THE TINY, ELDRITCH PENIS OF H.P. LOVECRAFT
a play in one act
STAGE is bare except for BLACK CURTAIN and two “TIKI” TORCHES at far STAGE LEFT FRONT and far STAGE RIGHT FRONT. Instrumental DOOM METAL plays at a low volume throughout proceedings, not loud enough to obscure any dialogue but loud enough to be consistently audible. There is a slight smell of fish pervading the staging area.
Author H.P. LOVECRAFT emerges from STAGE LEFT. He is wearing a trim black suit and black shoes. His tie is thin and black, his white shirt freshly starched. He wears a mask made entirely of segments of lobster shell glued together. They cover his face entirely except for his eyes and mouth. As opposed to most Halloween masks, LOVECRAFT's mask hugs his face. A raw squid hangs from his groin, mimicking exposed genitalia. LOVECRAFT walks to CENTER STAGE and sits in a featureless chair, only making certain that he does not sit on his squid. LOVECRAFT has a very rigid posture; his squid dangles over the seat of the chair. He faces the audience and begins to speak conversationally.
Okay, so tonight we're gonna do things a
little differently. We're going to take some
questions from the audience. As you know,
these (holds up index cards) were passed out
and returned earlier precisely for this segment.
(Jauntily) So, without any further delay:
Question Number One!
LOVECRAFT selects a single index card, reads off the question.
"Were you a racist?"
LOVECRAFT sighs thoughtfully.
You know, I get this question a lot. So often
people will think this because of the name
of the cat in my story "The Rats in the Walls"
or a few...(gestures dismissively)...stray lines
in "Call of Cthulhu", but the reality of it is...
the reality of it is...(out with it)...is that I was
a dirty, dirty racist. It's true. But you have to
remember that my parents were racists, our
neighbors were racists...hell, even most of my
readers were racist! (pauses to think) Before
I went to New York City I had seen, like, maybe
2 or 3 black people ever. So I didn't really
have a lot to work with. It's true, I could have
reached out more. (nods) I could have. But
ultimately, does my racism make Tsathoggua
any more or less Unspeakable? (forced nervous
laugh) Okay, next question.
LOVECRAFT selects another index card, reads question.
"Were you gay?" (nods) Yup, knew this one was
coming too. Sure, I get it: Fastidious. Introverted.
Socially awkward. One known relationship with a
woman that became a brief marriage that became a
good-natured divorce. Of course you'd suspect a
beard, who wouldn't, you know? But, uh, the issue
wasn't that I preferred the company of individuals
of my own gender - the issue was that I did not
prefer...the company of individuals...of either
LOVECRAFT gesticulates irritatedly.
I had friends, of course, but...when it came to romance
or...physical intimacy, there was never anything there...
except disgust. The meat-things and the fish-things...all
the same thing...secretions...small, bubbling...pink fleshy
ridges...lips, tongues...holes upon holes...the smell of
sweat and other things...darker things...gill slits...perverted
fleshy architecture...seemingly miles high...then almost
microscopically close...a tiny nub...like a pencil eraser...
hiding amidst the slimy folds...cheap imposture...(voice
rises) I, I cannot!...The Shining Trapezohedron...
MY NAME...MY NAME IS H.P. LOVECRAFT!
I...I AM IN PROVIDENCE AND I AM SAFE FROM
ALL HARM! I DO NOT HAVE A SQUID PENIS!
LOVECRAFT calms himself down, carefully takes a seat so as not to crush his squid penis.
Whoa! Okay, there. Wow. (exhales) So you can see,
basically, that I was not really "boyfriend material".
And as far as raising a family - Woosh! Not happening.
Okay, let's just...let's just move on to the next question.
LOVECRAFT selects a third index card, reads question.
"Is Cthulhu what you think a vagina looks like?"
Okay, that's...(genuine irritation)...who put this in
here? I...you know, you try to be a good sport, you
try to answer the questions that are asked of you and...
then you get stuff like this. Okay, well, we're just
gonna go ahead and end early tonight. That's all.
I'm just gonna go.
LOVECRAFT stands up, shrugs helplessly.
I'm just gonna go.
LOVECRAFT walks off STAGE LEFT. FIN.