Romeo and Juliet

Veronaville Literary Journal - Fall 2004

- Hermia Capp, aspiring playwrite

Prologue, as narrated by Hermia Capp in her late thirties in the opening scene

William Shakespeare, the founder of Veronaville, once said "Life is a Stage". We all know the story of the star-crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet in the Shakespearean play very well. Coincidentally, my older sister is also named Juliet, and her first crush Romeo. Even more coincidentally, the two families, Capp and Monty also have been feuding for decades. I believe most folks in town had been thinking, would the tragedy repeat itself? Would the family duel last for generations to come? What fate awaits the Capps, the Montys, as well as the Summerdreams who got caught in the middle of it all? Today, I stand here before you and present a different tale.

Opening Scene, the curtain opens with spot light on stage set of an art Studio at unspecified location. Romeo in his early forties, with his back to the audience, is painting away at a portrait of a young woman.

One moment later, Romeo put his paint brush and palette down, turns around to face his audience, and begins his soliloquy:

"Oh my dearest Juliet. How vividly do I still remember your youthful face. You were the reason behind my first painting. It was you who woke the heart of an artist to all the beauty that exists in this world. Did you understand the feelings I have for you, was and has always been the fierce desire of a painter to communicate the passion he feels towards life, through colors and shapes, just as a poet would through the sounds of his words? Did you know that the will of an artist is not to possess, but simply cherish the beauties that move his soul?"

Spotlight on the stage set of art studio fades. New spotlight is directed to a stage set of a residential study at an unspecified location where Juliet in her early forties traces her fingers over an old photograph of Romeo.

A moment later, Juliet stood to face the audience and began her soliloquy:

"Romeo, Oh Romeo, Wherefore art though Romeo? Do you still remember our youthful embrace and kisses? Did you know that the feelings I have for you was and have always been the natural instinct of a woman to give herself completely to the love of her life? The simple want of a woman to share every inch of her soul, every thought that comes across her mind, every drop of tears, and every laughter. Did you not understand love requires commitment and sacrifices? Was love only a game for you?"

Act 1, Scene 1

Cap Mansion, evening, the curtain opens with Romeo fighting with Tybalt, while Juliette was trying to get Romeo's attention.

Juliette mumbles: mm.. Romeo.. can I talk to you for a second? hm.... We have spent a lot of time together lately... How do you feel about going steady with me?

Romeo shoves Tybalt away: Tybalt, just WHAT the fuck is YOUR problem!??!

Romeo turns around yet looks at the ground instead of Juliet: I like you a lot, I really do. Yet I haven't really thought much about 'relationship'. I only know I enjoy spending time with you. I like the ways things are between us now.

Act 1, Scene 2

Capp Manor, morning, curtains open with Juliet and her aunt Gorneril conversing over a game of chess.

Gorneril: Sweetie, thanx for inviting me over. It has been ages since I spent the night here at the Capp mansion. It sure brings back many childhood memories.

Juliet: Hey, aunt, how do you know whether you have truly fallen in love?

Gorneril: ..hmm, huh?, oh, what did you say again, I was so absorbed in making the move, I did not really hear you...

Juliet, with a hesitant look on her face: Oh, I was talking about how I have been thinking about applying for college. It would really be great since I have never traveled outside of Veronaville.

Gorneril: ..Speaking of traveling, it is a nice day outside, why don't we go for lunch in town?

Gorneril and Juliet got up to get dressed in separate rooms. While changing, Gorneril talks out loud her thoughts:

Oh Cordelia, why did you pass away when Juliet is still of such tender age. You are supposed to teach her the lessons of womanhood. I am already a mother of four and can't take up any more baggage. I hardly know how to handle my own daughter Hermia.

Curtain draws.

Act 1 Scene 3

Curtain reopens to show a store at Veronaville, Goneril and Juliet enter the scene and sat down at the table near the back of the stage, chatting. A moment later, Patrizio and Isabella Monty enter the scene.

Patrizio (Glacing in the direction of Goneril, pulling Isabella aside): Look who we have got here.. Goneril Capp. Did you hear that she and her husband are still unemployed and the whole bunch of them are scoopped up in the Theatrical Trailer?

Isabella: I wonder how the they can all fit in... One can't expect Consort Capp's children to do any better.

Meanwhile, Consort Capp enters the scene, sees Patrizio and Isabella, initially tries to be polite, yet walks past them with a frown on his face once he realizes that they are gossiping about his family.

Act 1 Scene 4

Curtain reopens with the setting of Monty Ranch, where Death towers over Patrizio.

Death: This is the end of your journey in life. Ashes to Ashes. Dust to Dust. You have come with nothing and now you must depart with nothing. What are you leaving behind in this world? Are they deeds of loving kindness or are they patty thoughts and prejudices? Will time wash them away or will they trap your chilren and grandchildren into future tragedies? Either way, it is out of your hands now.

As Patrizio marches towards the end of his life, his wife Isabella and grandson Romeo rushed out of the house and began mourning over Patrizio's death.

Before perishing into the back stage, faceless Death faces the audience and speaks his last words:

"Most can't see me face. Most people avoid me like a plague. Only the ones who are ready to accept me understands the meaning and purpose of their lives."

Act 1 Scene 5

Curtains reopens with Romeo painting in his room and Mercutio standing behind him.
Mercutio: Dude, what are you doing?

Romeo replied without turning around: Why would you even ask? Is it not obvious that I am painting?

Mercutio: Well, it is just that I have never seen you paint before...

Romeo: Nothing I love in this world lasts forever. Our parents are gone, then Grandpa Patrizio, soon it would be Granma Isabella, and eventually I will be gone to. Why can't things stay the way they are? Why can't beauty and love last forever? Well, if I get really good at painting, at least I will leave something beautiful behind and be remembered.

Mercutio shakes his head, turns around, and walks away: Dude, you think way too much. I would rather leave behind businesses so my future sons and daughters can at least have bread and butter.

Romeo continued to paint while the the stage light was dimmed and then brightened to show that he had painted all through the night.

Dropping his paint brush, Romeo cursed: "Damn it, I just don't know how to get this painting right!"

After walking towards the phone and dialing a number, Romeo spoke to Juliette on the other end of the line: "Hey Juliette, do you want to come over?"

Curtain draws.

Act 1 Scene 6

Curtain reopens with Romeo and Juliette in the front yard of the Monty Ranch.

After Romeo greeted Juliette, the two gazed into one another's eyes for a moment. Romeo leaned forward and touched Juliette's cheek with the back of his hands and murmured, "So beautiful...."

Entranced, Juliette held Romeo's hand on her cheek for a moment, and then suddenly drew back,
"Did you not say that you don't want a relationship and would want things to stay the same?"

Feeling regretful of having hurt Juliette's feelings before, Romeo took another step forward and held Juliette's hands in his, "I realize now that things will change. We can't stay as kids forever."

Juliette looked into Romeo's eyes and asked, "Does that mean you are agreeing to go steady with me?"

Looking down at the hands he was holding, Romeo responded, "I only know that I want to kiss you and hold you in my arms right now. Why can't we simply enjoy one another now instead of making promises into the future? No matter how hard one tries, life may not always turn out the way we want. I just want to live one day at the time and experience each moment to its fullest. Do you never think about college and seeing the world outside Veronaville? Who knows where we would end up?"

Romeo looked at Juliette in the eyes again, held her close, and kissed her on the lips.

Curtains drew while two love birds continued their courting rituals.

Welcome back Old Neighbors and Welcome the New Neighbor

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