The Inca

An Opera in Three Acts
Libretto by Donald C. Dilworth

Act 1 Scene 1.  A clearing in the mountains; A procession of Inca Indians enters, bringing a young girl on a litter.  Religious idols, gold utensils, a native priest. It is the year 1537, Peru.  Some Indians sing; others dance.

Chorus:  Viracocha!!  Oh Viracocha!  Viracocha, oh Creator, etc.  Oh conquering Viracocha!  Ever present Viracocha!  You who are in the ends of the Earth without equal!  You who gave life and valor to men, saying, Let this be a man, let this be a woman!  You who made them and gave them being!  Watch over them that they may live in health and peace.  You who are in the high heavens, among the clouds of the tempest, grant this with long life, and accept this sacrifice, Oh Creator.

(The girl is ceremoniously dressed in beautiful garments, kissed by all attending, while an elder holds a knotted string, tying more knots and running his fingers along the strands.  The girl again mounts the litter, and the procession exits.

A group of Spanish conquistadores enters; Friar Vincente de Valverde; Bishop Luque; Pedro Pizarro, who is a young lad; and soldiers.  The Bishop is running his fingers along the strands of a Rosary.)

Bishop:  It’s too high.  I can hardly breathe, and they say it’s because we’re up so high.  The Indians are used to it.  But I’m not!

Pedro:  Doesn’t bother me!  I feel strong!  Look at those peaks!  I never saw anything like them.  All we have in Spain are hills, next to these.  What a wonderful place!  I could be happy here forever.  These Indians are really lucky to have such a nice place all for themselves.

Bishop:  You mean “had”.  This belongs to Spain now.  And to God.

Soldier:  What’s that? (points to Elder)

Friar:  It’s one of those quipus!  Seize him.  Destroy it!

(Soldiers arrest the elder and seize the string.  The Bishop keeps fingering his Rosary, exactly as the Elder had done.)

Elder:  Why do you take it?  Go away, go away!  Leave us in peace!

Friar:  We come in the name of the Lord, to save your souls.

Elder:  You give us nothing but death, nothing but death!

Friar:  I could give you a thousand blessings.  I could grant you a place in Paradise.  I could give you a thousand blessings!  But you must forget this Viracocha.  My blessings are almost as good as the Pope’s!  My Rosary was blessed by the Pope himself!  By the Pope himself!

(Soldiers converse with the Bishop.)

Bishop:  Over there.  And keep it out of the sun.  Find a shady spot.  (To the Friar)  Don’t want to sleep where we’ll be roasted, do we?  (To the soldiers)  By that stone circle, try there.

Friar:  It’s a chapel!

Pedro:  With statues!  Oh, look!  They’re beautiful!  And you said that they were primitive people.  Wow!  I couldn’t make anything as nice as those.  Can I take one back to Spain?

(Friar sees the Inca idols inside a small chapel.)

Friar:  (To soldiers) bring those here!  We find them everywhere!  Smash them all!

(Soldiers smash the idols.)

Elder:  Your god!  Your god has commanded – but Viracocha is more powerful.  Viracocha requires that we worship him as we do.  Take your Bible away.  We have no use for it.  It is false.

Friar:  Blasphemy! That is a sin!  You have sinned; you have sinned!  And that sin is unforgivable!

Bishop:  (to Friar) True, that is in Mark, but in First John we learn that all sins are forgivable.  We must forgive; we must forgive them.

(A small party of Indians enters.  They look at the Spanish, but say nothing.  A young girl is among them.  She spies Pedro, and cannot take her eyes away.)

Friar:  (to Elder) We follow the Commandments of God.  We have destroyed your idols because God has commanded.  They were an affront to God, an affront to God!

Bishop:  “Cursed be the man who maketh any graven image.”  (A page enters, carrying an icon of the Virgin, which he places on the stage.)

Pedro:  But they were so lovely!  Don’t you think they were beautiful?  It’s a shame to destroy them.  If we find any more, will you let me, let me keep one.

Friar:  It’s what they stand for.  This is a heathen faith, and don’t get too attached to it.  Do you know what these people do?

Pedro:  Sure.  They raise crops, I see lots of children running around, and they sing.  Just like us.  And they sing, just like us. We have some beautiful statues in Spain.  I have seen them in Madrid.  We should put them next to these Inca idols.  They would look wonderful together.  Don’t you think?

Bishop:  We do not honor heathens!

Friar:  Do you know what they do?  This ceremony!  Do you know what these heathens are doing here?

Pedro:  Well, a worship service.  I guess.  I liked the chanting!

Friar:  That girl you saw, in the litter.  They anoint her here, the priest blesses her … and then they take her up to the mountaintop and bury her!

Bishop:  Child sacrifice!  Thank God we have come to these people.  We must save their souls, and their lives.  The savages are so convinced by their priests, taught from the time they are small children.  We must save their souls, and their lives!  The natives have been taught to believe, buy their priests, taught from the time that they are small children.  They are so convinced; they are so foolish; they are so sure that it is all correct, that they don’t even protest when they are sent up there to die!  Imagine a girl believing this nonsense!  Just because her mother told her to, because her priest says so.  They have no sense!  Not like in Europe.

Friar:  Thank God we have come.  They can still be saved.

(Francisco Pizarro enters; they all bow.)

Francisco:  (To a soldier) The perimeter is secure.  Check for a breach on that hill, and tell the men to assemble by the bridge.  Resistance has been light, and it worries me.  And get a message to Hernando.  Tell him to wait on the outskirts until we get word from the interior.

Friar:  Your campaign is going well.  You have only to defeat men.  I have to defeat ideas.
Pizarro:  Men are easy to kill.  It’s a shame their ideas do not die with them.

Bishop:  We will see that they do.

Friar:  What is your plan?  Do you wish to address the natives?

Pizarro:  You do it.  That’s your department.  Tell the Indians that we serve the most powerful Prince on the Earth.  Make them understand that we have come to save them!  Save them from that darkness of the mind in which they have doomed their souls to perdition.  Tell them that we will give them knowledge of the true and only God, Jesus Christ, and eternal salvation through Him.  Tell them!  And be sure they understand.

Friar:  I have told them many times, but they will not understand.

(The Inca priest returns, and looks at the shattered idols in horror.)

Francisco:  (to soldiers) Seize him!  I have given orders that all Inca priests are to be killed.

Bishop:  Hold your anger, Governor.  “He that killeth any man shall surely be put to death”.  We must show him mercy, as our Savior would.

Friar:  True, Leviticus says that … but in Exodus we learn that God ordered the people to slaughter their own relatives – their own relatives! – because they rejected Moses’ religion.  So the priest must die.  So the priest must die.  It is God’s will.  (The Bishop nods.)

(All leave except Pedro and the girl.  They heard little of what has been said.)

Girl:  Are you going to kill me too?

Pedro:  I’m not a soldier.  I’m the Governor’s nephew, and I only came along to serve him.  I’m supposed to write a history of eveything that happens here.  What is your name?

Girl:  Song-of-the-Moon.  I am not from here; I am from Cuzco; it’s a long way from here…

Pedro:  I know Cuzco!  We were there early in the campaign.  Splendid temples.  Gold everywhere.

Girl:  But why have you come?

Pedro:  Father de Valverde has already told you.  Some of the others are only after gold though.  Especially the soldiers.  If it’s not gold, they aren’t interested.  See my book?  (shows his notebook)

Girl:  What is it?  I have never seen such a thing.  And what are those marks?  Did you make them?

Pedro:  We call them letters.  You can put the sounds of a man speaking on these pages.  My book will tell a great story, even when I am dead.  It means a great deal.  It has the story of our conquest.  But I want to know about your stories.  How much do you know?  I want to get it all down.

Girl:  Such strange markings!  I don’t know about those things.  All our history is told in the quipus.  (Pedro looks puzzled)  Those strings, knotted, they tell a great story, but I cannot read them.  You have to find the elder, who knows the secret.  But they have taken him away!  All of the elders are gone, and no one can read them now!  And they are burning all of the quipus!

(The Bishop enters, and overhears.)

Why did they kill the priest?  Why do you destroy our quipus?

Bishop:  Because they are full of blasphemy!  Believe me, we want to save you.  We are gentle people.  But before we can save you, every trace of your heathen faith must be destroyed.  And your ceremonies!

Girl:  But then we would die!  How would we get the protection of God?  He demands a sacrifice, and all of our lands prosper and the people are happy because we understand Him and answer Him.

Bishop:  It is forbidden.  “Thou shalt not do so before the Lord thy God”.  (Points to his Bible)  In the Book of Deuteronomy.  The Scriptures is very clear: sacrifice is forbidden, and we are not going to permit it.  No sacrifices!  How can you do such a horrible thing?  To die on the mountain!  All Christians are horrified!

Girl:  It’s a great honor for the chosen one!  She will live with God forever.  You do not understand our ways.  Have you no sacrifices in your country?

Bishop:  Of course.  (Holds up Bible)  It is written:  “The firstborn of thy sons shalt thou give to me.”  And Jephthah vowed unto the Lord to deliver the first person to greet him at his house, as a burnt offering.  It was his daughter, and he did as he promised.  But you must not do it; it is forbidden.

Verily, I say unto you: Our God is a God of love.  Take Him to your heart.

(Soldiers enter, and gather up a few remaining gold utensils overlooked previously.  The King’s accountant Don Diego enters, with his wife Millie, along with aides.)

Millie:  It looks just like all the others.  Except it’s hotter here.  Why do they make everything out of stone?

Don Diego:  They are savages.

Millie:  I hope the Governor finds a cooler village to attack next.  And all the hills!

(Soldiers gather the plunder and show it to the accountant.  He enters data in his ledger book.  Millie spots a piece of jewelry that she likes, and grabs it when the others are not looking.)

Don Diego:  One fifth for the King.  He will expect his share.  Pizarro will deliver what he promised.

Girl:  Who is your king?  Who is your king?

Don Diego:  Charles the Fifth.  The greatest Prince in the world!  Cortez returned to Spain.  He carried wealth beyond belief!  Treasure from Moctezuma.  The King grew thirsty for more, made Francisco the governor, and sent him here.  He will be pleased.  Already we have secured more than Cortez, and we’re not done yet.  All the temples in Cuzco have been emptied.

Girl:  You take our land!  You destroy our temples!  You make our people slaves!  We pray and offer sacrifices to God that you will leave us alone.  That is why we do it.  We pray that you will all go away and leave us in peace!  Our Viracocha is a God of Peace.

Don Diego:  The Governor loves your land more than you do.

Friar:  But truly, ours is a God of Peace.  It is written: “Peace I leave with you, and my peace I give unto you.”

Bishop:  True, that is in John, but in Matthew we learn that “I came not to send peace, but a sword.”  (The Friar nods.)

End of Scene 1

Act 1 Scene 2.  The Spanish encampment.  Pizarro, soldiers, Priest, Bishop, Don Diego, Millie, on one side of the stage; Pedro, Girl, and an old Indian woman on the other.  The two groups ignore each other.  In the conversations below, the two sides are independent, each not hearing the other.

Pizarro:  These natives have such wealth!  And they don’t even know what their gold is worth!  To them it is mere decoration!  Ha!

Don Diego:  They have no money.  They use no money.  They don’t even know the value of money.  And they have no writing, so they cannot record the value of anything.

Millie: But we can.  (looks carefully at the loot)  But we can.

Friar:  But they did account for things.  Those quipus; they recorded their population, the size of their crop, and the number selected for the army.  I’m told that they could even record stories and beliefs.

Bishop:  More reason to destroy them.

Millie:  And they get so upset!  Over pieces of string.

Pizarro:  They value them as we do money.

Millie:  Very stupid.  What do you know about these savages?

Friar:  One of them told me about a vision a king was supposed to have had.

Bishop:  A message from God!  Did it tell him of our coming?  Was it the figure of the Child?

Friar:  It was something about an eagle; it was chased by smaller birds.  And then it died.  That’s all I know.

Bishop:  If it wasn’t the Child, then it was not a real vision.

Friar:  They are a bloody people!

Bishop:  Given to the foulest sort of violence.  They are fond of sports.  They play a game with a ball, hitting it with their bodies but not their hands.  I don’t know the rules.  But sometimes the members of the losing team would all be put to death!  Can you imagine such cruelty?

Pedro:  (to Girl) Tell me about your people.  I want to get it all down.

Girl:  First, tell me about yours!  No one has told me anything except what they have seen themselves.  Have you gone to other countries too?

Pedro:  Well, when Cortez conquered Mexico, he converted all of the Indians to his religion, and smashed all of their idols.  Then he took their gold back to Spain.

Girl:  Did he burn their quipus too?

Pedro:  The Aztec did not use them.  They had real writing – not like ours – but they could write on a kind of paper.  They made thousands of books – and Cortez burned them all.

Girl:  All of them!

Pedro:  No.  One he took back to Spain for the King.  Of course no one can read it.

Bishop:  They hold nothing sacred!  If a man was found in treason against the king, he was executed – and his bones were made into flutes, to be played in scorn by the priests.

Girl:  Do you kill people in your own country too?  I have seen so many killed by your soldiers.

Pedro:  Killing is forbidden!  Our Bible says clearly: “Thou shalt not kill.”  Except for heretics, of course.  They call it an auto-da-fé.  That’s when they tie heretics to a pole and burn them alive.

Girl:  How awful!  Do they still do it?  Who are the heretics?  I hope you are not from that tribe!

Pedro:  Don’t worry.  A heretic is someone who decides that the faith that he was taught as a child is not correct.  But I’m sure that it is.  They still do it sometimes.

Friar:  I have heard that after one of their battles – the enemy was a tribe of cannibals – they killed 20,000 and threw them into a lake.  The “Lake of Blood” they called it.

Girl:  How did you defeat our King, the Sapa Inca Atahualpa?  His army would cover all the hills, and you are so few.

Pedro:  Pizarro, with 180 men, camped in the shelter around the plaza at Caxamarca.  They pretended to be friendly, and since their force was so small, the King did not fear them.  He greeted them the next day in friendship, bringing thousands of citizens to pay them honor.

Bishop:  These Inca are a bloody race.

Pedro:  On a signal from the Governor, his troops fired a cannon, and all his men leapt on the Indians.  Of course, we had swords, and the Indians were unarmed.  So Pizarro’s men killed about 7,000 of them – many more had their arms cut off – and then they captured Atahualpa.

Girl:  What did they do to him?

Friar:  We must convert them to the True Faith!

Pedro:  They made him collect all of the gold and silver in the kingdom, and bring it for ransom.  When they had filled a room with it, they voted to burn him alive.

Bishop:  The Inca are a cruel race!

Girl:  The poor King!

Pedro:  But then the Friar urged them to have mercy.  He is a very kind man.  He made an offer to the King: Convert to Christ, and you will not be burned alive.  So the King agreed to be converted, and he was strangled instead.

Friar:  They are cruel and sinful!  I have learned that the Inca sleep naked!  What an outrage against God!

Millie:  What an outrage!  What an outrage!

Pedro:  I was shocked when I heard about it, but that happens in war.  Don’t your people make war?  I have heard some awful stories.

Girl:  Some of the kings did.  I’m glad I’m not a boy.  I’d have to serve in the army.  Then I would have to kill people, and I could never do that.  What a waste!  Why can’t everyone be good to each other?  Why?  Do you understand it?

Pedro:  There are many things I don’t understand.  If it were up to me, we could be friends.  I would like to be your friend.  Then we could go to Spain.  Would you like to come to Spain with me?  There are cathedrals that would make your heart sing!  And the soft plains of Andalusia!  You would remember them forever.  And the music!  And the music!  There is a tribe called Gypsies, and they dance while somebody plays guitar.  And the singing!  I know you would love Spain.  I’m going to ask my uncle to let me take you back.  But that’s only if your parents don’t object.  Tell them that you would be …

Girl:  Stop!  Don’t say any more.  My parents were killed.

Pedro:  I’m sorry.

Bishop:  There was a war between rival kings, and they killed an envoy.  They made his skin into drumheads!  Imagine!  Dum, dum, dum, dum … while the bone flutes are playing.  Music of the Devil!

Friar:  Did you know that, after that war, the victorious king, not being of the royal line on both sides, forced his mother to marry the dead body – the dead body – of the old king, so he would be legitimate by marriage!  Horrible!

Millie:  Horrible!

Bishop:  In their palace, they had whole trees made of solid gold.  And in the temple – the temple! – they had women chosen for their beauty, chosen for their beauty, to serve as concubines, concubines for lucky officials!  Sinful!

Millie:  Sinful!

Girl:  I heard that when Cuzco fell, the Spanish soldiers gathered the nuns from the temple and raped them all.

Pedro:  According to the Bishop, that was okay.  You just have to believe it.  Some things cannot be understood by ordinary people like you and me.  But trust the Bishop.  It was okay.

Millie:  Our people would never keep concubines.  Spanish citizens do not use women like that.  It would be a sin.

Bishop:  Only in Spain.  When Spanish soldiers used the Inca women in Cuzco, it was not a sin at all!  Many women were taken by the soldiers; it was not a sin at all.  Even some of the clergy, some of the clergy used them for their pleasure.  It’s customary in warfare and permitted by Scripture.

Friar:  Correct.  The Children of Israel were commanded to slay all of the Midianite men and boys, and all of the women except those who were virgins.  Those they were told to use as they pleased.  So we have followed the will of God.  So the soldiers and I have committed no sin.

Millie:  Certainly!  If the Bible says, then it was the correct thing to do. … Sleeping naked!  I’ve never seen such evil people.

Bishop:  And in Cuzco, before the victory over Atahualpa, our forces held a Mass to gain the blessing of God.  It was through that blessing that we won.  Glory to God!

Millie:  Glory to God!

Girl:  How much of our country have you seen?  If you go higher in the mountain, and wait until evening, you can see how the light plays on the cliffs.  It depends on the season.  In the summer they turn all colors of blue and violet, with green things here and there.  And in winter, it’s more black-and-white – but you can see the depth much better.  Sometimes I stay there for hours.  Have you seen our mountains?

Pedro:  Not yet.  We came up from the valley this morning.  Could you show it to me?  I would not want to leave here without seeing it with you.

Friar:  Did you know that when a boy was raised in the Inca family by an older relative, and when he became of age, she had the duty to teach him about sex?  Sex!  By example!  She and the boy sinned together!  It was part of his education!  An outrage!

Millie:  An outrage!

Pedro:  Now tell me something about yourself.  How did you come to this mountain?  We are far from Cuzco.

Friar:  And listen to this:

Girl:  Please! ….

 Friar: In order to be a true Inca King, he had to be of pure blood.  So they always married their sister, so their son would qualify!  That is incest!

Millie:  That is incest!

Girl:  Please!  Don’t ask me about that!  When I think about it I am very sad.  Don’t ask me to say any more.

Bishop:  But no!  Incest is not a sin.  Did not Lot’s two daughters lie with him?  Got him drunk and had children by him.  And Lot was declared “just” and “righteous”.

Millie:  Yes!  You are right.  It is not a sin.  It is just and righteous.  (The Friar nods.)

Pedro:  Did you come alone?

Girl:  Please!  I asked you not to talk about it.  I was brought here by an old woman.  She has died.  Ask no more!

(The Accountant leaves, with some soldiers and most of the loot.  A messenger enters, with letters for Pizarro and the Accountant.  Millie takes the Accountant’s letter while the messenger reads to Pizarro.)

Millie:  For Don Diego?  I’ll give it to him.

Pizarro:  There have been losses in the mountains.  Tell Hernando to move the reinforcements from Tumbez and get up there right away.  (The messenger leaves.)

End of Act 1

Act 2 Scene 1.  Soldiers gathered in the camp.  As the chorus sings, soldiers pantomime the action.

To the front! To the front!
We will charge the Inca, …
To a man, to a man, we
Spent the night fearfully, …
On the hill …
Enemy campments …
On the hill were the Inca, Inca, Inca.

How many thousands? …
Forty thousand …
Trusting in God we took our position, took …
Waiting, waiting …
Waiting for the signal, …


Boom went the cannon, …
Charge the enemy, …
To the Inca, …

Sabers flashing, …
Screams!  Bugles, …

Cut off their heads,
Cut off their arms!
Screams!  Bugles!

Blow the bugle,
Horses charging
Blow the bugle!
To the King!

Sabers flashing, get the bearers!
Get the bearers! Cut!  Slash!
Charge, horses to his litter, …
Cut off their arms,
Cut off their heads!
Arms on the ground!
Heads on the ground,

We have the King!
Glory to God!

(The Friar enters and is shocked at their drunkenness.  They kneel and he blesses them.  They depart, and the Friar sees a glass still full of booze.  When they are not looking, he drinks it.)

End of Scene 1

Act 2 Scene 2.  Evening, outside the camp, Pedro and the girl are sitting alone, holding hands.

Pedro:  It is lovely here.  This is lovely.  Cool, and the breeze….

Girl:  It is often like this in the evening.  My mother used to take us into the mountains near Cuzco.  She said it was as close to Heaven as we could get an still be alive.  I remember those days.

Pedro:  And think: There were days like this before we were born, and there will be many others, after we are gone.  And then we will never see them again. Think of how lucky we are to enjoy this place, right now, when nobody else is here to see it.  It can be very beautiful, even if nobody is watching.  Imagine a beautiful spot with nobody watching.  Is it still beautiful?  The mountains don’t know how beautiful they are.  If there are no people around, in what sense are they beautiful?

Girl:  Oh, look! How the sun catches the clouds!  You can’t see them from the village.

Pedro:  And only on one side of the mountain.  It separates them from the fields over there.  Look!  They are dry, and nothing grows there.  I’m glad there is no mountain between us.

Girl:  There is.

Pedro:  Oh, no!  Look.  The mountain separates the two fields, but between us is just a few inches.

Girl:  Yes, there is.  The Friar!

Pedro:  The Friar?  The Friar?  Yes, he is like a mountain, strong, majestic.

Girl:  He is cold like a stone!  He is hard like a stone!  Just like a mountain, and nothing grows in his shadow.

Your uncle; is he a great man in Spain too?

Pedro:  Actually, he isn’t.  Not yet, at least.  He grew up tending swine, his parents were not married to each other; he cannot read or write, they taught him little, only religion.

Girl:  Pedro!  Look at those people over there.  The villagers, not one of them is looking up!  Why are we looking and not them?  Are we different?  Why don’t they come up here and see it too?  Why are we the only ones?  They’re just sitting there!

Pedro:  They don’t remember when they were young.  Maybe when we get older we won’t enjoy it anymore.  Something must happen to them.  Will we be like that someday too?

Girl:  I think we’re just different.  Different from them, I mean.  We are alike in some ways, don’t you think?

Pedro:  Yes.  Lots of ways.  But you know what the Friar will say.  There’s a big difference!  He keeps talking about God.  He thinks he knows more than your priest.  As if somehow it mattered.  Is it so important that you say – why should you say the same prayers?  You are as faithful, just as he.

Girl:  You have only one?

Pedro:  One what?

Girl:  One god?

Pedro:  Yes, and what do they teach you?  How many?

Girl:  We have several, but the Sun God, the Moon God, and Viracocha are most powerful.  So there are three, I guess.  The others are less important.

Pedro:  Just like us!  The Trinity.  Three.

Girl:  Oh, look!  They are bringing the Vicuñas back from pasture.  Oh, look!  Look at the babies!  I love it when they bring them in!  The mothers are fed, but the babies are still hungry.  Oh look!  Oh, look!  They try to nurse, but the mother won’t hold still.  Isn’t it funny!  Don’t you think so?  Isn’t it funny?

Pedro:  Have you learned how to care for the animals?  I was raised in the city, so I don’t know much about it.  How can you stand it when you have to kill them?  I know they are used for food.

Girl:  You talk of killing.  And the soldiers kill!  And the Friar said your god commands them to kill.  How can that be?  How can it be?  Is it true?

Pedro:  The Bishop will explain it.  It’s all in here (holds up his Bible).  Someday, when you hear the stories, you’ll be convinced too.  They are very beautiful.

Girl:  We have some beautiful stories too.

Pedro:  Oh, tell me one!

Girl:  A young man was called into the army.  Left his wife and young son at home.  She was very sad.  As if to console her, a white butterfly entered the house, and she felt better for his visit.  It returned the next day, and every day thereafter.  One day her son asked, “Mother, what is this white butterfly?”  

“It is my lover.”

The time came when her husband was finished with his army duty and returned home.  The boy met him, and told him that his mother was working in the fields.  The father then asked the boy if they had missed him, and what they had done each day.  The child told him about their time at home, and then he said “And every day mother’s lover came to see her.”

The father was filled with anger, and when the woman returned, he killed her.  Later that day, as the boy and he were sitting together sadly, the butterfly came again.  “Look, father”, cried the boy.  “Here is mother’s lover here to see her again.”

And you Spaniards, do you ever kill your wives?

Pedro:  Never!  And if you were my wife you would never have reason to fear.  I would protect you even against the Governor and the soldiers.

Girl:  Would you protect me from the Friar?

Pedro:  What?  The Friar?  He is a man of God.  The Friar is a man of God.  He has never hurt anyone!  (The Girl looks away.)

(The Bishop and Millie enter, ignoring the others.  Again, the conversations are independent.)

Millie:  (to the Bishop) It was so boring.  I was listening to them, but it was so boring!  They didn’t see me, so I just walked out.  A stupid story about a white butterfly.  You really have to speak to Pedro.  He is too fond of the little savage.

Bishop:  What was in the letter to your husband?

Millie:  For Don Diego?  It was from Filipillo.  Don Diego’s brother has been killed.  I couldn’t let him see it!  He’s better off if he doesn’t know.  So I burned the letter.  So I burned it.  He is so lucky that I am looking out for him!

Bishop:  How did he die?

Millie:  In the battle at Vilcabamba.  I wish Manuel had been there!  He’s our family physician.  He could have bled him; he could have saved him.  He would have been saved.  He could have bled him, and he would have been saved!

Tell the doctors!  Whenever our soldiers are wounded, just bleed them!  It always works.  I don’t know why they are so stupid.  Just bleed them!  It always works!  Am I the only person here who understands these things?

And the Governor!  Tell him to part his hair in the middle.  He looks terrible the way he wears it.  And you!  Your collar is too long.  (Adjusts the Bishop’s cap.)  No one has good taste anymore.

Pedro:  I’m sorry about your parents.  How did it happen?

Girl:  I don’t want to talk about it.

Pedro:  Okay, I won’t.  Well then I won’t.  Do you work in the gardens with the other girls?

Girl:  Sometimes.  But lately I’ve been learning how to weave.  They say I’m doing very well, and sometimes they let me make up my own patterns.  Do you like it? (She shows her dress pattern.)

Pedro:  Very nice!  That gives me some ideas!  If I draw a pattern in my notebook, could you weave it?

Girl:  Sure!  It would be fun.  Let’s try it.

Bishop:  Did you see the Inca treasure that our soldiers are bringing in?  Exquisite workmanship!

Millie:  If you see any nice combs in the gold stuff, I need one.  No point in melting it down with the rest.

Bishop:  Haven’t seen one.  But there is a very nice goblet!  Embossed, the pattern is superb.  Shall I save it for you?

Millie:  Oh, melt it!  Who cares about a bunch of stupid bumps?

Pedro:  What was it like in Cuzco, before the Spanish came?  What was it like, being a girl there?

Girl:  It depends.  When young, girls would gather the flowers and herbs used for medicine and to dye the cloth.  Some of the older ones were taken to be the Virgins of the Sun, to serve in the Temple.

Pedro:  So they could never marry?

Girl:  Oh, it was an honor to be sent to one of the nobles, to be a secondary wife.  Their life was wonderful.  And at the temple, there would be ceremonies, with girls dancing, and jugglers.

(As she talks, a ballet appears, dancing for about five minutes.)

It is the same honor that we feel when we are selected for sacrifice on the mountain.  Then we can help our people.  Our parents are very proud.  Every girl hopes that she will be chosen.

Pedro:  Do you hope to be chosen?  To die on the mountain?

Girl:  I don’t know.  I want to help my people, and many are killed by the soldiers anyway.  But it is not up to me; the priests decide who will go.  God tells them whom to select.  Isn’t it better to live with God forever than to be a slave to the Spanish?  Yes!  I would be happy to go!

Pedro:  I was hoping we could go to Spain.  I thought you wanted to go to Spain with me.  Now you say you want to go; now you say ….

Girl:  Well, yes and no.  It depends on what the priest says.

Pedro:  Some god!  Demanding a virgin!  Which god demands it?

Girl:  I told you about the three main Gods; on feast days we would carry images of them in our processions.  They were sacred to us, as were some of the rocks, springs, caves, tombs, and of course the mummies.  The mummies of the dead kings would be paraded too.  And sometimes they sacrificed animals.

Pedro:  They dug up the mummies, and paraded them?  They paraded the mummies?

Girl:  Of course!  And in their tombs they even had their own harem.  They were treated almost like the Gods, for we believe that they are descended from God.  There were other Gods too; the Earth, Venus, the sea ….

Pedro:  Imagine!  A mummy with his own harem.  Were they still alive?

Girl:  Of course!  And they were faithful to him.  But then we received a prophesy from Viracocha.  It said that foreigners would destroy us.

Pedro:  What happened?

Girl:  There were earthquakes, tidal waves, a green comet.  The moon had three rings, one of them the color of blood.  There were more comets, and lightning struck the royal palace.  Then we saw an eagle attacked by smaller birds.  It fell into the temple square.  They fed it, but it died.  Then we knew the kingdom would end.  What will happen now to our people?  Isn’t there any way you can help us?

Bishop:  (to Millie) How is your family?  And your son?  Is he doing well in school?  Art school, wasn’t it?

Millie:  He’s studying to be a priest.  I want to see him in Heaven when I get there – and priests always go to Heaven.  So I wouldn’t let him study at the academy, as he wanted.  I have saved his soul!  I have saved it!  So I stopped him.  I would not let him go there.  At the art school they sometimes have a naked woman in the same room as the men!  He’s lucky to have me looking out for him.  I’ll see that he becomes a good Christian.

Pedro:  Maybe I can ask my uncle to give you and your family to me.

Girl:  I have no family.

Pedro:  I would treat you very well.

Bishop:  Have you tried some of the native dishes?  Very tasty!  Very tasty, potatoes, they call them.  Delicious!

Girl:  But what about all the others?

Millie:  I certainly don’t care!  I never eat such things.  He who enjoys pleasure has sinned!  I want no pleasure from my food.  

Girl:  But what about all the others?

Millie:  And you!  You know, you’re really not religious enough.  (They walk offstage.)

Pedro:  What can I do?  The Governor makes all the decisions, but I’ll speak to him.  Maybe he’ll listen.  There is mercy, too.

Girl:  He is taking slaves!  Can you imagine what it’s like, being a slave?

Pedro:  But our people were slaves!  The Israelites were captured.  And then God freed them.  He sent plagues against the Egyptians, and killed many of their children.  Many women, many children.  So you see, God is kind.  He freed our people.

Girl:  But he killed the children!  That was not kind!  (The Bishop and Millie return.)

Pedro:  No, no, it was.  But you have to ask the Bishop to explain it.  You just have to believe these things.  Oh, there he is now.  I don’t understand it.  Let’s ask him.

Bishop:  (To Millie) How was your voyage?

Millie:  Too long!  They should move the countries closer together.  Then we could travel back and forth more quickly.

Bishop:  Yes. It’s a long way.  Halfway around the world!

Pedro:  (to Bishop) Father, excuse me.  We have lots of questions (holds up his Bible.)  When you’re free, could you give us a moment?

Bishop:  Not right now; I’m busy.

Millie:  If it’s about the Bible, I can tell you everything about it.  I have read it thirty-two times.

Bishop:  Halfway around the world!

Millie:  Excuse me!  Around?  Surely you don’t believe that nonsense about the “Round Earth”!  It’s just a theory!  The Earth is quite flat, as you would know if you read your Bible.

Bishop:  But it doesn’t say….

Millie: Oh, yes it does!  “Angels preside over the four corners.”  It’s in the Bible.  And where, exactly, are the “four corners” of your round Earth?  Huh?  (The Bishop nods.)

Pedro:  I will speak to the Governor, and see what I can do.

Bishop:  Is there news of the conflict with England?  Did you see any English ships on your way over?

Millie:  England?  England?  Now, where, exactly, is England?  (They stroll offstage.)

End of Act 2

Act 3, Scene 1.  The Spanish camp.  The Friar and Pedro are alone.

Friar:  But they do not love them!  And that is why it is different.

Pedro: How can that be right?  That is a sin, or it should be.

Friar:  You don’t understand.  You’re spending too much time with that Inca girl.  You must avoid her!

Pedro:  But many of the soldiers have taken Inca women for themselves.

(Indians run across the stage, and exit.)

Friar:  Yes, but they do not love them!  That’s the difference.  I can tell that she means a lot to you, and I want to protect your soul.  She is a heathen!  The soldiers cast off the women when they are done with them, so their souls are in no danger.  But you have other ideas, I think.  I will not let it happen.

Pedro:  But what if, what if she converted.  Would it be okay then?

(Pizarro enters, with soldiers.)

Francisco:  The Indians are gathering in the meadow.  Take a squad and watch them.

Soldier:  It must be something big.  They’re all going.  I’ll alert the troops.

(Pizarro and the soldiers exit.  More Indians and soldiers run through.)

Friar:  Looks like an uprising.  We’d better get under cover.

Pedro:  But first, if she converted, what then?  What then?  Would it be all right then?

Friar:  I suppose … but you won’t get very far.  Come on!  We’d better leave quickly.  These heathens insist on believing as they do, even in the face of facts.  They call it “faith”!  Nobody should keep to a belief when we have presented convincing reasons to discard it.  But still they do.  I never could understand it.  Let’s go.  We have to go.  Come on! (starts to leave)

Pedro:  I will convert her!  Will you help?

The Bishop runs in.

Bishop:  They’re not armed.  We can stay here and keep quiet.

Pedro:  Will you help?  Will you help?

Friar:  Well … okay.  It’s my divine calling to convert the heathen.  But you must convince her to listen.  I’m not sure that she ever will.

(A page runs in and whispers to the Bishop, then leaves.)

Bishop:  Oh!  She certainly won’t now!  The villagers are getting ready for another sacrifice.  Everyone is there.  Rumor has it that Song-of-the-Moon has been chosen.

The Girl rushes in, sees Pedro, and runs to him.

Girl:  Pedro!  Pedro!  It’s wonderful!  You must listen!  The priest of Wiñawayna has selected me for an offering!  I’m so excited!  I can hardly wait to tell everyone.

Friar:  (To the Bishop) We should just let them go ahead with it.  Then she will no longer be a problem.  For Pedro’s sake.  Don’t interfere.  (The Bishop nods.)

Pedro:  Song-of-the-Moon!  You can’t go!  I won’t let them!  You don’t know what you’re doing!

Friar:  Pedro, this is very important to them.  You must not intervene.

Pedro:  But it’s pagan!  Why don’t you stop them?

Girl:  It’s a great blessing!  I will be one of the chosen ones!  I’m happier than I have ever been.  God demands it, and surely you don’t think that I would disobey, do you?

Pedro:  Yes!  You must disobey!  When your god or priest tells you nonsense, then you must disobey! Listen to me!  If they do this to you then we will never be able to get….

(Pizarro reenters.)

Pizarro:  It’s a large gathering.  I’ll give the order to break it up.  They’ll not try this again.

Friar:  No, wait.  Let them go ahead with it.  Bring your troops back.

Pizarro:  A heathen ceremony?  Why should we permit it?  I’ll arrest the priest.

Friar:  No, wait.  We don’t want to offend them too much.  We must be merciful.  Leave them alone.  Don’t do anything.

Pizarro:  (To a soldier) recall the men to their quarters.  (Pizarro and soldiers exit.)

Pedro:  You can’t do it!

Girl:  I want to save my people!  

Pedro:  No!  You can’t!  Please!  I … Song-of-the-Moon, I …

Bishop:  Now, Pedro, this is not wise.

Pedro:  Bishop Luque!  We must convert her now!  Please!  There is no time to lose!  (To the Girl) Please!  Listen to me!  Let us teach you about our faith!  Just listen!  You can decide later, but please, give us a chance to save you, to save your life.  Just listen!

Bishop:  If she converts, then of course they cannot sacrifice her, and you could even ….  Very well, if I can save her life and her soul at the same time, I must do it.

Pedro:  Will you listen to what the Friar and the Bishop, will you hear what they have to say?  Please, for my sake?

Girl:  You have been very kind to me, and if your god is really more powerful than ours, perhaps I should know about him.  All right.  I will listen.  But preparations for the sacrifice are already underway. I have to get back right away.

Bishop:  First, about God.  There is only one, and he is a God of love.

Girl:  But Pedro told me about three.  Does that make four now?

Friar:  No, no!  There is only one.

Girl:  But your god is cruel!  He orders the killing of my people!  You’re killing my people!

Bishop:  Here, in the Bible, it is written:  (opens his Bible) God prohibits the killing of the innocent.

Friar:  True, that is in Exodus, but in First Samuel He does order the killing of innocent women and children.

Bishop:  Yes, I had forgotten that.  And in Psalms He orders the children of the Daughters of Babylon to be dashed against the stones.

Friar:  But still, in Chronicles we learn “His mercy endureth forever”, and …

Girl:  Well which is it?

Pedro:  Just listen.  You will understand.

Girl:  They kill us, and make us slaves!

Friar:  You see, in Exodus, it says “Put every man his sword by his side, and slay every man his brother, companion, and neighbor.”  So you see, there is nothing wrong with what we are doing.

Pedro:  But the Commandments given to Moses are very clear:  “Thou shalt not kill; Thou shalt not kill.”

Friar:  Yes, but in Hosea we read “they shall fall by the sword: their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.”…

Bishop:  Yes, but it says, in Leviticus, it says, ….

Pedro:  Make up your minds!  

(A group of Indians enters, in ceremonial dress.  They motion to the Girl to come with them.)

Girl:  Stop!  I’m so confused.  Can’t I just go now?

Friar:  No!  Please!  Let us teach you.  You will learn.  Yes, we take slaves – but in the Bible, in the Book of Joel, it says “And I will sell your sons, and I will sell your daughters, into the hand of the children of Judah, and they shall sell them to the Sabeans, to a …

Bishop:  Yes, but in Isaiah we read “Undo the heavy burdens, let the oppressed go free; break every yoke.”

Friar:  Yes, but in Leviticus it says “Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them ye shall buy, and they shall be your possessions.”  Your possessions!

Bishop:  Undo the heavy burdens, let the oppressed go free.

Friar:  Of them shall ye buy!

Girl:  Stop!  I have heard enough!  Your god says that you must take slaves, and you must not take slaves.  How can you do both?  How can you do both?…

Pedro:  Yes!  Make up your minds!  Make up your minds!  Are you saying two different things?

Bishop:  Not at all!  You see, they are both true.  You see, they are both true.  We must and we must not at the same time.  It is a mystery.

Friar:  Correct!  But let us talk about God Himself.  He is pure spirit, and cannot be seen.

(The Indians become impatient.  Offstage, the chorus of Indians sings their sacrificial chant.)

Bishop:  Yes, that is in John, and also in Timothy – but in Amos we read that He has in fact been seen!  And in Psalms we learn that God has arms and wings; Isaiah says He has a mouth, Genesis says He has legs …

Friar:  Let us talk about sin.  Your ceremony is itself a sin.  But God says that everyone sins, so you are not alone.  You are not alone.

Bishop:  True, that is in Romans, but in First John we read that no one born of God sins.

Friar:  No!  In Ecclesiastes it says that everyone sins!  And furthermore …

Girl:  Stop!  Stop!  Stop. Must I listen to more of this?  (To Pedro) You said that I would be convinced.  Well, I’m not.  Please let me go now. …

(The Indians beckon her with more urgency.)

Friar:  We are trying to save your soul!

Pedro:  You must believe.  Only the Pope can understand these questions.  God only knows the answers, and He tells them to the Pope.

Girl:  Please let me go….

Bishop:  That’s right.  God knows everything, the past and the future.  You have only to call, to call on him, and …

Friar:  But in Genesis it says that God asked Cain where his brother was.  So He didn’t know.

Bishop:  But, in Jeremiah it says that God is everywhere.  Nothing is hidden from His view.

Friar:  Oh, but, in Genesis, the Lord says:  “I will go down and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, and if not, I will know.”  So God did not know until He went down.

Bishop:  But, in the Book of Hebrew, it says that ….

(One of the Indians pulls the Girl by the arm.)

Girl:  That’s enough!  I do not accept your faith, and I never will.  How can something be true and false at the same time?  At the same time?  I think you worship a false god, and I am going to give myself to the True One!  To the True God!  (She runs offstage, along with the Indians.)

Pedro:  No!  Come back!  Come back, Song-of-the-Moon.  Song-of-the-Moon, I love you.

(Slowly, the Girl returns, alone.)

Friar:  Please, sit down.  Let us tell you about our Savior.  He was born of a virgin, and is a descendent of David, the great Hebrew king.

(Some Indians return.)

Bishop:  Well, that is not sure.  His father, Joseph, certainly was, but then Joseph is actually not the father, owing to the virgin birth.  Then Jesus is not a descendent at all.  Instead, …

Pedro:  Well, which version do you believe?

Friar:  It is a mystery.  In Romans it says He was, and in Luke it says He wasn’t….  Of course, I believe both of them.  It is a mystery. The Bible is the inerrant Word of God, and everything in it must be believed.  No errors have ever been found in the Bible.

(The Indians pull on the Girl’s arm.)

Girl:  It’s all mixed up!  How can anyone believe it?

Pedro:  Yes!  How can you believe it yourself?  It is full of contradictions!  What kind of faith is it anyway?

Bishop:  It is a faith of kindness!  You must believe in it.  Take the example of Our Savior.  On the road to Jericho He healed two blind men.  That was a miracle of …

Friar:  But, in the Book of Mark, it says that He healed one blind man.  

Pedro:  Well, which is it, one, or two?

Girl:  If he was so kind and could do miracles, why didn’t he cure all of them?  He must have been very cruel, not to cure them when he had the power.  (She gets up and moves toward the Indians.)

Bishop:  No!  He was certainly not cruel.  Please sit down!  He was the Prince of Peace.  He had good reasons.  They are both true.  You have to believe.  It is a mystery.  They are both true.  He had reasons.

Pedro:  Well, what were they?

Bishop:  I don’t know – but you have to believe that He had them.

(Several Indians lay hold of the Girl.)

Girl:  I don’t believe you!  I think your Bible is full of superstition.  How can you believe it yourself?  It doesn’t make sense!  Why do you believe it?

Friar:  I have believed it since I was a boy.

Girl:  Who taught you?

Friar:  My mother.

Girl:  But it is all lies!

Friar:  You do not understand!  In Proverbs it says that every word of God proves true.

Bishop:  Yes, but in Second Timothy it says that God Himself deceives people, and …

Pedro:  If you cannot convince me, how are you going to convince her?  I think your Bible does say things that are not true.  There is no “mystery.”  (The Friar is horrified.)  It cannot be true.  I don’t believe it!

Girl:  Neither do I.  I will listen to no more!  (She runs off again with her friends.)

Pedro:  Song-of-the-Moon!  Come back!

Friar:  Forget her.

Bishop:  Forget her.  Let her go,

Friar:  It is better to let her go.  Our faith is too good for her anyway.

Pedro:  Your faith is all lies!  You say that things are both true and false at the same time!  You don’t understand it yourself!  It doesn’t make sense!  It’s just superstition!  (Grabs the Friar’s Bible and throws it on the ground.)

Bishop:  Blasphemy!  Heresy!  Do you know what you have said?  

Friar:  Blasphemy!  Heresy!  Do you know what you have said?

Bishop:  You are a heretic! (Friar calls soldiers, who arrest Pedro.)  You don’t know what you’re doing.

Friar:  And the Inca don’t know what they are doing!  A virgin sacrifice!  Ha!  And the girl is not even a virgin!  (laughs)

Pedro:  What are you saying?  What do you know?  What are you saying?

(Millie and Don Diego enter.  She curtsies before the Friar.  He makes the sign of the cross.  She crosses herself and exits, smiling.  The Old Woman wanders in.)

Friar:  When we took Cuzco, our men enjoyed many of the Inca women – and it says in the Bible that it’s permitted.  There was a girl, about ten, I think.  I took her with the others, and afterwards I left her in a swamp.  I think the place was called Sagaduc, or something like that.  That was about five years ago.  About right, I think.  And she looks familiar.

Pedro:  (to the old woman) You there!  Old woman, old woman!  Tell me, tell me, for God’s sake!  How did Song-of-the-Moon come to this village?  Was she found in a swamp?  (The woman nods.)  What was its name?  Was it Sagaduc?  (She nods again.)

Pedro:  Then she is saved!  Now they cannot do it; I must tell them!  But I have to go now!  Let me go!  Let me go! The procession is already starting!  Starting up the mountain!  Let me go, for God’s sake!  Before it’s too late!  I have to tell them!  Let me go!

Friar:  You’re going nowhere.  We know how to deal with heretics.  (The soldiers tighten their grip.)

Bishop:  Your soul is damned!

Pedro:  (To the woman, as the soldiers drag him away) Old woman!  Listen to me; listen to me!  Run up the mountain, quickly!  Tell them that they cannot sacrifice Song-of-the-Moon, tell them, tell them that she is not a virgin!  They cannot do it!  Hurry!  Hurry!  Hurry!

(The old woman gets up and hobbles very slowly across the entire stage, leaning on a cane.  She has still not reached the edge when the curtain comes down.)

End of Scene 1

Act 3, Scene 2.  It is the next morning.  Burned wood and ashes are seen, in a small pile.  Soldiers are all about.  The Girl and the old woman slowly enter.

Woman:  It’s not your fault.  Don’t cry, don’t cry.

Girl:  I’m so ashamed.  I wanted it so.  I have to go away.  To leave this place.

Woman:  Where will you go?

Girl:  I don’t know.  Back to Cuzco.  To Cuzco maybe.  No one will know who I am.

Woman:  You have done nothing wrong!  Stay here.  Stay here.  We will look after you.  You can be happy here, raise a family, and …

Girl:  I can’t!  No one would have me now.  I have to leave.  I’m so ashamed.  What can I do?

Woman:  But think how happy Pedro will be to see you safe.

Girl:  Pedro!  Pedro!  He was the only Spaniard to treat me with kindness.  Find him!  Go and find him!  Tell him that I love him.  Tell him I am waiting here.  Go and find him.  Tell him I am waiting here.   Tell him that I’ll wait for him always.  (The old woman leaves)  Hurry!  Hurry!  Pedro.  Pedro.

(Don Diego and Millie enter)

Millie:  What an awful smell!  They should only do it when the wind is from the East.  Do they think that we are just going to put up with it?  Take them to the next valley, and do it there!  Tell the Governor, Don Diego.  Tell him!

Don Diego:  That’s right, Millie.  One valley does not a mountain make.

Millie:  It makes my eyes all red, and I look awful.  They really should be more considerate.

(The old woman returns.)

Woman:  I don’t see him here.  Come with me.  We will look over there.  (The old woman and Girl leave.)

Millie:  I’ll have to speak to them about it.  Do I still look awful?

(Pizarro, the Friar, and the Bishop enter.)

Don Diego:  No, dear.  You look lovely.  Lovely.

(The Friar goes over to the ash pile and makes the sign of the cross.)

Bishop:  Well, that’s settled.  

Pizarro:  Yes.  It’s a tragedy, but it had to be done.

Bishop:  Indeed.  Everyone hated to do it.  But for the good of the Inca people, and with regret, we had to give ten percent of the spoils to Almagro.  He was threatening to revolt.

Pizarro:  What a tragedy!  Very sad.  After the King made him governor of the land south of Cuzco, he learned that there are no villages there of any importance, and not much gold.  So we had to pacify him.

Bishop:  It is rumored he plans to take Cuzco for himself.

Pizarro:  If he does, he won’t hold it.  Hernando is there, with adequate forces.  We will be victorious, with the help of God.

(Girl runs in, dashes here and there, looking for Pedro.)

Girl:  Pedro!  Pedro!  (She weeps.)  I will look until I find him!  I have looked everywhere!  But I can’t find him.  I will look in every village in the whole world.  I will find him.  I will find him.  Pedro!  Pedro!

(She runs up to the Friar.)

Father Valverde, please!  Where is Pedro?  Where is Pedro?  I have looked everywhere, but I can’t find him.  Tell me where he is.

Friar:  (looking at her with scorn) You will find him soon enough.  When your soul, your heathen soul enters that damnation to which you are destined, you will find him.  Look for him there!  (The Friar leaves.)

Girl:  Pedro, Pedro, Pedro!  I will look until I find him!  I will look everywhere!

(Girl continues to look around.  Then she stops in front of the ashes.  She freezes.)

Girl:  I find him here.

(She sits and weeps.  The others leave.)

Pedro.  Let me touch you.  Let me touch you.  (She touches the ashes, then rubs them on her face.)
Pedro.  I feel your body.  You are touching me.  Can you feel it too?  (She drops some ashes in the breeze.)  Can you feel the breeze?  Do you remember the sunset?  You are close to me.


Pedro.  We are together
Pedro.  You are mine.  In you I felt the tenderness of a young llama, suckling its mother for the first time.
Pedro.  In your eyes I saw I know not what.  Was it love?  Did I see it there?
Pedro.  Did you say it?  Did you say it?  You love me!  You love me!  And I did not answer.  Why did I not answer?  Why?  Why?   Why did I not say to the Friar “Yes, Yes?”  Why did I not say to the Bishop “Yes, Yes?”  “Yes, yes, yes, it is all true, it is all true” even when it isn't?  “Yes, yes, yes.”
Pedro.  That’s what they want.  Not love, which comes from you; not truth, which they do not know.  Just “Yes.”
Pedro.  Did you say you love me?  I did not answer. I did not answer.  
Pedro!  Do you believe in the Spanish heaven?  Do you believe in it now?
Pedro, Pedro!  Can I believe in it too?  
Pedro.  If there really are angels, you are one of them.  If they have feathers, please Pedro, please Pedro, Pedro.  Please fold your feathers around my heart.

End of the opera


Copyright © 2003 D.C. Dilworth