The Tale of Peter
Written by V.C. Linde
'The Tale of Peter' is an original play inspired by the Beatrix Potter books, 'The Tale of Peter Rabbit' and 'The Tale of Benjamin Bunny'. The idea came from the impact that the death of Peter Rabbit's father had on the other characters in the book. The human characters in the play of Peter and Mr Rabbit have similar experiences to those in Beatrix Potter's books but that is where the overlap ends.
The play has two male characters, Peter and Mr. Rabbit who both speak directly to the audience and never address each other, the play is character driven with little action. There are five scenes each showing Peter at a different age from seven to twenty years old.
- - Extract from Scene Four - -
Mr. Rabbit: I don't know if it was worse for her or for the kids. It was about six months ago that I started to wonder about it. Not that I was really very serious back then. Something wasn't right, I had four children, a wife and a job. I provided for them well enough but it felt as if something was going to go wrong.
And I suppose that it did.
The last time that I saw any of them was very early in the morning. She woke the kids up to wave me off. The girls were all too sleepy to say anything except goodbye to me. But Peter was wide awake, he wanted to come on the adventure with me. I told him that I would take him when he was a little bit bigger as long as he behaved himself. It is strange how your age can creep up on you. Looking down on small children who see you as someone as old as the trees makes you realise that you’re not as young as you may want to be. I can remember being young but the ideas I had back then are not as clear as they once were.
- - Extract from Scene Five - -
Peter: When I have children I don’t want to whisper. I want my children to be different to me, so they’re not scared of how they’ll grow up and what they will become. The whispering makes it harder. When I asked my sisters to tell me about father they told me I was being selfish and not to upset mother. She used to be much happier and I don’t understand why she won’t talk about being happy, and why it just makes her sad.
I like to run really fast over the hills. Near to our house there are lots of trees and if you’re a really good runner you can go super-fast and not run into any of them. It’s hard because all of the dead branches try to catch you and trip you up or hold tight onto you. No one can stop me when I’m running. I can’t hear people calling me inside or telling me to slow down or friends wanting me to go somewhere else. I get to choose the direction and keep on going - for as long as I want. Until I’m exhausted and I stop and rest. I can stay very still until it’s all stopped moving and I can breathe and then I start to run again - really, really fast. If you run fast enough you can stay ahead of everyone else and they can’t chase you and change you.
For any further extracts or information about this original play please feel free to get in touch with me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks!
<All text copyright of v.c. linde>