A Universal Quarrel (2017)
Linda Tesoro and Joey Belfiore
in the play “A Universal Quarrel”
A Universal Quarrel
by Lauren Kimes
Earth: Could you please lower your brightness? (holding her hand to her face to block the sun)
Sun: Can I- can I lower my brightness? (laughing)
Earth: You’re giving me a burn, Sun (lowering her hand, annoyed)
Sun: Well the Humans are enjoying it, so no. I won’t lower my brightness.
Earth: I’ll cover your rays with my clouds!
Sun: Oh no you won’t!
Earth: Yes I will!
Sun: Don’t you dare! (warningly)
Earth: How else am I to cool down?
Sun: Fine! Fine! I was just trying to give the Humans a nice sunny day but no! Miss Debby downer over here has to rain on my parade. (grunts, throwing her hands up angrily)
Earth: Well little Miss Sunshine, if you hadn’t been burning so bright we wouldn’t have this problem. Would we?
Sun: Ugh! I can be vicious if I want to! I could turn your forests into ash right now!
Earth: Then what would you do? Sit there? Burn yourself out? Yeah! That’s right! You’d have no one to talk to or rather, fight with then would you? (Putting hands on hips)
Sun: Are you saying that I live for you? You are so wrong, sister. (Holding hand up as if to wave Earth away)
Earth: Well it’s not like you have anything better to do! All you do is fight with me!
Sun: I GET ONE SEASON! ONE SEASON TO GET TO MY FULL POTENTIAL?! As if that’s fair. (crossing her arms)
Earth: Thank God your twelve hours are almost up. I don’t think I could stand one more minute of your incessant screaming!
Sun: But….. (sings loudly and obnoxiously) THE SUN WILL COME OUT TOMORROW! (Lifting up her arms to exaggerate the song)
Earth: Please stop.
Sun: Unlike you, the humans adore my sunny rays!
Earth: Ha! Until they wake up the next morning looking like a lobster. (Rolling her eyes)
Sun: You think people enjoy the dark? People are afraid of it! Ugh how stupid can you be?
Earth: Excuse me?
Sun: How come you get the humans yet you don’t realize their fears and discomforts!
Earth: You don’t either! You burn them! Especially during the summer months!
Sun: At least I know they enjoy a little of me. All you give them is rain and snow.
Earth: It’s necessary!
Sun: For who? You! How about you think about the humans for once and not yourself! (sun turns away and lights dim)
Earth: How rude! (Earth turns away)
(lights turn off completely)
(Sun is alone on stage)
(Bright orange or yellow light surrounds her)
Sun: Little Miss Sunshine? Ugh. I’ll be little until I scorch your forests, dry your seas, and leave you there like the shriveled up dirt ball you are!
(Sun walks halfway across stage angrily with her hands clenched at her sides)
Sun: Earth thinks she’s all that with her forests and her streams but would she have that without me? No! She revolves around me! Without me would her plants grow? No! She needs me more than I need her! How can she be so terribly rude when she knows she would be dark and cold without my beautiful sunny presence. Why does someone so atrocious get all the humans? I mean, we all know who the humans like the most. They litter and pollute her air for a reason! Earth deserves a lesson and I encourage the humans to give it to her!
(Sun stands there silent for a while thinking about what she has said)
(her hands relax at her sides)
Sun: Then again, she is right. What would I do if she was gone?
(Sun pauses again contemplating)
Sun: No! What am I saying? She’s been nothing but rude to me since the day we created! Ugh! Since when have I been one to need anyone? Such nonsense!
(Sun crosses to the rest of the stage to the edge)
Sun: I mean I can’t blame her for being jealous. I know I was always the pretty one. (laughs, flipping her hair back)
Sun: I won’t be deterred by yet another snobby comment by Earth. She means nothing. Not to me and not to the humans. She means absolutely nothing!
(stomps off stage)
Earth: Why? I ask her to do me one small thing and she has to get all fired up about it! I don’t understand. I didn’t do anything to her! All I did was ask her to lower her brightness and she, like the drama queen she is, had to blow it out of proportion. (shaking her head)
(walks to side of the stage)
Earth: Why can’t she just do me a favor for once? How hard would that be? She is the most stubborn, egotistical fireball I’ve ever met!
(crosses her arms angrily and lets out an exaggerated breath)
Earth: She thinks she can do whatever she wants just because she’s older. Or because (raises her hands making quotations with her fingers) the humans like her more.
(drops arms wearily)
Earth: I just don’t understand. Why do people love Sun so much when I give them everything. I give them water from my rivers to drink. I give them plants and animals to eat. I give them wood to build their homes, yet they still choose to litter and pollute me. Why? “Just because.” one might say, but I don’t see that being any good reason to treat me like that. Those Humans would not survive if it weren’t for my rivers, my food, my wood. They would not exist! Why do they love Sun more than me? Yes she gives them warmth and light but I give them air to breathe! They treat me horribly even though they know they would not be here if it weren’t for me. I don’t understand. I just don’t understand.
(putting her hand to her head wearily)
Earth: What if the humans do like her better? I mean, she’s right. The only weather I give them is rain and snow… but I do listen! I know they hate the rain. I know they hate the dark. Maybe they do hate me. (lowers head sadly)
(Earth wraps her arms around her chest and pauses for a moment)
Earth: No matter what the humans think, they need me. I need to take care of them. It’s my job. Why else would I be here?
End of Scene
(Sun already on stage)
(Earth walks on stage with her head down)
Sun: Morning. (saying it dryly)
(Earth turns her head away)
Sun: Oh, so now you’re giving me the silent treatment?
Earth: I figure if I don’t say anything you won’t have anything to judge me on.
Sun: Ha! You already said something! But honestly do you think I like fighting with you?
Sun: OK let me try to explain this to you from my perspective. You’re just an obstacle. A problem. All you do is get in everyone’s way. I’m surprised the humans care about you at all.
Earth: You know what? The humans only love you for what you can give them. Not for who you are. If they ever found out who you were and what you said, they would hate you just as much as I do!
Sun: But they will never know me. They will adore my beauty and warmth. While you will be ignored. The humans will never love you as much as they love me.
Earth: Yes, you are beautiful from their perspective but know this… it doesn’t matter how beautiful you are, because your true self will come out soon enough. Just because the humans can’t see it doesn’t mean the other planets can’t.
Sun: You think I care about the other planets?
Earth: You care enough to fight with me. (pointing a finger at her chest taking a step towards Sun)
Sun: Because you’re the only one that’s annoying! (stepping towards Earth)
Earth: Well you’re the only one that’s inconsiderate and rude! (takes another step towards Sun)
Sun: Oh, I’m the inconsiderate and rude one! (stepping again towards Earth)
Earth: Yes! You don’t care about anyone but yourself! (sticking a finger out at Sun)
Sun: Really, I didn’t know you held the secrets of the universe. I would have thought that I do more for the humans than you ever did! (lifting her hands up and walking away from Earth)
Earth: Don’t bring them into this, Sun. We both know it’s not about them. (crossing her arms)
Sun: But its is. Half of the reason you annoy me so much is because the humans deserve better than you!
Earth: Then who do you suggest take care of them? You? (laughing) They wouldn’t last a second on you let alone be near you without you incinerating them.
Sun: (tears forming) Yes I know that! And if i could switch places with you I would! I hate you because I’m… I… You are able to take care of the humans in a way I never can and never will.
(there is silence for a moment ) (Earth is taken aback by Sun’s emotional outburst)
Earth: Sun, I-
Sun: No. Just don’t. (wiping away her tears) Don’t pity me, Earth. You never did before so don’t now.” (turns away ashamed)
(Earth nods putting her head down)
Sun: Just leave me alone ok? I think it’s better for both of us if we just stop talking.
Earth: Sun, I don’t-
Sun:(quickly turns on Earth angrily) Just stop already! Stop trying to be the better planet ok? I’ve already told you everything. What else do you want from me?
Earth: I don’t want anything. I just… I just- (shaking her head)
Sun: Just what, Earth? (angrily) Just want to know why I’m feeling like this now? I’ve always felt like this. I’ve always been jealous. I’ve always felt I couldn’t do much for the humans but I never ever needed anyone.
Earth: Sun, everyone needs somebody. The humans need you. I need you. Even though you don’t want to admit it, you need the humans too. You may not need me but who else would you fight with? (smiling a bit)
Sun: That’s true. (letting out a little laugh)
Earth: Look, I’ve said some horrible things to you, but I’ll be here if you need me.
Sun:(nods) I’m sorry about what I said. (looking at her feet)
Earth: I’m sorry too.
Sun: Truce then? (holding her hand out looking up hopefully)
Earth: Truce. (taking Sun’s hand and shaking it, smiling)
Sun: OK but can we at least get the temperature to one-fifty tomorrow? (holding her hands together and batting her eyelashes, pleading with Earth)
Earth:(lets out an exaggerated breath) Here we go again. (shaking her head)
(lights go dark)