Monologues for women
(free for students & auditions)

from "Boston's Brothers in Liberty"

By G. L. Horton
copyright © 2004 Geralyn Horton

MARY, a young woman

Isn't all that freedom truly is, is a choice of masters?
That at least is more liberty than I'm like to have! And isn't love the cruelest master? Look what my sister Sarah bears with, for my sake, and for her children's sake. She would never stoop so low for herself! Is that why wives are so meek? For their children? The men parade and make speeches. How it hurts their pride, to buy where the English parliament says they must, instead of buying where it's cheapest, or where they will. They curse and say the king puts down their freedom. Freedom? Compared to mine? I cannot alter my dress without rebuke! Never once have I spoke my whole mind; my movements are under order from dawn to dark. Yet the parson and my lover and my sister Sarah? They all call me too free! I'm not free at all, that I can see! Yet what the crime was for which I am deprived of all liberty, unless it be the crime of Eve, I cannot guess.

SERENA, a young teen

I heard once there was a girl kidnapped by the savages. Her mother and father ware scalped, and the Indian brave threw her up on a horse and carried her off to live in a house made of sticks and blankets. She had little red babies, and rubbed them all over with bear grease so that they smelled just like wild animals. But when the white people found her, she wouldn't come home. She said she wasn't a real Indian, just adopted, and the Indians treated her more like a servant than like a daughter of the tribe: but still, she'd rather be with them than come back to town. Half naked, she was. Worse than a squaw. The woods are wild-- everything is different there. There are spirits out in the woods, but whether they are good or bad, I cannot tell. Some people think that as long as somebody's giving orders, all will be well. You have a place: you need only to stay in it. I think that if my mother gave the orders, all would be well. But on my own, or in hands that care for nothing--? What would become of me?

SARAH, SERENA's mother

What do I care who governs? Except that my man does. We are together in this, and joined to our neighbors, for once. They say near half the town is Tory: but that's not so, at least not here. Not near the docks. Those neighbors who blamed my Matt and called him lazy? They know better now: They daren't look down on us. The hand of the crown has come down and pushed them all into the gutter, too. How's an honest man to support his family when the port lies idle? Shame on King George and his tariffs-- but would we prosper were they repealed? Would Matt be content as the King's subject, then? I think Rebellion has gone too deep. But politics is like the weather to me, it blows this way and that, and who's to make sense of it? Seasons, and years, I understand--there are good years and bad. A decade back, Matt and I were doing well. We had a house of our own, and the landlord was willing to sell it to us as soon as we had a bit more saved. I kept a garden, and baked sweets to sell. The children had plenty to eat. I never had to slap them. We were a good family then, when we were prosperous. You ask me what would happen to us if Matt were caught-- who can tell? He could hang. It's true. Yet Conway Mainwaring was accounted no better than a beggarly rascal until the watch caught him beshitting the signs outside the Custom House. Now he's a hero, for the cause of the boycott! The Sons of Liberty went bail for him, and paid his fine, and set him up in a soft berth where he can make speeches on how the merchants must all sign the oath of Non-Importation, or be lower than turds, as he deems them. He being a mighty expert at shitcraft. I would not say so to the men, they are so hot to be playing at danger: but I expect it to be a lucky day for us if the officers don't take their bribe, but look our way. I want my Matt holding his head high, and near to me, not running off on some feckless adventure---. Gone to war? Why would there be war? We'll show them we mean to rule ourselves here, and they'll back off and leave us alone. But if there is war? I'll be steadfast. I'll keep us together till Matt comes back. And if he doesn't? It's no such terrible thing to be a widow. It's better than being wife to a man who's never satisfied.


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