The Invisible Morrison Jeffrey

by Duncan Wells

Scene Seven

The Walls Begin To Crumble

Music Cue: Oh Johnny! Oh! - Scene: The home of Hilton Hayworth The Third

The music overlaps the scene. Lights rise on Hilton Hayworth in pants, undershirt and socks. He is checking himself out in the mirror. Patricia, the maid, enters to catch him at the mirror. She lays out his shoes, shirt and suit jacket and continues cleaning up around him, dusting, etc…. Music fades while Hayworth sits to put on his shoes.

Hayworth: Jessica? (Pause) Jessica? Where the hell is that woman?

Patricia: I believe she's talking to someone on the telephone sir.

Hayworth: Talking to who?

Patricia: I…I'm not sure sir.

Hayworth: Jessica? Christ! Jessica!!!

She enters.

Jessica: Will you stop yelling?

Hayworth: I'm not yelling I was….I was just trying to find out if you were going to be ready in time to go with me.

Jessica: Go with you? I'm going to St. Martha. Remember?

Hayworth: Oh for the love of God, I know where you're going. I thought you would want me to drop you off at the train station.

He puts the shirt on

Jessica: Oh…well, I suppose.

Hayworth: Then are you ready or not? Patricia, did you pack Missus Hayworth's bags?

Patricia: No sir, Missus Hayworth wanted to-

Jessica: I packed my own bags Hilton. Patricia?

Jessica nods for her to leave

Patricia: Yes, ma'am.

Patricia begins to exit

Hayworth: Which means you're ready to go out the door then, right?

Jessica: Yes Hilton. Whenever you want. Just say the word! Just snap your fingers.

Hayworth: Don't be a smart alec Jessica. Patricia, you're not finished here, are you?

Patricia looks to Jessica. Jessica nods yes and points her the way out.

Patricia: Ah…yes sir, I am.

Hilton: Well, my briefcase is on the desk in the study. Would you bring it to the kitchen?

Patricia: Yes sir.

Hayworth: And would you put Jessica's bags there as well?

Jessica: That's alright Patricia. I'll take care of my own bags. I have a few things I still have to put in there. You can go now.

Patricia exits

Hayworth: A few more things? You'd think you were going for a month not two days.

Jessica: Oh please, don't start.

Hayworth: You're only going to your mother's for the love of God! You don't need to pack a complete wardrobe.

Jessica: Hilton, I have a train to catch. I don't have time for this.

Hayworth: And I have to get to the office and pick up a presentation we've been working on.

Jessica: So, let's go shall we?

Hayworth: Don't know what the hell you have to go to St. Martha's for.

Jessica: Hilton, I'm going to visit my mother.

Hayworth: I know why you're going Jessica. I just don't know why she needs you up there so often.

Jessica: She's 78 years old.

Hayworth: You were there just last week.

Jessica: I was there two weeks ago Hilton.

Hayworth: I don't see why your mother can't come down here.

Jessica: She doesn't like to travel.

Hayworth: She doesn't like to travel. She's got the gout. She's got a bad back.

Jessica: Alright Hilton. Enough!


Hayworth: Who were you talking to?

Jessica: What?

Hayworth: On the telephone. Who were you talking to?

Jessica: Oh…ah, no one…the, ah…the dry cleaner. I have to pick up a dress there today.

Hayworth: A dress?

Jessica: Yes a dress.

Hayworth: I thought you were in a rush to catch the morning train to St. Martha's.

Jessica: Hilton, do I have to explain every little thing I do?

Hayworth: No Jessica you don't have to explain every little thing you do, but when I ask a question the least you can do is respond.

Jessica: All I ever get from you is a cross examination.

Hayworth: Oh for Christ sake! Look, all I'm asking is how do you expect to pick up a dress from the dry cleaner when you're supposed to be meeting the train a 8:50?

Jessica: Ok Hilton forget it, alright? I was going to pick up the dress before I left but just…..just forget it.

Hayworth: Don't know how the hell you expect to fit it in with all of the other stuff you usually take with you.

Jessica: I said forget it, ok?

Hayworth: Ok!

Jessica: Christ!

Hilton: Stupid tie! Here fix this will you?

She does

Jessica: Will you be in your office all day?

Hayworth: No. I just told you I have to drop by to pick up a presentation.

Jessica: And then what? I mean, if I need to contact you or something?

Hayworth: Forget it. I've got meetings. I've got some very important business to take care of with people from the International Clothing Manufacturers. I won't be anywhere near the office.

Jessica: Oh, a meeting? Where at?

Hayworth: Where at? What the hell does it matter, where at?

Jessica: Sigh! I was just wondering but if it's going to upset you, never mind. It's not important.

Hayworth: At the Pentscot Hotel, ok? We booked a meeting room.

Jessica: Thank you!

Hayworth: You're welcome.

Jessica: Sounds important

Hayworth: It's important alright. This meeting is going to lead to the Hayworth Fabric Company becoming a direct competitor on the European market.

Jessica: Europe?

Hayworth: That's what I said, Europe! With the Prime Minister of England just declaring war on Nazi Germany it means that it's only a matter of time before we jump in.

Jessica: We?

Hayworth: We….the United States?

Jessica: Oh.

Hayworth: If I can close this deal before that happens, then the Hayworth Fabric Company won't just have it's foot in the door, we will be completely inside the door. This is going to make us the third largest fabric manufacturing company in the country. Parachutes, uniforms, linen, clothing…the manufacturing of canvas alone is going to put us through the roof.

Jessica: Hmmm! Europe…sounds nice.

Hayworth: Ha! Nice? Now there's an understatement if I ever heard one….so are you ready?

Jessica: Ready? For what?

Hayworth: The train station?

Jessica: Oh…yes…sure, I'll…I'll get my bags.

Hayworth: You do that….and check the kitchen to make sure Patricia left my briefcase there.

Jessica: I will. I'll bring it to the car.

She begins exit

Hayworth: I'll be there in a minute. (Pause) Oh and Jessica?

Jessica: Yes?

Hayworth: You know what today is, right?

Jessica: Thursday.

Hayworth: October 12th

Jessica: Oh, Christ!

Hayworth: You didn't order flowers?

Jessica: No.

Hayworth: It's the fifth anniversary of his death Jessica. I think you could have at least remembered that much.

Jessica: Hilton, I didn't order flowers ok? I forgot. I'll…I'll call the florist when I arrive in St. Martha's and have them deliver them to the graveyard. Now, hurry up!

She exits. Hayworth talks to himself in the mirror.

Hayworth: Ha! Right! You do that Jessica! You call the florist. Have him do it! Like everything else in your god damned life! Have somebody else do it for you! (Character Change) Good day gentlemen. My name is Hilton Hayworth the Third, president of the Hayworth Fabric Company here in Beldune. We would like to begin our presentation today by telling you that we have been producing quality fabrics for half a century, that we can provide you with as much material as you need and we can ship it to anywhere in the world.

Laughs to himself

….Yes, sir! Absolutely sir! The Hayworth Fabric Company is proud to be a supplier of quality, durable fabrics to our boys overseas. Proud indeed! Yes sir…oh, yes sir…God Bless America!

Lights fade on Scene Seven and rise on Scene Eight - even Transition.

Scene Eight

Happy Anniversary To You

Music Cue: None - Scene: Morrison's room

The room is dimly lit. Morrison removes a small box from a paper bag. He opens the box and removes a cupcake. He places a candle in the cupcake. He speaks and sings not wanting anyone to hear.

Morrison: Shhhh! Don't let nobody hear you.

He opens the box and places cup cake on the table.

Shhhhh! Don't let nobody see you.

He strikes a match


He lights the candle and sings slowly and quietly.

Happy Anniversary to youuuuuuu………happy Anniversary to youuuuuuuuu……. happy Anniversary…..Missah James Pottahhhhhh ……….. Happy Anniversary ….…to…………youuuuuuu.

Spoken in a whisper

… Happy Anniversary Mittah Pottah!

He blows out candle. Black out.

Scene Nine

And Now A Brief Message From Your Local Dry Cleaner

Music Cue: Bie Mir Bist Du Schon - Scene: Morrison's newspaper stand.

During the song is seen the hustle and bustle of downtown activity. The song is interrupted by the news of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Once the news bulletin begins, the downtown people (all except Morrison) slow their pace and begin listening carefully to the news broadcast. Morrison is not affected by the news. He continues business around his news paper stand by putting up an Uncle Sam Wants You recruitment poster. Upon the fade of the broadcast, Morrison is left behind the counter, reading a comic book and laughing to himself. Hayworth enters upon the fade of the news broadcast, takes a paper and interrupts the moment.

Hayworth: What the hell are you laughing at?

Morrison: Nuttin, Sir. Morrison not laughin' at nuttin'.

Hayworth: There's a war going on you know.

Morrison: Morrison know. Yes sir! Iss...Issa war...Morrison know.

Hayworth shakes his head with pity

Hayworth: I'll take the paper and a fountain pen. I'll need a bottle of ink too.

Morrison: A pencil?

Hayworth: No, not a pencil. I said a fountain pen and ink!

Morrison: Issa pencil Mittah Hay'earth sir. I got pencil.

Hayworth: I said a fountain pen!

Morrison: But I…issa….I onnie gotta pencil

Hayworth: I said a pen! What the hell's wrong with you?

Morrison: But I got onnie a pencil Mittah Hay'earth sir.

Hayworth: What, you don't sell pens?

Morrison: Uh uh!

Hayworth: Ink?

Morrison: Uh uh!

Hayworth: Damn! I can't go all the way back to the office to pick up a lousy pen.

Morrison: Issa goo' pencil.

Hayworth: I know it's a pencil you stupid moron! You told me already.

Morrison cowers and busies himself. Enter Mayor Callahan. Hayworth reads his paper paying half a mind to the Mayor's conversation.

….god damned idiot!

Enter Mayor Callahan. He gets a paper.

Mayor: Mister Hayworth! How are you today sir?

Hayworth: Ahhh Mayor Callahan. I'm fine. Thank you for asking.

Mayor: Checking the markets I suppose?

Hayworth: No, actually I'm checking up on the news of the war. Just seeing how we're doing over there.

Mayor: American soldiers are dying.

Hayworth is amused

Hayworth: Well, it is war Mister Mayor, and war does have it's casualties.

Mayor: Oh, please, don't get me wrong. I agree with you. I would just feel better knowing there weren't so many of ours.

Hayworth: Honestly, now that the sleeping giant has been awakened, one can only wish that we continue on toward Germany to get this fellow, Adolph Hitler, out of the way.

Mayor: I for one suspect you'll see that very wish come true, Mister Hayworth.

Hayworth: Yes…yes…so do I Mister Mayor…so do I


So what brings you downtown so early?

Mayor: I just dropped my daughter off at the train station. It's her first day on the job tomorrow at the Governor's mansion.

Hayworth: I'm glad to hear.

Mayor: I want to thank you for putting in a word for her.

Hayworth: Don't mention it, my good friend. It was the least I could do.

Mayor: Someday, I hope to occupy the Governor's mansion myself.

Hayworth puts aside his paper

Hayworth: Pardon me? The Governor's mansion?

Mayor: Well, I've….I've thought about it…you know…down the road

Hayworth: Mayor Callahan, you surprise me. You have aspirations of becoming Governor of this state?

Mayor: Politics is my life Mister Hayworth. My job is working for the people, so yes, I have thought about someday becoming Governor.

Hayworth: Hmmm! I had no idea. That's interesting…very interesting indeed!

Mayor: Oh, and by the way, I met Missus Hayworth on the platform. She's off to visit her mother for a few days I see.

Hayworth: Yes…off to visit her mother…ha! Again.

Mayor: Ahh, mother's and daughter's Mister Hayworth. They are inseparable are they not?

Hayworth: Humph!

Mayor: And what's this terrible rumor I've been hearing that you might be relocating.

Hayworth: Relocating?

Mayor: That's what I heard.

Hayworth: The rumor is false, Mister Mayor.

Mayor: You know we'd hate to lose you. You are Beldune's largest employer.

Hayworth: Ha! I'm well aware of that.

Mayor: Your wife said something about Europe?

Hayworth: My wife?

He sighs

Hayworth: My wife talks a little too freely if you ask me.

Mayor: Well that's what she told me.

Hayworth: My wife only pays attention to half of what she hears, Mr. Mayor. Half of what she hears! We are not moving to Europe.

Mayor: Well, not you personally but Hayworth Fabrics, I mean.

Hayworth: Mr. Mayor, no one is going to Europe….

Mostly to himself

….Christsake! If people would only stop listening to gossip, and rumor around here.

Enter Barmen. He is a chain smoker.

Mayor: Mister Barmen! And how are you today?

Barman: Good sir…and yourself?

Barmen takes a paper and leaves the money

Mayor: Wonderful! Feeling great! On your way to the shop a little late today aren't you?

Barmen: My son was in this morning to open for me.

Mayor: Ahh yes! You have your son down there working for you now, don't you! That's good. You get to be father and boss.

Barmen: It's the worst of both worlds Mister Mayor…believe me.

Mayor: It's still great to be the boss though, is it not?

Barmen: Ah…well…yes, I suppose.

Mayor: Isn't that right Mr. Hayworth.

Hayworth: What's that?

Mayor: I was just saying to Barmen here that it's great to be the boss.

At first, Hayworth speaks with half a mind while reading his paper.

Hayworth: Humph! Oh yes, Mayor Callahan…great to be the boss. Really great! Life is so much easier, so much better when you have someone to boss around. Isn't that right Barmen?

Barmen: What? Ah…well…I, ah…I only have a small business Mister Hayworth. It's ah…it's only myself, and my son. My…my situation is much different than yours.

Hayworth: Oh then you should really try and expand. The more people you have to boss around the better it is.

Barmen: You're sarcasm is noted Mister Hayworth.

Hayworth: Sarcasm? Not at all my good man! Life is one great big bowl of cherries when you're the boss of so many. Isn't that right Mayor Callahan?

Mayor: Well, I admit that I enjoy the benefits of my position.

Hayworth: Ha! The benefits of your position…very well put. Very well put indeed! The benefits of authority…the benefit of power…and that's what it's all about. Authority and power…never mind the business of running the business itself, never mind the profit margin or the competition, never mind staffing. Of course now, with the war going on, most of my more productive employees are now working overseas fighting in the war. But still, even with the women taking over I can't complain. I mean, as long as I have someone to boss around….that's all that really matters.

Barmen laughs nervously. He doesn't find Hayworth's ranting funny

Barmen: Ah…ha! I ah…I really have to be on my way now. Good day, gentlemen.

And begins his exit

Hayworth: Oh, Barmen, wait! Speaking of authority, I wonder if you can't have my wife's dress delivered to my house sometime today? I would like you to deliver it personally if you don't mind. Say, three o'clock sharp? Just leave it with the day maid.

Barmen: Your wife's dress sir? I don't believe we have a dress belonging to your wife in the shop.

Hayworth: Oh yes, she was talking to you this morning on the telephone about it. Said she was going to pick it up?

Barmen: She wasn't talking to me sir.

Hayworth: Then…then maybe it was your son she was talking to.

Barmen: My son is stone deaf sir…can't hear a thing. Remember?

Hayworth is puzzled

Barmen: But that doesn't mean her dress isn't in the shop. I'll check when I go in. If it's there I'll certainly make sure it's delivered to your home some time today. Mister Mayor? Mister Hayworth?

Barmen exits. Hayworth is deep in thought. Mayor walks into downstage spot. Lights fade on a confused Hayworth.

Mayor: Hmmm! Seems to be a little confusion over this dress eh, Mister Hayworth? It's in the shop, it's not in the shop. I suppose it's exactly as you said - your wife only listens to half of what she hears. Of course, like they say, if a wife only listens to half of what she hears and the husband only pays attention to half of what the wife says, imagine the kind of misinformation he's walking around with. Ha! My Grandmother used to be like that, God rest her soul. The woman had so much on her mind that all of the little things became scattered around up there in her head…one thought lying on top of another thought that was lying on top of another thought, hiding behind each other so that when she needed the information she couldn't find it. I get like that sometimes too. I could blame it on old age if I was old enough but I'm not, so I suppose I have to blame it on the fact that I am forever trying to balance too many things at the same time…too much information and not enough brain to keep in all in order. A man is a fool for listening to his brain sometimes…..things he might believe to be true are actually far from the truth….the information he has stored up there, sometimes it's….well, sometimes it's just not dependable for one reason or another…..maybe because he forgot half of the truth of the matter and the rest…well, the rest he made up… really does get to be confusing later on, wouldn't you say, Mister Hayworth? (Pause) Mister Hayworth?

The Mayor shrugs his shoulders.

Lights fade on Scene Nine and rise on Scene Ten - even Transition.

Scene Ten

Stupid Clown

Music Cue: Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy - Scene: Morrison's Room

Music overlaps the scene where we see Morrison sketching a picture. He is just adding the last few finishing touches to it. It is a picture of a clown.

Morrison: Ha! Der Mittah Hay'earth! Finished! It look jus' like you too. Same eyed...same node!

He pins it up

Don't you look spessha? Don't you look smart? Don't you jus' look like da king-o-dah-world! Ha! Stoopid clown! T'ink you smart don't you....t'ink you can get away wit' doin' anyt'ing you want. Ha! But you can't cud Morrison Jeffrey know...yes, he do! Morrison Jeffrey not stoopid Mittah Hay'earth! You mi' t'ink he mi' t'ink he a moron but you wrong Mittah Hay'earth! You really, really wrong.

He talks to the other pictures

Hey ebby-buddy...I like you ahh to meet Mittah Hittin Hay'erth…..da T'ird. Ooooh! He a clown! See? He got da clown node an' da clown eyed. Ebby-buddy say hello!


Tsk! How you like dat Mittah Hay'earth? No buddy say hello to you. Cou' it be dat maybe dey don't like you? Cou' be eh? Cud ya know, I don't like you! I don'hate you...uh, uh...I don' hate you Mittah Hay wort'... but I don' like you. An' I know too dat most of da chil'ren 'roun here don't like you either! Stoopid clown!


Ya know if I wad to make a bet, eh? If I wad to make a bet, I bet even God don't like you. Ha! T'ink you can call me a moron, eh? Ha! Cos….cos dat what you say, Mittah Hay'earth! You say "Morrison Jeffrey? You a moron"….but I an' no moron…uh uh…. Morrison Jeffrey ain' no moron…he….he was jus' born this way….Morrison Jeffrey, he...he jus' born this' he ain' no moron but Mittah Hay'earth….you the man dat kill Mittah Pottah. You the moron! Ha! Killin' Mittah Pottah who don't do nuttin to nobody…issa stoopid t'ing…. it a moron t'ing! You Mittah Hay'earth…. you the moron……not Morrison Jeffrey…it not Morrison Jeffrey who kill a man an' leave him….leave him there in the wood to die…uh uh! It you Mittah Hay'earth, you! You the moron...ha!

Pause. Morrison shakes his head in disgust and turns away

...stoopid clown.

Freeze as lights fade on Act One.