Saturday 11 May (1) – Average Egg

by Vidya Rajan

A woman in average office-y clothes walks to a table. There are a couple of chairs behind the table. She has a small lunch bag with her.

She pulls up a chair, sits down and sighs. She looks exhausted.

She puts the lunch bag on the table.

She begins to unpack it, item by item. She is a little slow about it, each item held up for a second, then placed down.

First, a sad looking sandwich, in a plastic sandwich bag.

Next, a bag of chopped carrots.

And lastly, an egg.

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Wednesday 8 May – High Spirits All Round

by Angus Cameron

A working-class kitchen.

Lee, a working man, has his head in his hands.

Georgie, a working-class woman, is looking at him.

Lee:                                I’ve been working at that company for ages.

Georgie:                         I know, love.

Lee:                                How can they let me go like that?

Georgie:                         It’s wrong.

Beat

                                      I can’t believe this is happening to us.

Lee:                                We’ve got kids.

Georgie:                         And a mortgage.

Lee:                                This Government is ruining us.

Georgie:                         With their rules.

Lee:                                And . . . Not enough rules. Sometimes it’s about not enough rules.   Like, not the right rules. You know?

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Sunday 5 May – Not a King

by Emilie Collyer

The PM’s office.

PM:                     Whaddya mean they’re writing plays?

AIDE:                  About the campaign.

PM:                     Like for the television? Is this a bloody ABC thing?

AIDE:                  Er, no. Just short plays, not television.

PM:                     Like for theatre?

AIDE:                  Yes.

PM:                     Like is our Cate in them?

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Friday 3 May – Rapture

by Emilie Collyer

Many years from now, it could be a hundred, it could be a thousand, a warm autumn wind blows through an empty parliament chamber.

A cleaner enters.

The cleaner sweeps the floor of errant leaves, runs a cloth over the benches and seats.

The cleaner is startled – but not terrified, this has happened before – by a stranger, a stranger, who perhaps has been sleeping there, a stranger who doesn’t particularly look they would belong in a parliamentary chamber.

CLEANER:         All right?

Beat.

STRANGER:      Just needed a place to crash.

CLEANER:         Yep. Beat. Travelling through?

STRANGER:      Yeah. Don’t know where to.

CLEANER:         Coffee in the kitchen if you need it. Bread too. If you’re hungry.

Beat.

STRANGER:      What is this place?

CLEANER:         It’s a … it’s a memory, I guess.

STRANGER:      Pretty grand memory.

CLEANER:         Yep.

                            Beat.

                            All these seats used to be filled. People who were voted in to make decisions, make the rules, form a government.

STRANGER:      Small group like this?

CLEANER:         On behalf of everyone.

STRANGER:      And they’d … talk, get things done?

CLEANER:         More or less.

STRANGER:      Peacefully?

CLEANER:         More or less.

The stranger whistles as if this is quite something.

STRANGER:      Long time ago.

CLEANER:         Long time ago.

Beat.

STRANGER:      And what do you do?

CLEANER:         I clean. Keep a bit of food, a few supplies for any needing them who might pass by.

STRANGER:      Risky. Beat. See much trouble?

CLEANER:         Oh, plenty. Beat. But most folks are decent. Just need a moment’s rest, somewhere safe to lay their head. A chat with a stranger. Then back out into the fray.

Beat.

STRANGER:      Had some weird dreams. Shouting. Bad jokes. Taunting. Slurs.

CLEANER:         Yep.

STRANGER:      Some of the seats, it’s almost like they’ve still got imprints of the people. Beat. What happened to them?

CLEANER:         Nobody knows for sure. Best guess is that it was a kind of rapture. All who sat in here or were eligible to sit in here just … disappeared. Some say they were eaten by the ghosts of their own pasts. Others that they uploaded into virtual versions of themselves but couldn’t hold human form any more. Whatever it was, there weren’t enough of them left to form any kind of governing body, so the whole thing just … collapsed.

STRANGER:      Shit, hey.

CLEANER:         Yep.

STRANGER:      And you?

CLEANER:         Oh I’ve been here a long time. Like you, travelling through, stopped here, someone was kind enough to look after me for a night or two. I never left.

STRANGER:      Kindness of strangers, hey.

CLEANER:         Yep. Beat. Long enough for me now, I think. Long enough. Beat. Now, let’s see to that coffee.

The cleaner leaves.

The stranger waits.

Time passes and we might assume the cleaner is not coming back.

Eventually the stranger picks up the broom, or the cloth, and starts tending to the chamber.

END

Thursday 2 May

by Keziah Warner

Sara’s office, early evening.

Sara is on the phone. She’s wearing her trench coat. There are fifteen or so cases of olive oil piled around the room. She is resting her feet on one as she talks.

SARA: Just because they think it’s an emergency doesn’t mean we have to think it’s an emergency

Yes but it’s time we stood up for ourselves, established our own identity. We need to show our club members that we’re strong and independent, not just kowtowing to foreign trends

Yes, David. I understand.

Well if the UK jumped off a cliff should we jump off a cliff? I mean really, David

Yes. Yes.

Some of my best friends are polar bears, David. But look I really want to talk about our commitment to

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Tuesday 30 April

by Marcel Dorney

A television station. A soundstage.
Two podia. Microphones.

Behind them, the cyc projection, red capital letters: THE DEBATE.

K., in their twenties, taps the microphone on the left.

K                    OK, should I switch it on?

J. is heard over speakers, unseen. The voice is of an Anglo-Australian in their 40s, male.

J                     It’s on.

K                    Sorry. Do you want me to switch it on now?

J                     The Microphone Is On.

K                    OK, no, not /the microphone – 

J                     Signal’s clear, level’s /fine up here –

K                    – I apologise, I mean – the filter, should I switch /the –

J                     What filter?

K                    – filter.

Should we test it now.

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