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Spunk, Act 1, Scene 2 | History Matters: Celebrating Women's Plays of the Past

Spunk
Spunk, Act 1, Scene 2

The Scene

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SPUNK

Miss Lina, would you do me the favor to step over to the refreshment stand and choose your withers on me?

 

LINA

(coyly) Much obliged, Mr. Spunk, and my mouth is a little parched from all this dancing. I’ll choose some lemonade.

 

(They stroll towards the table with RUBY and several others staring hard. While LINA drinks the lemonade he quietly buys her ahuge stick of peppermint candy and places it in her hand. She accepts it gladly and they cross near the water.)

 

SPUNK

Whilst we'se so hot from dancing, we ought to try one of them boat-rides. I loves to pull a boat.

 

LINA

Them boats is full of leaks. Admiral ain't fooling nobody on his boat-rides. (They laugh lightly.)

 

SPUNK

(earnestly) Well, anyhow we can git in one of them and sit down, can't us?

 

LINA

(nodding yes) Uh, huh, I reckon.

 

(He helps her to a seat in the prow and seats himself on the rower’s bench and picks up an oar. Everybody begins to stare silently.)

 

SPUNK

Must I shove off, Miss Lina?

 

 

LINA

(nervously) We better not get out into deep water, Mister Spunk. It's dangerous, in the dark too.

 

[Cut: (Enter HODGE BISHOP, left, An ominous silence falls as he looks all about him. He walks slowly to center and stands glaring at EVALINA AHD SPUNK. Then he lifts his hat,

fumbles in the band and puts it on again, but backwards this time and exits again, left, insolently.)]

 

SPUNK

Nothing can't be dangerous when you with me. I can swim real good. I could take the Mississippi river for a dusty road if I had to. I’d love to be out on that lake.

 

LINA

(looks about nervously) We better not, though. Not out on the water. Let's us just set in the boat.

 

SPUNK

(seating her facing the audience and he facing her) Whatever you say, Miss Evalina. But I done found out it ain't no use being scared of things. If you feel to do a thing, do it. You can't die but one time nohow. (She looks at him softly. He gets his box in position.) I got a song made up in me for you.

 

LINA

For me? You must have made it up awful quick. This the first time you ever seen

me.

 

SPUNK

It don't seem that way. Seem like I always been knowing you. When I seen you come walking in just now it seem like you had bean off somewhere and just got back home.

 

LINA

You don't seem strange to me neither. Look like I been knowing you, too. And that's a nice feeling. I don't like to feel strange 'round people. And that's the way I been.

 

SPUNK

I know how that is by my own self. That's how come I already got your song made up. But anyhow it ain't hard for me to make up songs. If I get to feeling real strong inside a song makes itself up and all I have to do is to sing it. Like this one I'm going to sing right now.

 

LINA

I'll be glad. Your compliments is nice.

About the Playwright

Zora Neale Hurston
Zora Neale Hurston

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