by Eric Braman

A 10-Minute Play

Cast of Characters

BLUE            A Blue Hydrangea
PINK             A Pink Hydrangea
CAROLE      The Great Gardener (optional voiceover)
GEORGE     The Great Gardener’s Husband (optional voiceover)

Scene
A backyard garden.

Time
Late spring/early summer.

Lights up on a garden. A hydrangea bush with multiple heads of blossoms is seen center stage, all of them pink except one, which is blue. The blossoms are asleep. The sun rises at start of play waking the blossoms from their slumber.

PINK
Good morning world.

BLUE
Good morning sun.

PINK
Good morning dirt.

BLUE
Good morning butterfly.

PINK
Good morning little ants.

BLUE
Good morning Lilies and Roses and Jasmine.

PINK
Good morning Cherry Tree, good morning Kale!

BLUE
Good morning family.

PINK
(turning toward BLUE) Good morning – OH MY GROVE!

BLUE
What is it?

PINK
What happened to you?!

BLUE
What? Is my stamen showing?

PINK
No, it’s – I can’t believe it.

BLUE
What is it?! Am I infected? Is it aphids?! Oh god, get them off! Get them off!

PINK
Stop fussing. Stop flinching.

BLUE
Out with it! You look like you’ve seen a slug!

PINK
No, it’s not a pest. It’s a … Well, you’re … Blue.

BLUE
What?!

PINK
As blue as that morning sky, dear. You’re blue through and through. Every petal. I’ve never seen anything like it. I can hardly believe it’s you. Look there, in the bird bath.

(BLUE leans over and looks at reflection in water surface.)

BLUE
Wow. I’m …

PINK
Did you eat something?

BLUE
Nothing out of the ordinary. Just water from the ground and you know …carbon from the air. Same water and air as you, I think.

PINK
Well you must have had paint from the house dripped on you.

BLUE
No. Not that I recall.

PINK
Good Gardener in Heaven! You must have done something. I’ve never heard of a Hydrangea just turning blue out of the blue.

BLUE
I mean, there are blue Hydrangeas, right?

PINK
Sure, I’ve heard of blue Hydrangeas. But we are pink Hydrangeas. The Good Carole planted us as such, and no Hydrangea I’ve ever seen in this back yard has ever been blue.

BLUE
Are you sure I wasn’t always blue and we just never looked close enough?

PINK
You’re being absurd.

BLUE
Well, I don’t know.

PINK
You look ridiculous.

BLUE
I think I look … nice.

PINK
Nice?!

BLUE
Handsome, even.

PINK
Handsome?! A Hydrangea?! Handsome?!

BLUE
Yeah?

PINK
(laughing) I’ve never in all my days heard of a Hydrangea being … handsome! Beautiful? Of course. Pretty? Always. Stunning? I mean, I’ve heard it said once or twice. But handsome! Hah! I’ve never.

BLUE
You don’t have to be so cruel.

PINK
I’m sorry, dear. It’s just so unnatural.

(An uncomfortable silence.)

BLUE
I think I wished for this.

PINK
WISHED FOR THIS?! To be blue?! What on earth would make you wish to be blue?

BLUE
I don’t know. I guess I’ve always wanted to be blue. Like, since I was a tiny bud. There was something in me that never felt pink, you know?

PINK
That’s against the laws of nature. Carole planted us to match the yellow Irises and red Poppies. We are the splash of pink in this garden. You know how she likes warm colors.

BLUE
I know. I don’t wish to upset Carole, bless Her Greatness, but I can’t help but feel this is meant to be. I mean, I’ve had dreams—so many dreams—for years about looking up into the sky and seeing my reflection in its beautiful hue. I’ve had visions while we slumber in the cold of winter. Visions of waking up absolutely turquoise and looking down at the Thyme creeping below us to hear songs of “oohs” and “aahs” as each little white bud tells me how much they love the new view.

Maybe I manifested this!

PINK
Flowers don’t manifest. We blossom, wilt, hibernate, repeat. We follow nature’s cycle. We only live because Her Greatness, Carole, planted us here. To manifest would be a malicious betrayal of Her great design!

BLUE
Perhaps Her Greatness will love this. Perhaps Her Greatness always wished for me to be blue!

PINK
Flowers are not meant to change colors. Flowers are meant to stay the hue the Good Gardener planted at time of purchase. You are breaking the laws of lawn care.

BLUE
I can’t help it if I’m blue!

PINK
But you wished for this. You wished to break Carole’s heart. How dare you.

BLUE
You think this will break Carole’s heart?

PINK
Oh absolutely. There’s not a single blue flower in this garden. You’ll stick out like a sore thumb. Oh, I can hear those terrible Chrysanthemums now. “A blue flowah, why I nevah.” Oooooh … We’ll be the laughingstock of the yard. Thank compost we’re in the back.

Oh. This is why. This is why Carole put us back here. She knew we couldn’t handle the curbside!

BLUE
You can’t mean that. Carole put us back here because She spends more time here. She put us back here because we’re Her favorite.

PINK
We are Her favorite. Imagine when She comes to water us …

BLUE
She really might like it!

PINK
Or maybe She’ll chop your head right off. Into the incinerator with you. Or all of us. What if She takes all of us? One rotten head in the bunch … soon the whole bush will turn.

BLUE
Just because I turned blue doesn’t mean every pink Hydrangea will turn blue. You clearly don’t want to be blue and you’re pink as pink can be.

PINK
Because I have my wits about me! Because I’m strong. But what about those new buds on the edge. Oh, they’re so young and impressionable. They will surely turn blue.

BLUE
It took me six years to turn blue. And, I never wanted to be pink! Everyone around me was pink so I just followed suit. I didn’t know I had a choice. I think I’ve been pretending to be pink this whole time!

PINK
You take that back.

BLUE
No, I really think that I was pretending, this whole time, to be something I’m not! I’m blue! I am a blue blossom! I’m a handsome blue blossom!

PINK
(clutching chest) Oh my sepal!

BLUE
Hey backyard! LOOK OVER HERE! Check out the newest addition–

PINK
You shut your mouth right this instant.

BLUE
They’re going to see eventually, might as well get it out of the way. HEY RHODODENDRONS!

PINK
You stop it. Stop it. If I hear one more word out of you I’ll break your stem myself.

BLUE
You wouldn’t.

PINK
I’ll kick you right out of this bush, you hear me?

BLUE
Who put you in charge?

PINK
I am the oldest bud on this hedge, I was blossoming long before you were even a thought in Carole’s heart.

BLUE
You said we all lived in Carole’s great vision before we bloomed?

PINK
Of course, you did. WE ALL DID! That doesn’t give you seniority. This is my bush and so long as I’m in blossom you’ll follow my rules. Now, you unruffle your leaves or so help me …

BLUE
Or what? You’ll chop me out of the family? Leave a gaping hole in this bush? You think Carole will be happy when she comes out to see we’re asymmetrical?!

PINK
Carole, grant me patience …

BLUE
Oh, sibling, just look at me. Please. Look me in the eyes.

(PINK struggles, finally looks up.)

BLUE
Don’t you see it?

PINK
See what?

BLUE
Look deeper, you must see it. It’s me. This has always been me.

PINK Oh! Love, I’M SO CONFLICTED!!!!

BLUE
I know it’s hard. I know this is different. It’s scary for me too.

PINK
(crying) STOP DOING MY EMOTIONAL LABOR FOR ME!

BLUE
I just want you to see me and accept me for the blueness that I am. This is me.

PINK
I know. I know it’s you. It’s just … it’s going to take some time for me to … adjust.

(A moment of silence as BLUE and PINK embrace. The sound of a door being opened is heard and the faint sound of CAROLE’s humming arises in the distance.)

CAROLE
Good morning, flowers!

PINK
Holy peat moss! It’s Her Greatness. It’s Carole. Oh no, oh no, oh no, oh no!

BLUE
(suddenly in shock) It’s Carole.

PINK
She’s going to freak out. She’s going to lose her mind. She’s going to rip us right out of the ground. She’s going to KILL US ALL!!!

BLUE
It’s going to be fine. Everything will be fine.

PINK
This is the end. It was great knowing you, world. I wish I had more time. I wish I could watch the butterflies burst from their cocoons even just once more!

BLUE
We’re not going to die. I don’t think.

PINK
She’ll stop watering us. She’ll make us suffer for betraying her.

BLUE
Shoosh shoosh shoosh! Here she comes.

PINK
Uuuuugggghhhhhhhh…

(BLUE and PINK slowly look up to see CAROLE standing above them.)

CAROLE
Oh my word! What do we have here?!

PINK
We’re dead.

CAROLE
Why, you’ve turned blue, little one! I can’t believe it! George! George, get out here!

(BLUE and PINK watch as CAROLE runs back into the house.)

PINK
Oh god. It’s happening. She’s getting George so he can dig us up. I knew it!

BLUE
She wouldn’t.

PINK
I knew it. I knew it was unnatural. I knew she would hate it.

BLUE
They’re coming back. Calm down. You’ll be fine.

PINK
May Carole have mercy on our souls.

(BLUE and PINK’s attention follows GEORGE and CAROLE as they come to stand above them.)

CAROLE
It’s turned blue! Look at it!

GEORGE
My word. It has.

CAROLE
It’s … so …

GEORGE
Handsome.

CAROLE
Like it was always meant to be blue … I love it!

(BLUE looks over at PINK, smiles.)

BLUE
Like I was always meant to be.

(The lights fade as BLUE basks in their newfound pride.)

The End.


Eric Braman (they/them) is a queer poet, playwright, and performer based in Springfield, Oregon. This is the first publication opportunity for Braman. Their plays have been performed at the NW10 New Play Festival, the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, Tsunami Books of Eugene, and the University of Oregon campus. As a poet, Braman has performed at Oregon Country Fair and City of Eugene events, competed in the Big Foot Regional Poetry Slam and Eugene Poetry Slam, and collaborated on the album By Your Side with musician Cullen Vance. Braman serves as the Arts Education Program Manager with Lane Arts Council, is a producer for the NW10 New Play Festival at Oregon Contemporary Theatre, and is a member of artist collectives Operation Shadowbox and Dead Parrots Society. Follow them on Instagram @ericwilliambram or on Facebook at Eric Braman Artistry.