Volume 7, Number 2

July 2009

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Two Contemporary Medeas

By Zoraide Rodrigues Carrasco de Mesquita (1)


This article focuses on two rewritings of Euripides’s Medea – Marina Carr’s By the Bog of Cats (1998) and Paulo Pontes/Chico Buarque’s Gota D’Água: Uma Tragédia Brasileira (1975) – with the intention of discussing the similar solutions found by the Irish and the Brazilian playwrights to culturally contextualise their versions of the Greek tragedy in contemporary times.

The five plays belonging to the second phase of Marina Carr’s theatre production – the so-called ‘phase of Midlands’ (1994-2002) – present a common feature regarding the technique employed by the Irish playwright. This consists of, as Eilis Ní Dhuibhne observes, ‘underpinning a play with a folktale or myth’: ‘Portia Coughlan alludes to Shakespearian drama, By the Bog of Cats and On Raftery’s Hill to classical myths. In the case of The Mai, its folkloristic parallel is not a well-known story, but a local legend …’ (Dhuibhne 2003: 69). Although the essayist does not mention Ariel, the same technique is used in this play, since its starting point is classical myths as recorded by Euripides and Aeschylus.

Carr’s characteristic technique is clearly an intertextual procedure, especially on two levels: allusion, which can be observed in all the five plays mentioned, and rewriting, which is the process used in By the Bog of Cats.

The aim of this article is to appreciate the way Marina Carr retells Medea as well as to establish a parallel between By the Bog of Cats and a Brazilian play, Gota D’Água: Uma Tragédia Brasileira, both of them based on Euripides’ play. Manfred Pfister’s criteria for examining intertextuality will be used as support for the analysis where necessary. In his “Konzept der Intertextualität” he proposes six criteria, four of which will be explained: Referentialität (reference), Kommunikativität (Communication), Strukturalität (structure) and Selektivität (selectivity).

By the Bog of Cats (1998) is referred to by Melissa Sihra as a ‘contemporary version of Medea culturally contextualized’ (Sihra 2003: 97), and the same can be said about Gota D’Água (1975) by Paulo Pontes and Chico Buarque. Although each of these plays presents traces of its specific context, they are not limited to national problems, and it is surprising that playwrights from different countries and writing in different periods of time found similar solutions on rewriting the Greek tragedy. Moreover, the Irish and the Brazilian playwrights share the same concern about language. Carr has been praised by critics for the beauty of the images in her plays. For Eilis Ní Dhuibne, for example, Marina Carr is ‘a storyteller with a lyrical bent whose work combines poetic and narrative qualities’ (Dhuibhne 2003: 66), while Melissa Sihra, when referring to By the Bog of Cats, comments that ‘the landscape from which Carr writes’ is ‘where the world of poetry and storytelling is a necessary part of the everyday’ (Sihra 2003: 103). On the other hand, Paulo Pontes and Chico Buarque chose to write their play in verses with the purpose of ‘poetically’ intensifying the dialogues, ‘in part because poetry is better to express the depth of feelings that move the characters’, and also because their intention, by using verses, was an attempt to make words regain their value. Taking into account that language is ‘the medium for organised thought’ (2), the Brazilian authors gave priority to language over any other theatrical devices, aiming to translate the complexity of the Brazilian situation at the time (Pontes/ Buarque 1975: 18).

As rewritings of Euripides’ Medea, both the Brazilian and the Irish plays maintain the ‘set of devices with which one text pointedly refers to another, its “pretext”’ (Pfister 1991: 210): the main characters as well as the topics of the Greek tragedy (abandonment, rejection, banishment, revenge and infanticide). Therefore, there is clear reference to Euripides’ play; besides, as a literary canon, the ‘pretext’ can be easily recognised by the reader as the structural basis for the intertexts. The deviations from the ‘pretext’, however, are more relevant than the similarities, since they permit the appreciation of how old texts are renewed and contextualised. Such shifts correspond to Pfister’s selectivity, which includes additions, suppressions and substitutions regarding characters, structure and motives.

The Medea protagonists, Hester Swane (By the Bog of Cats), and Joana (Gota D’Água) are similar to each other regarding personality; however, the Irish and the Brazilian ‘Medeas’ are distanced from the original one in relation to their position in society and also to the solution they choose at the end as a way of not submitting to their antagonist’s power. Interestingly, these shifts also contribute to bringing Hester and Joana closer together.

The three Medeas have a wild temperament and possess magical, supernatural powers. Whereas Medea herself has the capacity to make potions to make old people look young and strong again, as well as the ability to prepare poison which can impregnate robes, Hester has secret powers that are not revealed, but also extraordinary, acute senses, as she sees things that are invisible to other people, hears ghosts and talks to them. On the other hand, Joana, the Brazilian Medea, takes part in rituals of African origin and practices macumba. These three strong women allow their instinctive nature free reign:, they love and hate passionately, and they become furious when they face injustice, not fearing the experience of feelings of revenge. They are, in short, neither tamed nor submissive women. Medea is described as an impulsive and mad woman, and Jason calls her a ‘lioness’. Hester is characterised as a ‘savage tinker’, a ‘dangerous witch’ and as a ‘mad’ woman. Joana is compared to a ‘snake’; she is like ‘hell’ with her ‘aggressive and intolerable temperament’, although she is also a ‘princess’ and a ‘queen’ for an admirer of hers (3). Carr emphasises the savage nature of women that is made manifest in the characters’ names: Hester Swane, whose surname resembles ‘swan’, and Catwoman, the protagonist’s double; moreover, as soon as Hester cuts her daughter’s throat ‘in one savage movement’, she begins to ‘wail, a terrible animal wail’ (BBC: 339) (4).

On the other hand, neither Hester nor Joana is a princess in exile. Unlike Medea, they belong to the place where they live, although they are outcasts of society. Hester is a tinker (or a traveller), a ‘national outsider’. (5) Joana, who does not have a regular job, had worked as a seamstress and as a midwife, had taken care of mentally ill people, had carried large buckets of water; in short, she did whatever was possible for her to make a living. Both Hester and Joana struggle to remain in their home which belongs to them by moral rights, although not by law. When they are banished, both of them choose death: Hester kills herself with a knife, after killing her daughter, whereas Joana, together with her two children, commits suicide by eating poisoned meatballs. The similar dénouement in the Brazilian and the Irish plays is an important shift in relation to Euripides’s Medea, in which the device of deus ex machina is used to provide the heroine’s escape in regal splendour.

Medea, as well as Jason, their children, Creon and the princess, have their counterparts in Marina Carr’s and Paulo Pontes/Chico Buarque’s plays; but regarding the other characters, the contemporary playwrights have proceeded to suppressions, substitutions or additions in order to contextualise their plays.

In By the Bog of Cats, the counterparts to the central group of characters are Hester, Carthage, their daughter, Xavier Cassidy and Caroline. Two other characters, Monica and Catwoman, maintain little resemblance to the Greek chorus, since they understand Hester’s motivations, and encourage and defend her. Medea’s nurse, her childminder, Aegeus, and the messenger, however, do not have correspondents. In their place, nevertheless, there are other characters that comprise the social framework of the Bog of Cat’s community: a representative of the Catholic Church (Father Willow), the new-rich (Mrs. Kilbride, Carthage’s mother), and the waiters working at Carthage and Caroline’s wedding party. One of these waiters, the Young Dunne, has a dream of becoming an astronaut. Hester herself is a tinker, whereas Xavier Cassidy, the counterpart to Creon in Euripides’ play, is a rich land-owner. There is also a supernatural being, The Ghost Fancier, who appears in the Bog of Cats, to announce Hester’s death.

Hester says that she has two sides, a decent one and a violent one. Her evil part surfaces when she feels threatened by banishment from her space. The figure who incarnates this threat is Xavier Cassidy. His very appearance in the last act of Carr’s play is threatening: ‘Xavier Cassidy comes up behind her [Hester] from the shadows, demonic, red-faced, drink-taken, carries a gun’ (BBC: 328). The gun is the sign of violence that defines his personality. In his speech he expresses his prepotency. ‘I ran your mother out of here and I’ll run you too like a frightened hare’ (BBC: 328), he says to Hester. The protagonist does not assimilate Cassidy’s discourse. She does not accept his words, and this means that she does not accept his authority; it also means that she does not submit; but this very fact causes her expulsion. Hester does not fear her opponent and fights with him. At the end of this scene, her speech is ambiguous, giving the impression that she will continue to defy him, on the one hand, and that she agrees with Cassidy and will leave the place as ordered, on the other hand:

HESTER (laughs at him) – You’re sweatin’. Always knew ya were yella to the bone. Don’t worry, I’ll be lavin’ this place tonight, though not the way you or anywan else expects. Ya call me a witch, Cassidy? This is nothin’, you just wait and see the real –‘ (BBC: 331).

Xavier Cassidy’s main concern is the possession of land. For him, family is second to business, and he has accepted his daughter’s marriage to Carthage only because his son-in-law might be useful: Carthage is young and can help him in his business of acquiring more and more land. Cassidy has purchased Hester’s land in the Bog of Cats; therefore, it belongs to him by law; nevertheless, Hester continues to be the real owner of it. The very name of the space reinforces her moral rights over the land: the real owner of the Bog of Cats should be the Catwoman, the protagonist’s double. The conflict between Cassidy and Hester is caused by their irreconcilable views on the meaning of land. Whereas for Cassidy it is connected to business and the possession of material goods, for Hester it is coloured with sentimental tones. It is impossible for her to leave, since this is the place where she expects to join her mother, Josie Swane, who, although she abandoned her when she was a seven-year-old child, will one day return to the Bog of Cats, as Hester faithfully believes. The dialogue between Cassidy and Hester makes evident his concern with written and signed contracts, modes of legalisation used in our society. Hester offers him part of the money to recuperate the land which she had sold at the time when she ‘was bein’ coerced and bullied from all sides’, but now that she has ‘regained’ her ‘pride’, she is certain that she must stay in the Bog of Cats. Her opponent, however, is inflexible: ‘A deal’s a deal’ (BBC: 293). The discourse based on legality contaminates Caroline – ‘sure ya signed it’ – and Carthage – ‘He [Xavier Cassidy] signin’ his farm over to me this evenin’’ -, but it is not assimilated by Hester: ‘Bits of paper, writin’, means nothin’, can aisy be unsigned’ (BBC: 283 and 289). The characters’ dissimilar points of view cause an unsolvable conflict between them. The fact is that progress and civilisation require the banishment of the marginalised travellers, and Hester perfectly understands the point: ‘The truth is you want to eradicate me, make out I never existed’ (BBC: 315). Although a strong and defiant woman, she cannot manage to defeat the rich man who is protected by law. Hester’s sole triumph is to leave her permanent mark of blood on that soil, which morally belongs to her. The moment of her death is the impressive scene that closes the play. As in a ritual, she and the invisible Ghost Fancier ‘go into a death dance with the fishing knife, which ends plunged into Hester’s heart. She falls to the ground. Exit Ghost Fancier with knife’ (BBC: 341). This scene, poetically conceived for its beauty and ambiguity, matches the splendour of Medea’s escape.

Closer to Euripides’ Medea than By the Bog of Cats, including the process of not changing the names of some characters, such as Jasão (Jason), Creonte (Creon), and Egeu (Aegeus), by maintaining the chorus, by presenting a counterpart to Medea’s nurse and her childminder blended into one character (Corina, Joana’s best friend), and also by a sort of Messenger (Boca Pequena, who is, in fact, an informant who betrays his people), the Brazilian play, nevertheless, also focuses on social groups from a district located in Rio de Janeiro. Thus, the lower class is represented by a group of four washerwomen; by Egeu, an old man who repairs radios, by his wife Corina, and by three men who work all day – although what they do to earn money is not clear, except for Cacetão, who is a gigolo. In their spare time these men meet to drink beer and talk about their passions - football, samba, and women – at a bar owned by Galego, a foreigner. Four characters complete the social framework: Joana herself, who lives in this community of poor people; Jasão, a sambista (he composes and sings samba); Creonte, the rich and powerful man and his daughter, Alma, the petty bourgeoise who is going to marry Jasão.

Politically engaged, Gota D’Água represents the Brazilian society of the 1970s, but it also points to the reality of all the humiliated people living elsewhere. According to Paulo Pontes and Chico Buarque, the play intends to show a society that was faced with a fierce capitalism ‘produced by the brutal concentration of wealth’ (Pontes/Buarque 1975: 9). During that time the lower classes were being ignored even by the culture produced in Brazil. The authors of Gota D’Água, however, credit the people with the source of national identity, and therefore the poor men and women who strive for life are central in their play. In this sense, it is evident why the authors had thought of a counterpart to the Greek chorus. Although the chorus is an element that defines the Greek tragedy, appropriate to ancient times when the collective experience was shared, by maintaining the chorus - composed by four washerwomen - the playwrights emphasise the common experience shared by the people of a poor community whose suffering and deprivations motivate solidarity with each other.

In Gota D’Água, the heroine’s antagonist is Creonte, the proprietor of ninety houses which had been sold to poor people. He is not a benefactor. In fact, Creonte has become very rich exploiting the poor. The people who bought their houses from Creonte believed that they would pay off for their debts in ten years. However, the instalments increase each month; moreover, interest and monetary correction are applied to the agreed value of the property; therefore, these people often fail to comply with their commitments. Joana is one of them. As for her, she has already paid a fair sum of money for her house, but still owes a lot of money to Creonte, who is a thief. She does not hesitate to call him names publicly, and her behaviour makes the big man furious. He is afraid of her powers and now she is a nuisance; in consequence, he decides to banish Joana from the community. Old Egeu, who is the only one aware of the exploitation suffered by his neighbours and himself, makes an attempt to protect Joana. He talks to his fellows, trying to make them conscious of the situation, and succeeds in convincing them that whatever happens to one of them affects all others. They can win the struggle against Creonte only if they keep together to claim their rights.

EGEU: … If we / let Creonte undisturbedly put/ this woman on the street, the dumped/ tomorrow can be you, …/ But no one can live in his place/ for which he had paid more than he owed/ and be dependent on the sympathy of someone else/ to live in peace. No. Your space is sacred/ … (GA: 140) (6)

Creonte’s main target, however, is Joana. Very cleverly, he manages to calm the claimants down by promising not to charge them for the late instalments, with the condition that they pay the next instalments on time. Joana, however, must leave the house she lives in at once. He goes in person to the protagonist’s house, accompanied by the police, in order to force her to leave. The dialogue below shows the confrontation between the two characters. It is worth noting Creonte’s violent discourse and the same concern with legal documents and signatures as Cassidy’s in the Irish play:

CREONTE - … I am going to be friendly/ once again/ Take this money/ Leave without protesting, take it easy, I can give you / a little more…

JOANA - You can’t force me to get out …

CREONTE - Whether you voluntarily and quickly leave,/ or the policemen here can force you…

JOANA - This is my place…

CREONTE - Papers,/document… Deed, where is it?/ This conversation is over./ No pardon, no agreement/ Either you quietly leave or we will have a scandal here,/ the choice is yours… (He beckons the policeman) / Guys… (GA: 155) (7)

The scene that closes Gota D’Água presents two movements in quick sequence, as if following the syncopation of the samba. Firstly, just when Creonte is delivering a speech to praise his son-in-law during Jasão and Alma’s wedding, Egeu and Corina suddenly enter the room: ‘Egeu has Joana’s corpse in his arms and Corina is carrying the children’s corpses; they place the corpses before Creonte and Jasão” (GA: 174) (8) . There is a pause; everybody stands still. The second movement prevents the audience’s emotional involvement with the action by using the Brechtian technique, aiming to maintain the audience’s awareness of the serious subject of the play. Thus, in the sequence, all the cast, including Joana and the two boys who played the role of her children, begin to sing the theme-song. The play closes with the projection of the headlines in a newspaper reporting on a tragedy in a suburb in Rio de Janeiro.

A final remark on these two plays based on Medea may be made in reference to their titles. Neither Carr’s nor Pontes/Buarque’s heroines give their names to their plays. In the Irish rewriting, the space where the action develops stands for the title, emphasising the community and Hester’s inner drama. “The Bog of Cats” is also one of the songs composed by Hester’s mother that refers to the bog, a place of dreams and vain promises, a place to which Josie Swane ‘one day will return,/In mortal form or in ghostly form’ (BBC: 262). Curiously, the title of the Brazilian play also refers to a song actually composed by Chico Buarque and fictionally by Jasão, Joana’s lover. Its refrain – ‘Leave my heart in peace/ for it is a pot full of sorrow/ and any lack of attention/ please, don’t/ can be the last straw’ (9) (GA: 47) – refers to the problematic situation of the characters in the play. It is the image of Joana’s deep sorrow for having been abandoned by Jasão and banished by Creonte and of what she can do in such circumstances, for she is about to explode with rage and bitterness. It also expresses the suffering of the people of the community since they are under pressure to pay for a debt they cannot afford.

The common concerns and the similar solutions presented in the two versions of Medea lead to the conclusion that, despite the traces of Irishness in By the Bog of Cats and of Brazilianness in Gota D’Água, the meaning of these plays are not limited to the historical contexts of the countries each one belongs to. Both of them mirror contemporary society: just as happens on stage, the marginalised temporally occupy the centre, but they are defeated in the end by the central dominant power.


- Carr, Marina, Plays 1: Low in the Dark, The Mai, Portia Coughlan, By the Bog of Cats (London: Faber and Faber, 1999).

- Cerquoni, Enrica, ‘One bog, many bogs: Theatrical Space, Visual Image and Meaning in Some Productions of Marina Carr’s By the Bog of Cats…’ in Leeney, C; McMullan, A, The Theatre of Marina Carr: ‘Before Rules Was Made’ (Dublin: Carysfort Press, 2003, pp. 172-199).

- Dhuibhne, Eilis Ní, ‘Playing the Story: Narrative Techniques in The Mai’ in Leeney, C; McMullan, A, The Theatre of Marina Carr: ‘Before Rules Was Made’ (Dublin: Carysfort Press, 2003, pp. 65-73).

- Euripides, Medéia (São Paulo: Hucitec, 1991).

- Pfister, Manfred, ‘Konzepte der Intertextualität’ in Broich, U.; Pfister, M. (eds.), Intertextualität, Formen, Funktionen, anglistische Fallstudien (Tübingen: Max Niemeyer Verlag, 1985, pp. 1-30).

- Pfister, Manfred, ‘How Postmodern is Intertextuality?’ in Plett, Heinrich F. (ed.), Intertextuality (Berlin/New York: Walter de Gruyter, 1991, pp. 207-224).

- Pontes, Paulo; Buarque, Chico, Gota D’Água: Uma Tragédia Brasileira (Rio de Janeiro: Civilização Brasileira, 2004).

- Sihra, Melissa, ‘Reflections Across Water: New Stages of Performing Carr’ in Leeney, C; McMullan, A, The Theatre of Marina Carr: ‘Before Rules Was Made’ (Dublin: Carysfort Press, 2003, pp. 92-113).


1 Zoraide Rodrigues Carrasco de Mesquita has a PhD in Irish Studies from the University of São Paulo. She has taught North American Literature and Literature for Children and Youth at Ibirapuera University in São Paulo for fifteen years. She lectured in the Post Graduate Programmes in Literatures in English at the University of São Paulo. She is one of the directors of the Brazilian Association of Irish Studies (ABEI).

2 ‘... um pouco porque a poesia exprime melhor a densidade de sentimentos que move os personagens’ .... A linguagem, instrumento do pensamento organizado...’

3 ‘[Joana] tem gênio de cobra...’ (p. 56); ‘... você é um inferno ...’ (p. 134); ‘[Esse seu] temperamento agressivo e insuportável... (p. 130); [Ô, Joana... Joana...] princesa... rainha... (p. 154).

4 BBC stands for By the Bog of Cats.

5 In an interview (quoted by Enrica Cerquoni), Marina Carr explains why she has made the counterpart of Medea in By the Bog of Cats a traveller: ‘I chose to make her a traveller because travellers are our national outsiders, aren’t they?’ ( 2003: 178).

6 EGEU: ... se a gente/deixar Creonte jogar calmamente/ essa mulher na rua, o despejado/ amanhã pode ser você,.../ Mas ninguém pode viver num lugar/ pelo qual pagou mais do que devia/ e estar dependendo da simpatia/ de um cidadão pra conseguir morar/ tranqüilo. Não. O seu chão é sagrado/ ... Note: GA stands for Gota D’Água.

7 CREONTE: ... Vou ser camarada/ mais uma vez./ Apanha aí esse dinheiro/ Saia sem chiar, calma, sou capaz de dar/ mais um pouco...

JOANA: Você não pode me botar pra fora...

CREONTE: Se você não sair por bem, ligeiro, / sai no pau...

JOANA: Este aqui é meu lugar...

CREONTE: Papel, / documento... Escritura, onde é que está?/ Fim de papo. / Não tem perdão nem alvará/ Ou sai na maciota ou no sarapatel, / escolhe... (Faz sinal para os guardas)/ Pessoal...

8 ‘EGEU carregando o corpo de JOANA no colo e CORINA carregando os corpos dos filhos; põem os corpos na frente de CREONTE e JASÃO...’

9 ‘Deixa em paz meu coração/ que ele é um pote até aqui de mágoa/ E qualquer desatenção/ faça não/ Pode ser a gota d’água’.


Marina Carr’s Ariel (2002): translation into Brazilian Portuguese, by Zoraide R. C.

The passage below is the end of Act 2, the moment when Frances discovers that her husband, Fermoy Fitzgerald, had sacrificed their own daughter, Ariel, ten years earlier. It is worth noting the rapid sequence of events: as soon as Frances hears about Fermoy’s crime, she does not hesitate and kills him as revenge for the death of Ariel.

FRANCES – Você não vai a lugar nenhum. Foi você, não foi? Foi você.

FERMOY – Você só percebeu agora? Pensei que você soubesse há muito tempo.

FRANCES – Que eu soubesse o que há muito tempo?

FERMOY – Frances... então, você não sabia... Olhe, agora não é hora para essa conversa.

FRANCES – Você. Sempre você, e eu que vasculhei o mundo para encontrá-la. Você. E eu me matando de tristeza. Você. Ontem à noite mesmo sonhei que ela entrava por essa porta e dez anos de loucura desapareciam. Ela tinha uma vida. Uma. E você está me dizendo que lhe tirou a vida?

FERMOY – Ariel foi, do início ao fim, um sonho que passou por nós. Tivemos o privilégio de sua companhia por algum tempo, mas ela nunca nos pertenceu. Trouxemos para esse mundo algo que não era daqui e que tínhamos que devolver.

FRANCES – Devolver? Nós a devolvemos? Devolvemos para onde?

FERMOY – Lembra as asas que ela tinha quando nasceu?

FRANCES – Asas? Que asas?

FERMOY – As asas em suas omoplatas.

FRANCES – Do que você está falando? Que asas? Em suas omoplatas? Aquelas excrescências nos ombros, é disso que você está falando? FERMOY – Eram o começo de asas.

FRANCES – Eram uma formação de osso e cartilagem endurecida, só isso, benignas, formações minúsculas, e que foram retiradas.

FERMOY – Você está chamando isso de todos os nomes, menos do que era de fato. Deixe-me lhe dizer uma coisa, Frances. Antes de conhecer você, muito antes, eu tive um sonho, um sonho tão lindo, que eu desejei permanecer assim, sonhando, até o fim dos tempos. Estou num campo amarelo, batendo um papo amigavelmente com Deus, quando essa menina de asas apareceu ao lado dele. Então pergunto: de quem ela é? E Deus diz que ela lhe pertence. E eu digo: empreste-me essa menina, por favor. Não, diz ele, ela não tem o sabor da terra, usando essa expressão, como se estivesse falando de sorvete. E eu, tolamente, digo: vou levá-la comigo de qualquer jeito. Está bem, diz ele, sorrindo sorrateiramente para mim, está bem, mas lembre-se de que é um empréstimo. Sei, sei, digo eu, mas de nada sabia. E o tempo chegará quando vou querê-la de volta, diz ele. Sim, sim, digo, voando do campo com ela, antes que ele mudasse de idéia. Ariel. Era a Ariel.

FRANCES – Diga-me onde ela está.

FERMOY – Estou dizendo, foi com Ariel que saí correndo do campo. E depois acordo e começa o encantamento. Você, Ariel, Elaine, Stephen. Todas as pequenas jóias deste mundo choveram sobre nós. Vivemos dez bons anos, não vivemos? Foram os melhores anos de nossas vidas e não sabíamos. Ele deu, deu, deu e, depois, como a maré, voltou e levou tudo embora.

FRANCES – (UM GEMIDO DE DOR, CHORANDO COMO NUNCA, FICA ALI, SOLUÇANDO, SUFOCANDO, GEMENDO) – Ariel... Ariel... Ariel... Como você teve coragem? Você amava aquela criança... Como você teve coragem? (SACODE-O).

FERMOY – Fui obrigado! Fui obrigado!

FRANCES – Foi obrigado!

FERMOY – É, fui obrigado! Você acha que eu queria sacrificar Ariel? Eu fui obrigado.

FRANCES – Sacrificar? Você a sacrificou? O que você fez com ela?

FERMOY – Já disse que tinha que devolvê-la para o lugar de onde ela veio.

FRANCES – Ela veio daqui mesmo, de você, de mim.

FERMOY – Ela apareceu do nada, veio de Deus, e para Deus foi devolvida.

FRANCES – Você a sacrificou! Aaaagh. Por que você não sacrificou a si mesmo se ele queria um sacrifício? Por que você não se recusou?

FERMOY – Claro que me recusei. Briguei com ele até não poder mais.

FRANCES – Não foi com nenhum Deus que você fez um pacto. Nenhum Deus exige essas coisas.

FERMOY – Meu Deus exigiu.

FRANCES – Você culpa Deus, culpa todo mundo, só não culpa a si mesmo. Tudo se torna claro agora, claro como água. Você fez tudo pelo poder, não foi, um vodu realizado nas trevas em troca do poder. Você colocou minha filha num altar de sacrifício em troca de poder. Você progrediu nestes dez anos desde o sacrifício de Ariel. Você subiu à custa da inocência de Ariel. Você negociou-a em nome de sua carreira.

FERMOY – Sim, é isso. Sim, é isso mesmo. Tinha que fazer o que fiz. Era o preço exigido.

FRANCES – E você ainda tem coragem de me contar historinhas de fadas sobre ela.

FERMOY – Frances, tenho consciência do que fiz. Admito minha parcela de culpa, mas quando estou prostrado diante dele, sinto-me impelido a lhe devolver a parte que lhe é de direito. Tenho vivido de acordo com as instruções dele. Ele pediu o impossível e obedeci, e depois ele partiu, deixando-me aqui transformado em cinzas. Tenho muito medo de que ele não esteja lá quando eu partir. Não, meu medo maior é que ele esteja lá.

FRANCES – (SUAVEMENTE) –Mas Ariel... Fermoy... É sobre Ariel que você está falando.

FERMOY – Não torne as coisas mais difíceis do que já são.

FRANCES – Você é que tornou as coisas difíceis. Antes o mundo era, para você, para os outros, como um playground.

FERMOY – Não é um playground, nunca foi. Aqui é onde ele nos persegue como se fôssemos corças e nos mantém vivos para se divertir. FRANCES – O que foi que vi em você quando o conheci?

FERMOY – Vou lhe dizer o que você viu. Viu um homem capaz de qualquer coisa. E isso incendiou sua vidinha. Viu um homem que poderia dar cabo de seus filhos e você não correu dele, mas para ele. Foi isso que atraiu você quando me conheceu e é isso que mantém você perto de mim. Túmulos, lápides, a excitação dos cemitérios e a promessa de novos funerais.

FRANCES – Você é capaz de dizer qualquer coisa para ter companhia em sua carnificina.

FERMOY – Você me queria e ainda me quer. Só seu orgulho a detém.

FRANCES – Eu queria bem a meu primeiro marido. Já estava farta de você antes mesmo da lua de mel. Você roubou-me a vida, tirou meus filhos de mim, tirou tudo que eu pensava que era e eu, uma boba sem nenhuma iniciativa, abri as portas para o ataque. Nunca mais.

FERMOY – Quer o divórcio? Você é quem manda.

FRANCES – Você pensa que vai se livrar facilmente? Onde ela está?

FERMOY – Você jamais saberá.

FRANCES – Venho de uma família de pessoas de bem, meu pai costumava salvar aranhas no bar, pegava os ratos nas mãos, levava-os para fora e os soltava no campo, pessoas boas, Charlie, James, Ariel, pessoas meigas, meigas, meigas, não há lugar para elas neste ninho de cobras. Onde ela está? (FERE-O COM UMA FACA)


FRANCES – (MAIS UMA ESTOCADA) – Onde ela está?

FERMOY – Você pensa que pode acabar comigo... Me dê isso.


FRANCES – E você pensava que eu tinha medo de faca. (OUTRA FACADA) Onde ela está?

FERMOY – (CAI NO CHÃO. ELA SOBE EM CIMA DELE) – Não... Frances... não... Pare... pare.

FRANCES – E por acaso você parou quando Ariel gritou por clemência? Parou? Diga onde ela está.

FERMOY – Não era... isso... Bom Deus em sua...

FRANCES – Fale. Onde ela está?


FRANCES – Lago Cuura.



Copyright © Society for Irish Latin American Studies, 2009

Published: 02 July 2009
Edited: 20 November 2009

Rodrigues Carrasco de Mesquita, Zoraide 'Two Contemporary Medeas' and the Irish-Argentine Dimension' in "Irish Migration Studies in Latin America" 7:2 (July 2009), pp. 195-204. Available online  (www.irlandeses.org/imsla0907.htm), accessed .

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