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The Blood Of
Squirrels

A Play In Three Acts

by

Gabriel Rosenstock

ORIGINAL WRITING

© Gabriel Rosenstock 2012
Cover image;
‘When you speak so loud, I can not hear what I am saying’
photo transfer, inkjet archival print, pen, printing ink

20.5X30.5cm, ©2011
by Mohsin Shafi
an independent artist who lives and works in Lahore, Pakistan.
www.mohsinshafi.com

ISBNs
Parent : 978-1-909007-12-3
ePub : 978-1-909007-13-0
Mobi : 978-1-909007-14-7
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in
any form or by any means—graphic, electronic or mechanical, including
photocopying, recording, taping or information storage and retrieval
systems—without the prior written permission of the author.
Queries in relation to performance rights may be addressed to the
author’s editor, Dr Mícheál Ó hAodha via the publishers.

Published by Original Writing Ltd., Dublin, 2012.

Summary
A full-length stage play exploring degrees of attraction
and repulsion experienced by characters who find
themselves thrown together in a holiday camp in the
south of France.
The Irish couple are latter-day Druids. Their daughter is
an apprentice Druid. The two other couples are British.
There is magic in the air, literally, and suspense intensifies
as we try to figure out how benign or otherwise this
magic actually is.
Dramatic tension rises and falls and earthy humour
shares the stage with druidic ritual. These rituals create
an ambience which allows for a questioning of reality
and identity.
The veneer of modern civilization momentarily
disappears and in its place something ancient and
terrible, mysterious and cathartic, takes over the stage.

Dramatis Personae
COLM:

Latter day druid, self-possessed. Says little
but invests a quiet authority in his words,
gestures and actions.

BRÍD:

COLM’s wife, back seat control. Says
little but, like COLM, observes a lot.
Both, at times, can sit and observe with an
unnerving stillness.

LASAIRFHÍONA:


Their daughter, a druid’s apprentice.
Her actions and movements have a
ritualistic almost dance-like grace.



KEN:

British soldier, on special leave. A
mercenary at one time. Clever but burdened
with aggression and unresolved trauma.

EMMA:

KEN’s wife. Holding on to her idealism and
femininity.

ALAN:

English refrigerator salesman. A decent
fellow, not very bright.

LAURA:

ALAN’s wife. Has a few pretensions.

iv

setting





Holiday camp, Lofty Pines, in the Vendée region
of France. Three tents, of varying shape and
colour, on stage.
Stage right KEN and EMMA’s tent; stage left
ALAN and LAURA’s. Centre stage COLM and
BRÍD’s.
Tranquil wooded scenery, crooked maritime pines.



Dialogue occasionally interspersed with
monologues, or internal duologues, which exclude
the characters not concerned or who are not spot
lit at the time.
Monologues may be spoken or pre-recorded.

Time:

Early 1990s.

v

The Blood Of
Squirrels

Act 1

scene 1
Sound of child’s dry, irritating cough. COLM alone,
spotlit by the moon through the lofty pines. Slowly
raises hands with outstretched palms to a tree. Chants
in low, velvety, mysterious voice, in Irish (Gaelic).
COLM:



Iora rua, iora, iora! Iora rua, rua!
Casacht m’iníne chugat!
Casacht m’iníne chugatsa thuas!*



Slowly lowers his hands. Moon goes behind clouds.



Lights up. The following evening. Slanting rays of the
evening sun. COLM, BRÍD, KEN, EMMA, ALAN
and LAURA gathered around centre table. Bottles
of wine, sangria in a bowl, candles glowing on table
under large blue and white sun‑shade with Freedom of
France written on it.





(*Squirrel, squirrel, squirrel! Red squirrel!
Take my daughter’s cough! Take my daughter’s cough!)

EMMA:

Heard this awful thud in the middle of the night.
Thought a bomb had hit us. Really, I did!

KEN:

Lucky you was in the tent then, eh? Pine‑cone travelling
at … oh … 35 miles an hour … no joke, blossom!

ALAN:

Said nuffin’ ’bout pine‑cones in the insurance policy,
far as I recall.

BRÍD:

(Stirring bowl with ladle) Have some more sangria,
everybody.

1


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