#31plays31days Y6 #17. Please Don’t Eat the Flowers


PLEASE DON’T EAT THE FLOWERS – A Guided Tour by Paul Hagen


URSULA is leading a tour group through a botanical garden that is richly arrayed with a rich variety of flora.


URSULA: Please don’t eat the flowers, though the daisies look delicious,

And, I dare say the nasturtium seem like they might be nutritious,

It’s can be hard to see the snapdragons and stop salivating,

Every day not-eating edelweiss is so frustrating.

The hyacinths might make you hungry, you may crave a crocus,

And sometimes the hibiscus seems to casts some hocus pocus,

So, overall, please resist the allure of amaryllis;

The way all must struggle with some urges when they fill us.


URSULA begins to nuzzle flowers and rub them against her face.


You may be tempted, yes, to give the lavender a lick,

To feed upon the freesia even if it makes you sick,

To snack on some geraniums like you were eating supper

Or how divine it is to dine on dahlias – that’s an upper!

Don’t make a meal of marigolds — though, wouldn’t that be great?

Or ramming in as many mum as you can masticate?

So don’t suck on sunflowers, not even on the seeds;

Keep saying to yourself: this isn’t what my body really needs!


URSULA begins actively eating the flowers. Someone from the tour group heads off to seek help.


‘Cause sometimes binging on begonias feels like what you want –

That or you devouring daffodils, despite those that will taunt

You for ingesting irises and trying to taste tulips

It’s sort of just like ordering up mint-but-hold-the-juleps.

What can I say? Some simply have an appetite for asters!

And when it comes to scillas, well, their stomachs are their masters!

They’d could consume cockscomb or forage for foxglove for hours!

So though they look delightful, dammit, please don’t eat the flowers!


URSULA is a mess, with petals all over her face, hair and dress. The member of the tour group who left returns with a pair of SECURITY GUARDS. She points to URSULA, as if to say “That’s the one.” They each take one of her arms, though as they drag her off, she keeps desperately grabbing at blossoms and trying to shove them in her mouth as LIGHTS FADE TO BLACK.


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#31plays31days Y6 #16. The Dolly Made Me Do It!!!


THE DOLLY MADE ME DO IT – A Short Excuse by Paul Hagen


TILDA enters. She is an older woman — dressed like a little girl — and wearing some serious “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?” type make-up. She drags her doll – which looks like a nightmare given corporeal form – center stage and faces the audience.


TILDA: When they asked why I pushed my baby brother down the stairs,

The very first thing that I thought I might say is: “Who cares?

If he was smart, could’ve saved himself. Instead he blew it.”

But instead what I said is, “My dolly made me do it.

When they asked me why I set my older sister’s bed on fire,

I wanted to say, “It’s because she’s ugly and a liar.”

Instead I figured, since I had a story, I’d stick to it.

And so I gave a shrug and said, “My dolly made me do it.”

When they asked me why I put the Drano in my daddy’s scotch,

The actual answer is that when I had to watch him scratch his crotch

Disgusted me far more than if I’d puked then had to chew it.

It seemed far easier to say, “My dolly made me do it.”

When they asked me why I wrenched the steering wheel away from Momma,

Which ran us right into a tree, I couldn’t have been calmer.

Cuz even though the window broke Mom’s neck when she went through it,

I knew I could just tell them that: “My dolly made me do it.”

When they asked me why I ran my Auntie over with the mower,

I would’ve liked to point out: she just happened to move slower

than the mower — yes, she moved as if the lawn were were with glue. It

would not have helped me; so I said, “My dolly made me out it.”

When they asked me why I jostled Uncle at his table saw

Which caused him to fall forward, knocked the blade into his jaw,

And why I didn’t bother to call someone for rescue: It

was for fun, but nonetheless said, “Dolly made me do it.”

When they asked me why I greased the tub so Grandma would fall down,

I could have said I was just sick of looking at her frown

And I hated how her tea smelled revolting when she’d brew it;

But that seemed petty so I said, “My dolly made me do it.

When they asked why I let Grandpapa forget to take his pill,

I could’ve said that I believe when people are that ill

There is no point in waiting for more age just to accrue it.

But rather than explain, I said, “My dolly made me do it.”

When they asked about the razors in the apple I gave Teacher

I almost said that it felt like a potent way to reach her:

A sharp critique of learning and the way that she’d pursue it.

That might have seemed extreme. I said: “My dolly made me do it.

And when my Social Worker showed up dead and with one eye

They came to me, excitedly, to ask if I knew why.

I didn’t say, “I guess she might have fell on a pool cue.” It

Seemed much nicer just to say, “My dolly made me do it.”

And then there came the day when I, at last, attacked my dolly:

They asked me why, unblinking I, just laughed and said, “Well, golly,

You don’t like how I marched when I let dolly do the drumming.

I guess if all of that was bad: the bitch just had it coming.


TILDA rips the head off her dolly. LIGHTS OUT.

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#31plays31days Y6 #15. A Dildo for Goldilocks


A DILDO FOR GOLDILOCKS – A Short Play by Paul Hagen


SASSY is a large drag queen, who is chewing gum behind the counter of Greenwich Village shop, which sells a variety of drag gear and sex toys; in particular, there is a spectacular array of dildos under a long glass counter. As SASSY speaks, she pulls from the case various examples to show to GOLDILOCKS, a teenager who is clearly very nervous.


SASSY: The thing about a sex toy is, you want one that’s just right.

Since, like a lover, it’s what you’ll come home to every night.

Just think of me like I’m your Willy Wonka, Goldilocks;

Together we will find just the right sweet to fill your box.


SASSY takes out a very small dildo and a very large dildo.


Now first thing, there’s the size: you may be tempted to start small,

But trust me, after not too long, you’re gonna say, “That’s all?”

A big one, on the other hand, will fill you to the max,

But stretch too much and some parts irretrievably relax.


SASSY now removes one dildo that’s a long series interlocking spheres and another that has an intricate looking arm.


Then there are the shapes — you never know which one will get you hot:

Curved or straight or bulging bulbs — each hits a different spot.

Some come equipped with arms to stimulate outside the box

They’ve even got ones made to look like some animals’ cocks.


SASSY now removes a dildo made of glass and one that appears made of some metallic, space age material like a dildo designed by Jeff Koons.


You might also give thought to what your dildo’s made of

It should be something beautiful; something that you can love.

But be careful if you go for something delicate like glass,

You chip it and then use the thing? It might slice up your ass.


SASSY now produces some dildos that have the appearance of power tools.


And do not underestimate the power of vibration,

It may send just the right push-you–over-the-edge sensation,

Be careful, though, if you vibrate for too hard and too long

You might get so you can’t find satisfaction in a schlong.


One by one, SASSY removes the rest of the dildos from the case.


But most of all pick one that, sexually speaking, speaks to you,

The one you want to firmly press against you and then through,

The one that you’ll associate with finally feeling fine,

The one you want inside you—


GOLDILOCKS lets out a pitiful yelp and runs, sobbing from the sex shop. SASSY lovingly and covetously caresses the dildoes.


SASSY: You’re all mine.





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#31plays31days Y6 #14. A Wooden Hand?


A WOODEN HAND? – A Short Play by Paul Hagen


VESELKA shuffles into her cramped, old kitchen, hunched and wearing a clearly wooden hand. She puts on the kettle for tea, turns to the audience and sighs, speaking in a heavy Slavic accent.


VESELKA: I am think you wondering how I get wooden hand.

I tell you. I explain to you. You try to understand.

And take with you this lesson, if you do take anything;

You should be very careful about where you put your ring.

When I have hand, I take off ring when time to wash the dish.

To never, ever, ever, ever lose it is my wish.

I lay it in a little cup – makes happy little ding

Each time it land in little cup, my shiny little ring.

But problem happen one time – look – I’m keeping a clean house,

But now and then sometimes you get a little friend, the mouse.

I no afraid of mouse; I leave them do their tiny little dance,

But when one ran across my foot, I – whew! – throw up my hands,

In doing – I hit little cup, and ring – it bounces out,

And when I see it flying – oh! – I give a little shout.

The ring, I do my best to try to show you, to explain:

It bounces off the window and go – boom! – right down the drain.

Like automatic, my arm go after it in a hurry,

But soon as I get arm in drain, I start – a bit – to worry,

Sometimes things go in holes, then you want out: eh, no such luck.

So out I’m pulling right away, but – uh oh! – I am stuck.

My husband, meanwhile, hear me shouting when I hit the cup

Comes rushing in from other room – he struggles to get up:

And seeing me, he think I have my hand caught in disposal:

He make bigger mistake than me accepting his proposal!

He thinks it’s on, and flip the switch; he hope it let me go.

It turns on! Pain! Blood! I pass out. Wake up? One hand. You know.

And “Why the wood?” so many ask – and not some plastic… crap;

I tell you like I tell them – I just like the way it tap.

It make a happy little sound when I rest on the sink.

Is like a wooden version of the way my ring make clink.

And, oh, don’t let me let you go before I say one thing…

You’ve got to know… I’ve got say… what happened to my ring!

Is really so amazing! Just believe me! You will see!

What happened when they open up the sink – oh there’s the tea.


The kettle whistles and VESELKA goes through an unhurried process of pouring and steeping her tea, sweetening it with honey and settling down with it at the table.


Where was I? Oh they take pipe out: they hope they can detach

My arm from the disposal – there’s my ring – without a scratch!

I clean it and I try it on the hand that I still had.

But fingers on that hand are just too fat. Oh well. Too bad.


VESELKA sips her tea.


So take with you this lesson, if you do take anything;

You should very careful about where you put your ring.


VESELKA gestures with her wooden hand; in doing so, it comes loose and falls to the floor with a thud. LIGHTS OUT.




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#31plays31days Y6 #13. It Could’ve Been the Champagne…


IT COULD’VE BEEN THE CHAMPAGNE… – A Short Play by Paul Hagen


Lights are low as CHARLOTTE stumbles into a hotel room. Light catches on the sparkle of her dress and her jewelry, and elsewhere in the room we see it reflect off a crystal chandelier, a silk bedsheet, a silver bathroom fixture, a bucket of champagne cooling on ice. Otherwise, the stage is suffused with a velvety blackness.


CHARLOTTE: It could’ve been the champagne or the way he said hello

That made me feel instinctively that I could trust him so.

It could’ve been the music or the rhythm of our dance

That made me think that maybe, somehow he’d be worth a chance.


CHARLOTTE places her sparkling handbag on a table and begins to take off her gloves.


It could’ve been the champagne or the volume of the crowd,

That let me be so loose with him, that made me get so loud,

It could have been how his smile lit the gloom around the bar,

That made me want to stay with him and get into his car.


CHARLOTTE leaves her gloves on the table and pours herself a glass of champagne.


It could’ve been the champagne or the quiet in the park,

The way the stars stood out like Christmas tinsel in the dark.

It could have been the way his breath was hot against my neck,

That made me, finally, say to myself, “Why not? What the heck?”


CHARLOTTE sips her champagne.


It could’ve been the champagne or how close to me he stood

That let me know that things were just about to get real good.

It could’ve been the way his fingers pressed a touch too tight,

That let me know that this was bound to be a special night.


CHARLOTTE finishes her champagne and removes her necklace and earrings.


It could’ve been the champagne or the way that he exhaled,

The moment he and I both knew his heart had been impaled.

Perhaps it was the way our eyes met when he realized

That I would be the girl that he would be with ‘til he died.


CHARLOTTE steps out of her sparkling gown.


It could’ve been the champagne or ride home in the car

That let me know I’ll never be the same; I’ve come too far.

And it could be this the air in here or something in the light,

But I know what I’ll dream of when I go to sleep tonight.


CHARLOTTE walks into the bathroom and flips a light switch by the sink; it reveals that she is covered with blood on her upper arms, neck and decolletage. She stares into the mirror and begins to wash off the blood as LIGHTS FADE TO BLACK.

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#31plays31days Y6 #12. The Power in the Spell


THE POWER IN THE SPELL – A Short Play by Paul Hagen


Firelight jaggedly illuminates the trees that ring a clearing, in which we see an ornate old wagon. In its doorway stands THE WITCH, wearing a dress made of knotted fabric that makes her appear as gnarled as the forest that surrounds her. Across the clearing stands JASMINE, a slim figure, dressed in white. She quivers in the moonlight and looks warily from THE WITCH to the fire, over which hangs a bubbling cauldron.


THE WITCH: You come to me in darkest night, here in an ancient wood,

You come to me, though you’ve been warned: you never ever should.

You come, though you’re afraid, it’s not the cold that makes you shake,

You come, although your family does not think you’re awake.

You come because someone has left you very badly burned.

You gave your heart to someone just to see that caring spurned.

You come seeking revenge, and I can help even the score.

But you must be aware that with revenge, there comes much more.


JASMINE trembles and opens her mouth to accept THE WITCH’s terms. THE WITCH nods and holds up a finger to silence her. She moves to the cauldron, reaching into her garment to produce each ingredient as she tosses it into the cauldron.


Then, let him taste chill of moss that froze upon the forest floor.

And let him swallow tears from eyes that can’t see anymore.

And let him eat the shells from hatchlings left to die in nests.

Let him absorb the phlegm dislodged from cancer-ridden chests.

Now simmer ‘til the the chill, loss, longing, sickness all combine,

And save it ‘til you’re near him and can slip it in his wine.

So, here, my dear: a bottle full of lesson he will learn.

At last it will be him who knows what it feels like to burn.


JASMINE reaches out to take the potion that THE WITCH has brewed and ladled into a glass vial, but her hand shakes and she pulls it away.


You’re wise to fear, for magicks can be powerful, it’s true.

Some say whate’er you wish, it will come back, threefold on you.

Or is it me who makes you hesitate to take the potion?

Ha! Me?! A humble servant of the moon: just like the ocean?

You wonder how you’ll pay me? I’ll accept a favor owed.

I’m like a farmer in that way — I reap what I have sowed.

Where and when and what and how, why, that I cannot tell.

Perhaps it’s that not-knowing that puts power in the spell…


JASMINE considers, and finally takes the potion from THE WITCH, who begins to laugh with wicked glee as JASMINE flees from the clearing and LIGHTS FADE TO BLACK.

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#31plays31days Y6 #11. The Perils of Cheap Lube


THE PERILS OF CHEAP LUBE – A Public Service Announcement by Paul Hagen


PUCKISH is a strange, nude gnome-like creature, sits upon a pyramid of things that are dry: sandpaper, crackers, sponges, starfish, et cetera. He beckons to the audience.


PUCKISH: Come, listen up, dear audience, and any who can hear,

Because I’ve got a message that may one day save your rear.

If you want to be able to extend yourself at will,

If you want to give visitors to your back door a thrill,

If you’re to be the kind of host that goes to any length,

Then you are gonna need something with slipperiness and strength,

Enough to make the roundest hole accommodate a cube,

Trust me, my friend, that – in the end – you’re gonna need some lube.


PUCKISH stands atop the pile, bits of debris and detritus slipping out from under his feet as he struggles to maintain his footing.


Now there may come a moment when you’re at Ye Olde Drug Store,

When you look at lubes that costs less and others that cost more,

You’ll wonder, “Why not just go with the cheaper one and hope?”

You’ll wonder why you can’t just use some lotion or some soap.

You’ll spring for the cheap lube at least, you know it isn’t wise,

When dealing with things down below – to try and improvise,

And it might get your door ajar, might get your guests inside,

But before long, I promise, you’ll be in for a rough ride.


PUCKISH loses his balance and careens down the pyramid on his bottom, hooting in pain as he scoots. He lands at the bottom in evident pain.


For when lube’s inexpensive, it just isn’t made to last,

It may seem slick at first but it, for sure, turns sticky fast,

Increasing friction when and where you need that friction least,

And leaves you with a dry pork chop when you need your pig greased,

And soon you’ll find your rear on fire, your fanny all in flames,

Like you’d sat on the torch they light at the Olympic Games.

So, please, reach for the good stuff — in a bottle, tub or tube:

And that’s the one way to avoid the perils of cheap lube.


PUCKISH picks himself up off the floor, bows, and tenderly rubs his bottom as as he limps off stage and LIGHTS FADE TO BLACK.

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