Emma Rose: A Monologue

(EMMA ROSE is sitting in a rocking chair holding a cup of tea. The light catches the steam rising from the tea. Her granddaughter is sitting at her feet.)

EMMA ROSE: Yes… yes… oh yes. I know what it is you’re feeling. I know… I know it’s hard to believe I was once as young as you. But I was. Oh yes… I was. I even looked like you. It’s like you were my own daughter. My own daughter… (Pause) she doesn’t look like me, your mother that is. No, she looks like her father. She could always make me smile. She has his eyes… his eyes.

But yes, don’t let me get distracted. Yes, yes… oh yes, I’ve felt what you’re feeling. I’ve felt it. I was not much older than you are, just eighteen or so. Yes, I was eighteen, I remember. And he was perfect… unattainable. He made me so nervous my heart would quiver in my throat. Yet I didn’t know. Just his subtle hints… I always wore my hair up to keep it out of my eyes. It was long then, even longer than it is now – if you can believe that! And, one time I took it down, shook it all out. Just shook my mane of dark, dark hair. It was more wild and tangled than your hair is, not so sleek and beautiful. (She strokes her granddaughter’s hair.) He saw me take down the mane and he just glanced up casually once, and said, “Your hair looks pretty like that.” Pretty like that, that’s what he said. And then he just went back to what he was doing. He later told me that he once picked a huge bouquet of wild flowers, but let them die, all hidden away, because he couldn’t bring himself to give them to me. Hmm… he was sweet indeed.

You are such a blessing in my life. Such a woman… blooming, blooming right before my eyes. What a lucky young man this love of yours is. Does he know? (Her granddaughter shrugs her shoulders.) You don’t know? Oh he knows… oh yes, yes he knows. He’s a lucky one. (Laughing) Probably terrified. Indeed… a very lucky one. Your father was lucky too, lucky to be with my beautiful daughter. And she has… his eyes… (She trails off into silence.)

I’m sorry, look at me getting distracted now. Yes, we were out one night just talking. He and I. Talking about the things in life that you feel are so serious and important when you are young. And I remember the stars that night. I’ll never forget the stars. We were lying on our backs, buried in the damp grass, staring up at them. There was a whole world opening up above us that just went on and on and on… forever. It was so big and overwhelming that it made me feel safe. Safe in how small I was, safe in how unimportant I was. Yet, hmm… I felt honored. Honored to still be a part of it. And the stars kept winking to each other, winking like they knew what was about to happen, whispering amongst themselves. I stared up at that huge expanse and gave myself over to it. Suddenly I was brought back to earth. He had kissed my hand. So softly, so tenderly and with so much longing. He kissed my hand. I could see those stars reflected in his eyes. Deep, like a reflection in a still pool. He kissed me then. Full, young lips joining in trembling perfection.

I was doomed. From that moment on, I was his. I still am his… wherever he is now. Wherever he is… We woke up in that grassy field covered in dew and golden rays. Oh yes, yes… I am his. I always was, always will be. Of course I miss him. Wherever he is. He’s part of those stars now. He is up in that wide open space. No wonder it made me feel so safe that night. I’ll join him soon. Oh yes… He’s a lucky one, your young man. Oh yes. You’re a lucky one. Yes… we were the lucky ones.

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