(Lea plays with dolls in a way reminiscent
of the beginning of the play. The veil/sheet is also present. Toini enters
and helps Lea stretch and fold the sheet.)
TOINI: Ill travel everywhere. Rome,
Paris, Berlin. Just think. Thats the life I was born for.
LEA: What about Aulis?
TOINI: Hes got his research, blood chemistry, forever and ever.
What would I do at that villa? No thank you. Invite guests over, show
them around the garden, check the air temperature, water temperature,
ooh and aah at the sunshine, ooh and aah when the sun goes away. I despise
all that. At the villa trivial things become the main thing. Just living
day to day.
LEA: So what isnt?
TOINI: Its the lazy and lifeless life of sluggish people. I like
SIIRI: (Enters carrying luggage; its Eeros.) Now that Im
here applying for this job I thank my lucky stars that Ive left
that trash behind. The shopkeeper wasnt bad, gave me a good recommendation,
too, and the missus always warned me to act decent and everythingd
be all right, Ill be a real person someday.
(Lea hands Siiri the folded sheet, Siiri
LEA: So whos this German of yours?
TOINI: Hes Polish.
LEA: What does he do? Whats he doing here?
TOINI: Why dont you ask who his father is, how much he makes, how
many brothers and sisters, are they good people, while youre at
LEA: You have Aulis.
TOINI: Aulis has all humanity.
LEA: Are you traveling with him?
TOINI: With who? Lea, stay out of my private life.
SIIRI: (Enters dragging more luggage.) I could have had a husband in the
country, a carpenters apprentice even, but no country boys for me.
All the poverty and misery there, to add to it and lots of children to
boot. And if you dont love him, why marry him?
TOINI: Oh, Siiri, what do you know about love at your age?
SIIRI: Ive been in love before. A university student who always
came in to buy tobacco. A very handsome boy. Never even noticed me. But
dreaming about him kept me from looking at anyone else. A healthy thing,
EERO: (entering) All right. Look after the house. Take the children out,
but dont take them far, the roads out there are full of rocks and
gravel that will wear out your shoes. And dont scuff your soles,
set your foot down carefully, like this. Herring is the cheapest food,
you can buy that now and again. And sunlight isnt as healthy as
LEA: Well be fine here.
(Eero shakes Leas hand, punches
Toini in the shoulder. Toini punches him back.)
TOINI: See, thats the way to handle
men. If they hit you, hit them back.
EERO: What a girl. (Exits.)
TOINI: Did you know that Aulis and Eero fought early in the summer? At
our place; over you, I think.
LEA: (arranges the dolls on the bed) Impossible.
TOINI: I think Eero hit Aulis. And Eero shouted: To hell with your
morality! I walked in and they were facing each other off. Eero
was upset, and he left. Aulis was depressed for days, and I tried to tease
him and shake him out of it, and then I teased him about you.
LEA: You make me ill. Dont mess things up.
(A waltz begins to play. Eero enters
and bows to Lea. Ester enters dancing with Aulis. Toini freezes out of
EERO: I have always associated Midsummer
LEA: And you believe that you can make it come by telling it to? What
if when it comes its only a Midsummer nights dream that makes
you scream when you wake?
(The dancers exchange partners. Lea dances
for a moment with Aulis.)
ESTER: Its dangerous to withdraw
from everything. You never know. To be alone, thats to play your
hand badly, let everything ride on a single card.
(Now Aulis dances with Toini, and Ester
has gone to push her hatstand husband around. The waltz gradually crumbles
away. But it remains with Lea, she goes on humming it as she climbs into
bed with her children.)
LEA: Well be fine here. Just mom
and the kids. Boy. Pious. Girl. The weeks will pass so wonderfully. Mommy
will tell you a story. Once upon a time there came a man from faraway
lands to visit mommy, a man, do you understand children, good. Boy understands.
A man who mommy could have loved and who could have loved mommy. The man
said to mommy: Come away with me, I will fill your life with happiness,
that true happiness that two people who were made for each other can attain.
I wont, I say. I will give you all the riches
in the world, power and splendor. I wont go, I
say. I wont trade my children for happiness or riches or power.
Live your life. What is my life? This is it. What
is wealth? This is it. Yes, children, my destiny is you.
(Lea takes the children into her arms,
spins around with them, arranges them in the doll closet. A light has
appeared at Eeros desk. Eero is back. Eero is bent over the light,
writing something. Lea goes to Eero.)
LEA: What were you just writing, show
EERO: None of your business.
LEA: (recognizes the promissory note) Do we have to borrow money?
EERO: As if we hadnt before.
LEA: What were you writing under the light? Whose name was that?
EERO: Shut up or Ill hit you.
LEA: Hit me than. I want to know.
EERO: Why shouldnt I tell you? Its Auliss name. I have
LEA: I dont believe it, you mustnt. Youre forging his
EERO: Stop it. Ive done it before.
LEA: Does Aulis know?
EERO: How could he not know? Hes paid, too. What does five or ten
thousand mean to him?
LEA: Eero, I wont let you do it.
EERO: I wont let you interfere in my business.
(Eero yanks on Leas arm so that
she goes careening into the doll closet. There is a noise like a cable
being pulled too taut. Eero pulls her to her feet, twists her arms and
then chokes her. A light has come on in the doll closet, it sways back
and forth. Maybe a local rain shower could hit it now.)
LEA: Dont strangle me, come to
your senses. (Eero loosens his grip and stares at Lea as if waking from
sleep, looks at her thoughtfully.) Thats right, Eero, no more. Not
like this. For your own sake. This is dangerous.
EERO: I know it.
LEA: A button came off your coat. Ill sew it back on.
EERO: You notice everything. (Takes off his coat.)
LEA: This wont do. Give the promissory note away.
EERO: I wont.
LEA: Ill call Aulis. Hit me, but dont forge other peoples
EERO: Listen, dont take that tone with me, its dangerous.
Im warning you, stay out of my affairs.
LEA: I understand. But there are things that shouldnt be affected
by whats in my best interest. This is about you and matters that
are above us both.
EERO: Oh hell. (Takes the note and tears it up.) There.
(Eero puts on his coat, hes wearing
it when Lea breaks the thread. Eero exits. Siiri enters with a tea tray.)
SIIRI: The missus is already so old-fashioned.
Nobodys that petty in society any more. Honesty is a good thing,
in a way, and Ill all for it, but its for the lower orders.
But communisms another kettle of fish, where you say whats
yours is mine. Money has no owner. Not much else does either.
LEA: Where did you read that?
SIIRI: Oh, somewhere.
LEA: Eeros behind this.
(Lea sees Eero and Siiri meeting and
SIIRI: Look at me, what! A pretty young
girl. Am I pretty?
EERO: Youre drunk.
SIIRI: Here we stand at the threshold
of a new era. We have new philosophies and new morals and the old customs
and beliefs have become absurd. In the country when the hired hands and
drifters talked about it I turned my back and refused to listen. But when
a cultured person says something to me, I listen and believe.
LEA: How can he fall so quickly under those young girls spell?
(Siiri exits with her tea tray. Mother
and Toini fade into view.)
MOTHER: My daughter, you have been abundantly
blessed in this life. The Lord has given you a good man and fortunate
circumstances that will protect you as few people are protected on this
TOINI: Aulis fell in love with you at first sight, and when he told Eero
about it, Eero began to pretend he was in love too. Aulis held back, for
he was just breaking off his engagement. And you, sensing nothing and
guessing nothing, took Eero. The mistake was yours.
MOTHER: Have you given thanks for all the good things you have received?
TOINI: Everything here is coming apart at the seams, and you pretend not
to see it. Youre afraid to face up to the facts, to see that your
house is tottering in the wind.
(Lea remains alone. She goes to the doll
closet and stops its tottering. Eero passes her on his way to his desk.)
EERO: You just go ahead and work for
the betterment of humanity in your nursery. You wont change people.
People are what they are. And how long do you think this life lasts? Forever?
Youve barely opened your eyes when they close again. You saw what
you saw. The others stay here and live. And no one notices that youre
gone. No one. By the way, did you fill out that cremation form? Do it.
Im not going to stand around freezing my bare head at your grave,
if you die in the winter.
(Eero goes to his desk and busies himself
with a passion. Lea speaks to her children, as in a lullaby.)
LEA: Someones heart is beating.
Maybe its mine. It beats like the rocking of a cradle. The world
sleeps. My heart is open and empty, like a cradle that soothes the children.
Nothing else. Surrender.
(Eero enters dragging Boy by the neck.
The Boy-actor is in a body cast. Its hard for Eero to get him to
move. He picks up an iron exercise bar and begins to hit Boy with it.
Boy screams. Lea hears the screaming, the dolls fall this way and that
as she runs to Boy. Each blow of the bar breaks some of the cast away
and gradually a person emerges not a child, a person.)
EERO: Take that. (Has dragged Boy onto
LEA: Stop it, stop it, hes had a seizure. (Boys screaming
has stopped.) Hes dying. Hes turning blue. (Lea hurls herself
on top of Boy, who is now completely free of the cast. The blows land
EERO: Ill teach him to be difficult.
(But he stops hitting Boy, throws the
bar aside and stomps off to his desk. Lea picks up the sheet and wipes
Boys face with it. Boy begins to come to.)
LEA: There, child, sleep now, mommy will stay right here, right here,
right here. Everything will be all right. (Keeps caring for her patient.
Boy sits up.) There, Boy. You have to learn to hold your tongue, dont
you? You can think, but you must hold your tongue.
BOY: Yes mommy.
LEA: Are you cold?
LEA: And remember, Boy, we wont bear a grudge over this, will we?
LEA: We have to learn to forgive.
BOY: No. When his hand touches my hand, I shudder, and think of snakes
LEA: Youre evil.
BOY: I must be evil. I despise him.
LEA: Cant you even hold your tongue?
BOY: And lie? You want me to learn to lie. I wont.
LEA: Its not a lie.
BOY: Yes it is.
LEA: Listen, my father said to me, patience. You do understand
that your little sisters, Pious and Girl, need their mother?
BOY: They do. And I do too.
LEA: Yes, you do understand. Youre still small and dont need
to understand everything yet. But youd help me a lot even by not
thinking bad thoughts about him.
LEA: By holding back, by staying out of grownups affairs, that way
you wont hurt me. Now daddy thinks I put you up to it, and thats
bad. Daddy feels surrounded by enemies, and thats not true, is it.
We love him. He is ours. Well wait for him to realize that. There
will come a time when well belong together like a real family.
BOY: Do you promise?
LEA: My big boy, why talk so much?
BOY: Mommy, you can talk to me. Who else can you talk to? And I understand.
Everything you and daddy talk about, I understand.
LEA: What is there to understand.
BOY: You think a child cant understand. Youve probably forgotten
what you thought when you were little.
(Mother enters dragging a rug with something heavy in it. Toini enters
behind the rug. Lea goes to meet Mother.)
LEA: You have to check a man out before you marry him.
MOTHER: Well do it then.
LEA: I will.
MOTHER: And once youve checked him out, be satisfied.
LEA: I will.
(The rug has come unrolled. There lies
Fathers body, soaking wet.)
LEA: Its father.
MOTHER: Maybe he fell into the water drunk.
LEA: Poor father. Maybe he jumped in, in despair.
TOINI: It doesnt matter now.
MOTHER: He wouldnt. Hes afraid of water. Believe me, Lea.
He is a great coward.
TOINI: Father acts like one of the children.
MOTHER: Yes. And just as insensitive to others. Like the children.
(Mother, Father (who is lying on the
rug), and Toini continue on their way. Lea gathers up the dolls, which
had fallen on the floor when Boys cries had alarmed her and called
her to his side.)
LEA: Is this all? (Puts the dolls in
the closet, tucks Boy in.) My darling. (When she is finished she sees
that Aulis and Toini have come.)
TOINI: Did you know what he did?
LEA: I knew.
TOINI: And still you defend him?
AULIS: I could have killed that man. I, who despise those who would lift
their hand against their fellow man.
LEA: Dear friend.
AULIS: If Toini wants to come home, I will forgive her. If she wants a
divorce, Ill support her financially.
TOINI: Support me financially, what a way to put it. He supported me financially
while I was still living there, and was that the epitome of bliss.
LEA: Youre doing Aulis an injustice.
AULIS: I trusted Toini.
LEA: (To Aulis) You spoiled her. (To Toini) Are you even sure you love
this other man, are you sure hell even take you . . .
TOINI: Take me? Take? And will I be happy? True love is fate, it has nothing
to do with happiness. When youre in love you dont dicker over
LEA: Toini, what will become of you? I cant help you.
TOINI: You need help more than I do.
LEA: You are heartless when you speak of me.
TOINI: Youre heartless too when you take Auliss side.
LEA: I still need to talk to you.
TOINI: What good will it do? When the formalities have been seen to, I
will marry Stanislaw and follow him. Thats all there is to it.
(Hugs Lea, then exits.)
AULIS: So thats the way its
going to be.
LEA: What I feel is more than grief.
AULIS: Toinis right. What would I do with happiness? I wouldnt
have time to care for it. Im not even a human being any longer,
only a working machine, I carry myself around like a quantum of knowledge
outside of life. I study blood, its chemical changes, and offer my services
where they are needed. Thats my only life, and its not much.
LEA: It is.
AULIS: Well, this thing is outside the two of us. Let us put it aside,
its all a mistake.
LEA: Everything here is a mistake.
(A hymn. Aulis exits. Lea opens the doll
closet, gathers the children around her.)
LEA: No one comes here, no one comes
to me. The only way to come here is downwards, down spiral stairs, sinking
or stooping, no thought, no attitude, no will or feeling, only the minds
surrender to total rest. No, Aulis, not upwards, not into the heights.
The way here is down, still farther, at rest, without demands, without
thought. There is nothing here, no disappointment, nothing. Nothing
has here been heated into human form. What do you want here, where there
SIIRI: (entering) That woman called again. I dont know why people
cant leave one in peace.
LEA: What woman?
SIIRI: What woman, yes, not hard to guess what sort she is. Calling in
the middle of the night. And he is putty in their hands. It makes me furious.
Anyone can get him to do anything, so long as it is evil.
LEA: Siiri, Siiri. Leave it, not so the children hear.
SIIRI: The worthless scoundrel.
LEA: You mustnt shout out everything for the children to hear.
SIIRI: Sorry maam. It just makes me angry.
(Eero enters. He has dressed for a performance
and checks his appearance in the mirror.)
EERO: What a sour face.
LEA: Not at all.
EERO: I wouldnt want to spend a moment of my time with a person
whose face looked like that. Revolting.
LEA: Youre exaggerating again. I could be sociable.
EERO: You have no tastes.
LEA: Do you?
EERO: Me? I have taste. You are beautiful. Damned soulful. And slender
and mournful. As if you were mourning. What, could it be Ive not
always treated you right? (Takes Leas face between his hands. Boy
freezes in an anxious stare.) What if Ive treated you badly, what?
LEA: Never mind.
EERO: Let me give you some money. (Takes his wallet from his pocket.)
EERO: If I give, you must take.
LEA: Put your money away. Ill ask you some other time.
EERO: Do as you wish. But dont judge me, and dont call me
(Exits. The money remains on the floor.
Lea bends down to pick it up.)
LEA: Boy, you must look your father in
BOY: Im afraid to.
LEA: You must.
BOY: I cant. I despise him. Im not going to start fawning
LEA: You mustnt shout out everything
for the children to hear.
SIIRI: Sorry maam. It just makes me angry.
LEA: Ive been wanting to tell you that Ive decided to get
along without a housekeeper.
SIIRI: You mean have me leave?
LEA: I dont need you any more.
SIIRI: I cant accept that. I wont go that easily. Im
the one who has held this house together, and when I leave, the house
comes crumbling down. All a woman has to do is crook her finger and he
goes running after her. The scoundrel. He should be locked up in the penitentiary.
LEA: Control yourself. I wont listen to this.
SIIRI: No. I wont be thrown away like an old rag. Maybe others have
something to say about this. And let me tell you, if you send me away,
youll regret it.
(Siiri presses her apron to her face
and exits. She has an outfit that can stand on its own. From under it
Silja appears and runs into the next scene.
Summer comes. Eero walks the Pious doll
and makes it jump gaily. Lea brings Girl, takes off some of her clothes,
and sits down to play with her. Silja settles down to watch them play.)
LEA: Look, Girl, this pine cones
a cow. Mommys giving it legs. Now the cow is walking in the meadow.
See the cow walk? Here comes a wolf. The cow hides. Now the cows
hiding. The wolf goes away. The cow comes out from hiding. Girl milks
BOY: (whom Eero is teaching to swim) Mommy look, Im learning!
EERO: Look at what a little man youre becoming. Dont twist
your body like that. Watch, like this. (Shows him.) Okay, try again. Ill
hold you. Dont be afraid.
BOY: Im not.
EERO: Good. Now its mommys turn. Come swim, Lea.
LEA: Dont be silly. Let the children swim.
EERO: Mommy swim, mommy swim.
LEA: Well all right. (Comes to the edge of the water.)
EERO: Have you enjoyed this?
LEA: I have. You can see yourself what an adventure this has been for
EERO: Good. Next summer, if we live that long, you and the children can
LEA: And you?
EERO: If we live that long, I will be going on a trip, perhaps abroad.
Remember that I am telling you this as if I had said nothing.
LEA: All right. Where would you go?
EERO: I already told you, remember, as if I had said nothing. If things
so require it, but there will be no explanations.
LEA: Small and thin girl, that Silja.
EERO: Poor orphan. Cripple. Simple, retarded. But obedient.
SILJA: Back problem, who knows what. Mother beat me. Then mother died.
I became a ward of the county.
LEA: And youve been keeping the doctors house all summer by
yourself? Hard-working girl.
SILJA: Ill be a real person someday, if only I get a good job.
LEA: Arent you lonely here?
SILJA: Only when the doctor is away on trips. But Im not afraid
to be alone.
SILJA: If only the missus would stay here with the children. Then the
doctor wouldnt go into town so many times every week, and I could
play with the children. Im not a bad girl.
LEA: Many times every week?
(Suddenly Eero pushes Lea into the water and holds her head under water.
The water turns dark. Boy sees this and runs to his mother. Eero pulls
back. Lea rises to the surface.)
EERO: Did I frighten you?
LEA: Not much. Not that easily.
(Eero goes to Silja and the smaller children.)
BOY: Mommy. He tried to drown you.
LEA: I was careless, thats all.
BOY: But I saw it.
LEA: (takes a tablecloth out of the picnic basket) Here, help me spread
this. Its more fun to eat on a tablecloth.
(Silja comes with Girl under her arm.
Lea takes Girl.)
LEA: Mommys Girl, daddys
Girl, whose Girl?
EERO: (returns to Lea) Listen, I have to go into town.
LEA: The children will be disappointed.
EERO: Is there any reason why we should take that into consideration,
I ask you? (Leaps across the stage clapping his hands.) Hurry.
LEA: Boy, help clean up. (They gather up the picnic they have laid. Eero
takes ahold of the summer play scenes edge.)
(Eero exits, taking summer with him.
Silja follows him. Lea carries the children, Boy the picnic basket. Lea
begins to put the children in the doll closet. Eero goes to Siiri.)
BOY: Cant be children, must change
into air. (Mimics his father.) Father? No thank you, I refuse to
be a father.
LEA: Boy, you make me ill.
BOY: Must you really be alive, who asked you to? Life is sad, its
all the invention of an evil spirit. I, I have created myself, answer
me that. Ahaa. There is no morality, no love. Let this marriage therefore
be null and void. Let it be as if it had never been.
LEA: Boy. Go to bed immediately.
BOY: I was only playing.
LEA: Bad playing.
BOY: We live like criminals in jail. Others have fathers, I dont.
LEA: This is no time to play around.
BOY: When is it time to play around?
LEA: Sometimes. Boy, its late.
(Puts Boy to bed. The Midsummer waltz
begins to play. Aulis enters and seizes the bed on which Lea and Boy are
sitting, carrying it around the room.)
LEA: Aulis, where are you taking us?
AULIS: Well fly to the ends of the earth.
LEA: Aulis, home.
BOY: We have a home right here now.
AULIS: Boy, shall we go to the ends of the earth?
BOY: We shall.
AULIS: You know the land where lemons bloom?
BOY: I do.
AULIS: Boy, there away, if we may. Children are your everything.
AULIS: And thats not wrong?
AULIS: Boy, man, eleven oclock Sunday morning. Ill come and
give the signal.
(Aulis parks the bed in its old spot.)
BOY: Well wait in the window, uncle.
(Aulis exits.) Mommy, why isnt Uncle Aulis our father?
LEA: Thats a naughty thing to say.
(Lea tucks Boy in, goes to the doll closet and turns off its light. Eero
and Siiri, embracing. Siiris child visible.)
SIIRI: The boy is yours, looks like you too. No need for a blood test.
EERO: Ill get money to you, I promised.
SIIRI: Look at me, what! A pretty young girl. Am I pretty?
EERO: Youre drunk.
(Siiris box fades into darkness.
But in the dark we can see Eero stay there, and a small figure, Silja,
crawling out from under Siiris free-standing outfit and gradually
moving, bucket in hand, toward Lea, mopping the floor.)
LEA: Father, father, I demand that you
stand beside me and support me. Father, where shall I go with my children?
MOTHER: Your father, may he rest in peace, was impractical. Whoever lacks
initiative and practical skills is doomed to unhappiness.
LEA: Father. Do I see right? I exaggerate. I do possess that skill. Wasnt
it your weakness too, father?
MOTHER: You try to be practical too and cast your sorrows to the Lord.
And see to your household and your husband.
(Mother and Father fade.)
SILJA: When someone else is a bride,
everybodys happy, but when Im a bride, no ones happy.
LEA: Whose bride are you?
SILJA: Cant you guess?
LEA: If anyone said anything, they said it in jest. Dont believe
people when they say such things. Dont let them make a fool of you.
SILJA: But youve let people make a fool of you.
(Silja exits with her bucket, giggling.
Lea watches her go.)
LEA: Just like Eero, father. Im
EERO: (enters) Children. What are they to me? Theyre your happiness.
For them youd hang on the cross. You would have left me ages ago,
but because of the children you dont dare, do you. You steal from
me legally, the laws that allow me to steal are my own, whats the
difference? I repay my debts, Ill give up my whole life if need
be. That should do it. And when I die, I want no flowers on my coffin
or in my hand. (Goes to his desk. Siiri enters and goes to him.) Youre
SIIRI: A trifle. The police boy pleased me greatly, young, fresh-baked,
that I saw immediately. Pretty country boy, why be shy about it? In the
end I told him my whole life story, and he me his own.
EERO: Did you mention my name?
SIIRI: Why not, of course I did. It was advertising for me, my stock rose.
EERO: (grabs Siiri by the hair) Dont drag me into your affairs.
SIIRI: (Strikes Eero on the chest with her fist. Eero lets go.) Why should
I save and protect you. Have you dragged me into your affairs, have you?
Pay up and were quits.
(Siiri fades into darkness, Eero walks
EERO: Watch your eyes, dont look
at me like that. Your face is as long as criminal law, full of judgments
and paragraphs. Youre not my judge. Chained dogs, were chained
dogs. Love, hah, I give it away free to anyone I choose, anyone wholl
take it, but not my soul. My soul is dirty, let it be. It will not be
cleansed or polished, and it wont be brought to you on a tray.
LEA: (Tries to protect her head from Eeros blow, but in vain) Calm
EERO: A saint. Ive been married to a saint. Ptui. This is how I
treat sanctimony. (Kicks Lea in the stomach, Lea crumples.)
EERO: I know your secret thoughts. Even through the walls I know them.
LEA: You may know them.
EERO: Your thoughts are a straitjacket, yes, a straitjacket. Theres
your love. Do you think I cant read your thoughts like a book? Press
hard, press on your head so they dont come out. If I feel like it
Ill file your head off and take it in my hands and read it like
a book, what do you say to that?
LEA: Its time you came to your senses.
EERO: Go, go out into the street looking like that and shout it out to
the whole world that your husband beats you. Shout, go ahead and shout.
LEA: You hit me. I suppose you have to. You hit whats yours.
EERO: Do you think that will make you mine?
LEA: No need, I already am yours. You wouldnt hit a stranger.
EERO: Youre not even halfway miserable yet. That I promise you.
You enjoy your torments, well sate yourself on them. But dont start
thinking Ill give you a divorce. Youll never be free of me.
I need you. When I take sick or go insane, wholl nurse me, wholl
beg for me? Just you wait, when Im old and wretched Ill call
you to my side, and youll come.
LEA: Go lie down, Ill make up your bed.
EERO: No, no. (Notices Boy watching them.) Theres the gawky kid
now. What are you doing barging in here? I know what that look means.
Quiet as a fish, but when I turn my back, hell work his mouth.
BOY: Thats not true. I hardly say anything bad about you.
EERO: Are you standing there guarding your mother? What a ladies
hero youll be. Youll be out seducing girls soon. When you
do, remember your father.
BOY: I wont. Im not going to be like you.
(Eero hits Boy.)
BOY: Hit me again, make it easier on
mother. (Eero hits him again.) Tormentor.
LEA: Leave it alone.
BOY: Let him hit me. Thats what a father does, a real father.
EERO: Out, out, get out this instant.
LEA: Eero, get ahold of yourself.
BOY: Let him fight, hes no good at anything else.
LEA: Youre tearing up my heart.
(The fighting continues, Boy starts giving
as good as he gets, but he loses, his nose starts bleeding, and thats
enough for Eero. On the other hand its clear that Eero wont
be able to beat up on Boy safely much longer; next time he will lose.)
EERO: You made him like this. Ill
never forgive you.
(Eero goes to his desk, loses a paper.)
LEA: You two will be the death of me.
BOY: He disgusts me. I wont forgive him. He has no right to hit
LEA: What if I give him the right?
BOY: You have no right to give him the right.
LEA: What if hes crazy?
BOY: Hes saner than all the rest of us put together. Hes just
mean. He makes others unhappy.
LEA: Who says we have to be happy here on earth? And what is happiness,
BOY: Do you expect me to be as wise as Socrates?
(They realize that the children have
been crying for some time, together go to the doll closet.)
(Eero has gone to Siiri.)
EERO: Dont blackmail me. Lets
go back to being the way we were before.
SIIRI: Dream on.
EERO: At least give me my letters back.
SIIRI: No. Then youll cheat on me.
(The spotlight moves to Lea, who is playing
LEA: What, Girl, you want to come in
my lap? Come. Is it time for Girl to be hungry? It is. Mommy will give
her girl some food. What, Girl wants to read? No, Girl doesnt know
how to read yet. Girl must eat and grow big and strong, then Girl will
go to school, run, run to school. Run, run to mommy, to daddy. Yes, Girl.
Some day Girl will be a big girl like Pious. (Lea sees Silja coming out
of Eeros room.) You came out of the doctors room.
SILJA: I dont go in there unless he orders me to.
LEA: He ordered you to?
SILJA: I dont go without orders.
LEA: Are you afraid of me?
SILJA: No, Im not afraid. Or, well, I guess I am.
LEA: What are you afraid of?
SILJA: If you make a fuss.
LEA: A fuss about what?
LEA: You know therell be no fuss. (Eero enters, Lea sees him give
Silja a signal. Silja laughs.) Whats so funny?
SILJA: I see a cat without a tail playing outside.
LEA: Go now, wash your hands and dress Girl.
(Silja stifles laughter and exits.)
LEA: Silja is underage and your ward.
LEA: Ill send her away.
EERO: Well see about that.
LEA: I will not let this house become a school for prostitutes.
EERO: Let me tell you a dream I had. I held a small child in my hands.
I told Silja: Saw its head off. And then Silja and I sawed
the childs head off. It bled all over my arms and chest, and one
of the eyes in the head stayed open and glared at me accusingly. Where
shall I put it, I wondered, so you wont find it?
So I wrapped it in newspaper and stuck it behind the bookcase and left
to give a lecture Id been asked to give. Thisll go to
court, I thought. What if I have to flee the country?
I thought. Then theyll notice that Im a traitor and will think
Ive sold secrets to the enemy. Nothing for it but to put a bullet
in my head, I decided. If I flee, itll be the same wherever
I go, I thought. However did I get mixed up in this sort of
thing, I wondered, Im a man of culture and so on,
I thought clearly and then woke up. Pretty obvious dream for a psychoanalyst.
LEA: Why do you dream about such things?
EERO: Whats a sex murderer, tell me whats a sex murderer.
(Lea says nothing.) A sex murderers a puzzle. People like you havent
a clue. You know nothing of life. A man thinks he controls his own actions.
No matter, no matter, Ive had my day, no matter, Ive lived
a thing as fully as a person can. Why do people say His Majesty Death?
LEA: There are lots of words for it. Maybe they say it out of fear, or
because death is the only true Majesty.
EERO: Now I cannot be disturbed, I have to finish my lecture, its
over there waiting for its conclusion. (Exits.)
LEA: Have to reach the surface. Dont panic down here in the depths,
try to stay alive and not panic. Dont make any rash decisions yet.
Remember the children. Dont take chances. Start over with the alphabet.
(A hymn. Ester has come to Lea.)
ESTER: I never imagined you might not
LEA: What did you say?
ESTER: They suspect Eero of being mixed up in some sort of treason thing.
Its not true, of course. It just never occurred to me that you might
LEA: What kind of thing? Tell me everything.
ESTER: Hes been seen frequently with suspicious characters. The
police have followed their trail. Dont take it like that. The characters
I mentioned have been arrested for treason . . . have been arrested for
treason . . . arrested for treason . . . for treason. But Eero gets around
a lot, meets all kinds of people, it doesnt mean anything.
LEA: What shall I do? What shall I do?
ESTER: Stop it. Everybodys short of money now and again.
LEA: But I dont know when Ill be able to pay it back.
ESTER: I doubt hes in any danger . . . hes in any danger .
. . in any danger.
LEA: So do I.
ESTER: I thought Eero would have told you himself. Cheer up. If I was
indiscreet, forgive me.
LEA: Thanks for the loan. (Ester exits.) Silja!
SILJA: (entering) You could be taken to court, Ill press charges
and youll be in jail.
LEA: Look, heres your money. (Puts the money in Siljas savings
box.) There, thats your salary.
SILJA: Lousy salary.
LEA: Then its a good thing youre getting out.
SILJA: Ive promised to keep my mouth shut.
LEA: Then keep it shut.
SILJA: Crafty old fox, cheats everyone and teaches them wicked ways. Shame
on him for lying. Now Ive told you everything, cant I stay?
LEA: Dont cry, its not worth it. Look, back in the country
youll grow up to be a good girl, isnt that so.
SILJA: Yes, but Ill miss her.
SILJA: Girl. Ill miss Girl so much.
LEA: But what if we agree that you can come back when its right
for me. Shall we?
SILJA: We shall. Then I wont drown myself.
LEA: What nonsense is this! You mustnt think such things . . . think
such things . . . such things . . . things.
SILJA: Can I take the candy with me?
LEA: Where did you get it?
SILJA: The master gave it to me. Money too.
LEA: How much?
SILJA: Five marks.
LEA: How many times?
SILJA: I dont remember.
LEA: Why did he give it to you?
SILJA: Whenever I wrote a letter.
LEA: What did you write?
SILJA: All kinds of things. How much money he spent. And shameful things.
LEA: What shameful things?
SILJA: Just lies.
LEA: Why did you do it?
SILJA: He disciplined you and gave me candy and protected me.
SILJA: Yes, took me in his arms. I thought he would notice that I was
lying. And I just kept lying all the more. And once he hit you because
of my lies.
LEA: What did you get out of it?
SILJA: He just liked to raise a ruckus.
LEA: Time to go.
SILJA: I wont leave.
LEA: Dont be silly.
SILJA: I wont take you to court.
LEA: Dont even talk about it.
(Boy goes to walk Silja off.)
(Lea starts to clean, but with contrary
results. Things gradually get strewn here and there across the stage.
She finds a photograph taken of Eero and her at their wedding, and leans
it up against their bed. Then she finds the bridal veil/sheet/curtain
in her hand, soiled with dusty footprints. She tries it on her head, walks
about for a moment, then crumples it, tears at it, it gives way, faded
old fabric, and it tears, becomes a cleaning rag. At the same time Lea
says, as if praying:)
LEA: I wont leave him.
(Eero enters, Lea notices him.)
LEA: Its time we cleared things
up. Hit me first, but then tell me what they suspect you of.
EERO: I will no longer stoop to such weakness as being good. Im
just a mad dog, I bite to the right and bite to the left, thats
the ticket. I stink of carrion like an old dog. Any hooker is cleaner
than me. Bad father, bad husband, traitor. Fine. So be it. Forgive me
for being your husband. Forgive me for being a father to your children.
Forgive me. And give me back the ring.
(Lea pulls the ring off her finger and
hands it to Eero, who flings it away.)
EERO: You wont have a penny from
me, not a penny. I may be wretched, but I have my pride too. My life has
been so impoverished that the only thing Ive ever had is you, only
(Eero takes something out of a desk drawer
and puts it in his pocket; its a gun.)
LEA: Eero, what was it?
EERO: Stay out of my business. Ill make people listen to me.
LEA: What did you put in your pocket? Eero.
(Lea tries to grab Eero, but he throws
her to the floor and exits.)
(Eero with Siiri.)
SIIRI: Did you bring the money? Answer
me. (Eero pulls the pistol out of his pocket and aims it at Siiri.)
(Lea sings a lullaby to the doll closet.
Boy goes to his fathers desk.)
LEA: No more fear and no more heart for
the game. No more heart for the game. My heart has betrayed me all these
years. Let this cup pass from me. Nevertheless, not as I will . . .
(The simultaneous situation with Siiri
SIIRI: You dont have the guts,
you coward. Put down the gun.
(Siiri grabs the hand holding the gun.
The gun goes off. Siiri falls to the floor. Somewhere a child cries. Eero
looks at the dead Siiri.)
EERO: Blood? What a word. Everything
lives in blood. Lust, desire, evil, all hell. And that is life. (Backs
off until he stands centerstage front, more in his own head than in any
place.) Actually it has no beginning or end. You inherit the blood. There
is no death, the individual is merely relieved of his burden. There they
are again, the whole orchestra playing. Delirium. High blood pressure,
thats all. Even the veins give in. Agitation causes tension. Lymphatic
action. They call it character. My blood is thicker now. Great thing those
changes in blood chemistry. Inside a man there lives a desire to defend
and to destroy. Their uneven movements mean life, a battle between two
different drives. Man is but the ground on which the battle is fought.
Maybe the soul is nothing more than chemistry too. Blood? If only we could
read its history. What it doesnt contain of whats been and
gone. Individuality, that is this bloods might, the specialty of
my own blood. Who can say whether it should destroy me? (Eero stands still
for a moment, but no one answers him. Then he puts the gun to his temple
and pulls the trigger.)
(Lea walks slowly to Eero, bends down,
feels his hand and his cheek.Then
she takes flowers, is about to put them in Eeros hand, but lays
them beside him instead. A childs cry; she notices Siiris
baby and takes it with her. When she stands up, Boy has come next to her.)
BOY: Mother, lets go.
(Together they cover Eero with a cloth.
BOY: Mother, the sun is shining, even
though its winter. A son must protect his mother.
LEA: Boy, my own Boy.
BOY: My own mother. Ill never leave you.
LEA: Thats right, Boy, in your heart.
BOY: All this that has been will never come again. Never.
(A bell rings three times.)
(All the characters come onto the stage
as if into church. A hymn.)
BOY: Your cheek is still bruised. My
skin crawls when I think about it.
(Eeros body is carried offstage.
Siiris body is dragged off at the same time. The doll that is her
child remains. Lea arranges the doll closet. Last of all she takes the
doll that is Siiris child.)
LEA: Guy. You can be Guy. Father sent
Guy as a reminder to be good.
BOY: Thats all I need. To see that boy always before my eyes.
LEA: Hes your brother.
BOY: No he isnt. Is the same thing starting all over again? Our
home is not a home. Mother, mother, you dont know what youre
doing. Soon Ill only be able to hate.
LEA: Your bitterness will pass. Would you let your brother beg, could
you see him coming to your door begging?
BOY: I wouldnt recognize him. It would be all the same to me. Let
him beg. This is the only area where my heart is hard. And why shouldnt
it be hard, in a torturers son.
LEA: Hush. Youre tearing at my heart.
BOY: In a home like ours being afraid was a way of life. I always ran
home from school, and when I saw you I was glad you were still alive.
Childhood, what kind of a childhood did we ever have?
LEA: Its been a bitter lesson, true. But one thing its taught
us: to love life.
BOY: Say rather, to love torture. Lies, lies.
LEA: Do you have to shout at your mother, is that necessary, Boy my love?
BOY: Dont say that word, I forbid it.
BOY: Patience, patience. When I lay in my cradle, Ill bet the first
word you said to me was patience.
LEA: It was.
BOY: I hate, I seethe with hatred. You say love. Ive learned to
hate. Ill never forgive him.
LEA: Im not to blame.
BOY: Im an emotional cripple. Can you understand that, mother. This
is my fate.
(Lea walks around Boy and takes the dolls
in the doll closet into her arms, gathering up Guy next to his sisters.)
LEA: When I get married, itll be
to have a baby. Married. Strange thought. Not even knowing the man Ill
marry. Hes out there somewhere. You, to you I send my greetings.
You will love me some day. We will raise our children and love them more
than all the world.
(A waltz begins to play, Lea begins to
spin around with the dolls in her arms. A man enters, Eero. He bows. Lea
dances with Eero.)
EERO: I have always associated Midsummer
LEA: But what if when it comes its only a Midsummer nights
dream that makes you scream when you wake?
EERO: It wont.
(Aulis enters and cuts in to dance with
AULIS: Did he frighten you?
LEA: Im not easily frightened.
AULIS: It was written: Descended into hell, rose again from the
dead, and will come again to judge the living and the dead. Isnt
LEA: Yes, powerful.
AULIS: If you judge, do you judge rightly?
LEA: I dont judge.
AULIS: I should have stolen you first.
LEA: What I felt then forced me to go through what I did. (Aulis and Lea
reach out to each other.) From now on you and I will suffer together.