Scene Twenty-Five:

Picking Up the Pieces

 

 NILE MAPs appear on the walls of the Space. On them green points and city names appear as temples to Osiris are built. LIGHTS up on ANUBIS. As he and NEPHTHYS speak, the ENSEMBLE actors prepare ISIS' BOAT. The boat is large enough to accommodate several Neters on the deck, and has doors at the bow and stern ends of the windowless chamber in the middle of the boat. The ENSEMBLE extend ropes from the front of the boat toward the CELEBRANTS. He is Born music fades. ANUBIS enters onto the boat's front deck as ENSEMBLE take their places on the ropes. ISIS enters and sits at the rear of the boat.

 ANUBIS:

We need some able-bodied, generous people to help pull the boat of Queen Isis. All hands please stand by. (Pause.) And Pull!

ENSEMBLE and AUDIENCE repeat this in rhythm as The Rain is Free music begins, and the BOAT moves.

NEPHTHYS:

   No one but Isis and a few others knew that inside each of the enamel and gold-covered boxes that were placed in the new temples was not a part of Osiris' body, but a replica of it, made so well by the art of Isis and Anubis that no one could have imagined it wasn't

really the King's own flesh. The coffin was placed inside the temple sanctuary, where it was guarded; and, in an outer shrine where all the people could see it, we consecrated a beautiful art image of the part of Osiris that had been found in that part of the river.

Commotion as the ENSEMBLE find, covered by river weeds, a part of OSIRIS' body. The BOAT stops. ENSEMBLE pass the body part, still covered, to ANUBIS, who looks under the vegetation, turns and reports to ISIS by gesturing at part of his own body. The regal front that ISIS has maintained until now crumples with the news, then she recovers herself. ANUBIS takes the body part and goes through the bow door into the BOAT. THOTH KHU appears, circling above the Space. Fade The Rain is Free MUSIC.

NEPHTHYS:

Of course, Isis wasn't leaving the real body parts of Osiris under any of these temples, Anubis was hiding them in a casket inside the boat, and preserving them. Isis was determined to find them all, and not just so she could finally honor and entomb the whole body in one place. It was absolutely necessary that she and Osiris do the act of love with all their power of intention one more time, because, in their last union -- (To ISIS:) -- is it permissible to talk about these things?

ISIS:

   Yes, certainly. They must find out everything in time. (To CELEBRANTS:) Please put down those ropes and listen for a while. I want to say something to those among you who don't believe Osiris. I tell you heart to hearts that I didn't believe him either! Were my fragrance and my song and what he called the face to melt the eyes of him worth so little that when Set came Osiris didn't resist at all, but even angled his neck up toward the blade? Would I have been pleased if Osiris had fought for one more night with me? Would I have shouted and smiled if instead of tapping Set with his heqa, he'd used it to crack him a good one across the brow, and knock him down? Yes. Yes! As long as I'm in this density of desire, yes!

If I were Osiris, I would have done something. As a woman, I do not understand what makes men play catch with death the way they do, and when the ball hits them they wear wood faces that say Nothing Is Wrong. Where is their respect for death? Their reverence for time? Why do I still have no child? Why has his seed not grown within me, even though he was inside me from the moment of our birth, even though he's flowed into me like a river for all these years, even though our intentions were so perfectly joined that when he saw and sang his life into me, and I felt the flood of his manhood, the seed shooting and growing in my field, why did the body of our manchild not take flesh and grow to fill what we saw? I understand the grand mechanics. Thoth can tell you more about this, about how Osiris was the passive male principle and Isis the active female. It's all true, and deep, but below where my eyes are, I don't care. How hollow it feels when we see, as the world begins to see now, what the other in my life can never give, can never do. Not even the gods are free of this sorrow. We know how much is possible, we see how much less is there. It all began with Osiris and me. The cold yawn in the pit of the stomach. It's time to move.

ENSEMBLE:

He is born! (Repeated work chant, elongated on "born".)

NEPHTHYS:

Thoth?

NEPHTHYS boards the boat as ENSEMBLE and CELEBRANTS begin to pull it across the Space. THOTH KHU now descends to the area above the boat, and GRAPHICs of OSIRIS' chakra column appear as THOTH's narration begins.

THOTH:

   You remember that when you saw the love union of Isis and Osiris, there were flashes of red, orange, yellow and green as Isis awaken- ed her mate's four lower energy centers. But Osiris had no strength to go higher, so his passion burst in the green ray of the heart. Isis and Osiris had planted their son Horus as a physical and emotional being, so Horus is growing inside Isis now and he will be born only as a physical body a few months from now. But for Horus to be mind and soul also, his parents must open his centers of speech, vision and wisdom. The process of bringing Horus in, of activating him completely on the earth plane, requires another act of spiritual love.

THOTH KHU vanishes and THOTH enters from inside the boat. ENSEMBLE actor passes a small papyrus scroll to ANUBIS, who scans it and hands it to THOTH. ANUBIS jumps from the boat and exits. THOTH moves forward in the boat, touches NEPHTHYS' arm and nods to her. She goes to the back of the boat to engage ISIS in silent conversation. THOTH's next speech is addressed to the CELEBRANTS, yet he keeps looking THOTH astern, to make sure that ISIS is well distracted.

THOTH:

We have gathered 12 of the 14 pieces of the King's body. We have all of him except the most important part, and one other part. We know where the most important piece is. This is it, and right now we're heading toward it (SACRUM KHU appears above ISIS, where she can't see it): it's the djed, the sacrum of Osiris, which joins the legs to the torso and anchors the whole energy column of the body. We have to find it. Nothing else happens without it.

ISIS looks at the DJED KHU behind her. It vanishes before she can see it. She then moves toward the front of the BOAT, unnoticed by THOTH as he speaks to the CELEBRANTS:

THOTH:

Anubis is sniffing out the other missing piece, the mystery part. Can you guess which one it is? I'll give you a hint. It's the one that makes some people giggle. Don't be shy. The two lovers aren't--

ISIS:

The two lovers aren't what? What are you talking about up here?

THOTH:

Lines that keep coming to me, perhaps a poem looking for a voice.

ISIS:

May we hear it?

THOTH:

Certainly. It's not much, but I'll be happy to tell it to you as I take off. I can aid the search better from the air. (To ENSEMBLE:) Pull in here, where people are already gathering to greet us, and make ready to build the temple. Here.

THOTH dives behind BOAT, exits. THOTH KHU appears, flying above the boat. THOTH KHU speaks as he ascends:

THOTH:

The lovers live in rings and falls of water

As each pours liquid kisses to the other,

Tears and love's juices, sweat and seeds,

The fire breath that passion needs.

Beyond, within the flow that bodies feel,

A stream of purest light completes the seal

That can be seen when the aim of love is real.

During the following THOTH KHU guides the ENSEMBLE to find the sacrum of OSIRIS. They bring it toward the BOAT and hand it to ANUBIS, who looks at ISIS, then takes the sacrum inside the boat. ISIS is calm, no longer reacting in wild grief. ENSEMBLE and CELEBRANTS pull the BOAT to a stop at the wall of stone BLOCKS, coil the ropes and fold down the stairs that ISIS and NEPHTHYS use to disembark. ENSEMBLE now begin to build the temple pylon from the stone BLOCKS, and may engage CELEBRANTS to assist them.

 

Curious about that missing Mystery Body Part?

Tune in The Neter News Gossip Report, For Mature Audiences Only

 

Or you can help Isis Dedicate a Temple to Osiris

 

Or See How Isis and Osiris bring in Horus

 

Or you can Choose from other Scenes

 

Or go to Stories of Thoth and Ma'at or the Playbill 

 

Copyright 2002 Dan Furst

 

 

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