“Abhay and the Banana”
Excerpted from the full-length play,
For My Silent Sisters
By Tara Meddaugh
Genre: DRAMA/TEEN/YOUNG ADULT
Cast: MALE (FEMALE)
Setting: Mumbai, India
Age range: 12-20
About the play, For My Silent Sisters:
Set in the countries of Cambodia, Romania, India and the United States, four teenagers struggle to escape the dark underworld of child sex trafficking. Jorani has been sold to a brothel in payment for her sister’s gambling debt, and her Buddhist upbringing is put to the test. Marta seeks a new life as a translator in England, but after finding her “employer” has vastly different plans for her, she must risk her own life to save another. After a fight with her father, Claire meets an older man whom she starts to fall for—but whose manipulation over her brings on severe consequences. Abhay, living on the streets of Mumbai, finds employment at a brothel and must decide if the “good life” is worth the atrocities. While living in four different parts of the world, their lives are intertwined, and their support of each other binds this connection. Told through poignant monologues and scenes, this drama shines light on the real horrors that occur all over the world, and the hope and faith that allow children to survive.
About the monologue:
Abhay has lived on the harsh streets of Mumbai before being “taken in” by a brothel owner who is grooming Abhay to enter the field. Abhay is a teenager now, and it has been years since he had any kind of home or regular meals at all. Yet he's conflicted as he learns he has moved from one horrific circumstance to another. Abhay relives, to the audience, the moment he loses his mother and home, and what that means to him and his baby sister.
I’ve had two people I loved. And two people who’ve died. I never met my dad, if you can call him that. Some man that got my mom pregnant. A different guy got her pregnant again two years later and gave me my sister. I never met him either but I owe him—‘cause he gave me Purnima.
My mom was always warm, right up until the end. Always kissing my forehead, stroking my cheek with her hand, calling me “baby,” when she was just a kid herself. She had me when she was 14. She wore dark purple nail polish. It almost looked black. I liked the smell of it, like strawberry. Her bracelets would jingle when she hugged me and she told me I gave her the best hugs in the world. I believe it too because she was surrounded by some real bad people.
She never even got to turn 20. She died of tuberculosis when she was 18. My baby sister was two. We got no family, no friends that would stick around and raise two bastard kids. Only took a day before some crazy men took over the hut she’d somehow managed to get for us. They said it was theirs. But I knew they were thieves, but I’m four so what can I do. One guy throws me a banana as he kicks me out. I ask him for another one. I got a baby sister, I tell him. He sorta laughs... Click for the entire monologue, "Abhay and the Banana."
To purchase the play, For My Silent Sisters, from which this monologue is extracted, click below: