Scene Thirty:

I'm Not a Clown, Mother

 

The Royal Palace. ISIS at one of the stone tables, blending oils. I'm Looking Forward to You theme distant as HORUS enters. ISIS notices the difference in his walk.

ISIS:

You've met your uncle Set.

HORUS:

Most impressive.

ISIS:

You don't have a mark on you.

HORUS:

Nothing that shows. He suggested we entertain each other after you've shown me how to treat cuts.

ISIS:

That's uncommonly helpful of him. Why would he do that? It's not spring, is it? No.

HORUS:

Mother, I don't understand. Set is the one who killed my father. Twice! But -- I like him. He's the only one who -- I don't even know the word for it. My body rocks back and shakes, and I smile.

ISIS:

He makes you laugh. He's funny.

HORUS:

What does that mean?

ISIS:

Ho. How to explain it? You know the men in the market who wear strange clothes and jump around and juggle fruit and gourds, and everyone smiles and giggles and goes ha ha ha ho ho ho?

HORUS:

Oh. The clowns. That's funny?

ISIS:

To some people.

HORUS:

Then why don't I like it? I think it's silly.

ISIS:

For you, yes. I know.

HORUS:

The only thing I think about is shooting the arrow that kills Set. I watch it fly, and hit the center of his throat. There is a burst of blood and surprise. And he falls. It's all I see. Everything else is distracting.

ISIS:

Even the Map of Light? Will you be ready to teach it tomorrow?

HORUS:

I believe so.

ISIS:

I hope so. And please. (She begins to exit.) Make it entertaining. A dull man talking about the sky is unbearable. Anyone who can talk for twenty minutes about the stories in the stars without making me laugh may not be ready to fight Set.

HORUS:

You mean I have to put some jokes in?

ISIS:

Yes. Of course. Do you want me and these good people to sit through a star lesson that is boring because there is no laughter in it? (To CELEBRANTS:) Am I right? It has to be fun and light, right? (CELEBRANTS usually agree.)

HORUS:

I came here to play the hero. I'm not a clown, mother.

ISIS:

And why not? Jokes are the hardest thing for you to do because they require a temporary doubleness of mind that is hard for one as single-minded as you. With Set, jokes are a weapon. He'll kill you with jokes -- unless your jokes are better.

ISIS exits and HORUS walks through the Space, his eyes up as MAP OF LIGHT appears above in the dome of the Space. The NETERS enter as HORUS refers to them.

HORUS:

Nephthys was mysterious as always. She wouldn't tell me anything I didn't already know, so I asked her a different favor instead. If I were in mortal danger and needed to know a secret, would she speak? She said she would. So that's a critical weapon in the bag. Anubis was not much help. He said he was all nose and no eyes, that he could -- what did you say?

ANUBIS:

You mean how I cast my nose like a sunbeam level with the earth?

HORUS:

Yes.

ANUBIS:

Well. I'm glad you like the words. My body just isn't built for bending upward, as yours is. Why ask me when your best source is . . . ?

HORUS:

Thoth.

ANUBIS:

You're a bird, he's a bird. Ask him. Do it.

HORUS:

And Thoth was of course most informative. Thank you.

THOTH:

You're welcome. Are you ready?

HORUS:

I believe so.

ISIS:

(Entering, with NEPHTHYS:) We'll see about that.

HORUS:

Honored teachers and guests, thank you for arranging your endless schedule of doing this play to be here tonight. (To ISIS:) I'm going to raise your temperature in particular with this story, young lady.

ISIS:

The brass of you. Has brass been invented yet?

HORUS:

Yes. This morning.

ISIS:

Are we ready? (All nod. To HORUS:) The boldness of you. I am your mother.

HORUS:

That's hard to believe. You're as supple as a fox, as elegant as a cat. You do catch the eye. If I weren't your son, I'd be on you like a crocodile after a heifer.

ISIS:

Horus! (To other NETERs. Half laughing.) Let us proceed. You do stand your ground like a dog in a small yard. Well done, Anubis. Thoth?

THOTH:

If the clarity in your eye is equal to the nerve in your mouth, the next few minutes should be worth hearing. Proceed.

 

 Want to see how Horus gets ready for the Showdown?

 

You can visit The Map of Light.

 

Or join The Neters in the War Room.

 

If you crave Some Action Now, you can go straight to Doom in Dunqul.

 

Or you can Choose from other Scenes

 

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

 

 

Copyright 2002 Dan Furst

 

 

Next Page               When It Rained Main Page                  Emerald Tablet