
WREN: I wonder – could you help me? I’ve climbed up here to get that plum. When I knock it down, will you catch it?
RIVER runs under the plum. WREN reaches for it. She knocks it down. RIVER catches it. RIVER admires the coveted plum as WREN climbs down. RIVER hands her the plum.
WREN: Thank you.
RIVER: Why didn’t you just put the plum in your pocket?
WREN empties her pockets. They are full of plums. Plums roll all over the picnic blanket. RIVER and WREN enjoy a picnic of plums as lights fade.
End of play.
Lojo Simon’s newest TYA play is SEEDS OF CHANGE for Creede Repertory Theatre’s Young Audience Outreach Tour.
Last year, CRT toured her play ALBERT PORTER: BOY EXPLORER. More at www.lojosimon.com