Gayle Madwin (queerbychoice) wrote,
Gayle Madwin

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Quotes from "Cloud Nine" by Caryl Churchill

MARTIN (to his wife, Victoria): You take the job, you go to Manchester. You turn it down, you stay in London. People are making decisions like this every day of the week. It needn't be for more than a year. You get long vacations. Our relationship might well stand the strain of that, and if it doesn't we're better out of it. I don't want to put any pressure on you. I'd just like to know so we can sell the house. I think we're moving into an entirely different way of life if you go to Manchester because it won't end there. We could keep the house as security for Tommy but he might as well get used to the fact that life nowadays is insecure. You should ask your mother what she thinks and then do the opposite. I could just take that room in Barbara's house, and then we could babysit for each other. You think that means I want to fuck Barbara. I don't. Well, I do, but I won't. And even if I did, what's a fuck between friends? What are we meant to do it with, strangers? Whatever you want to do, I'll be delighted. If you could just let me know what it is I'm to be delighted about. Don't cry again, Vicky, I'm not the sort of man who makes women cry. . . . Do you think you're well enough to do this job? You don't have to do it. No one's going to think any the less of you if you stay here with me. There's no point being so liberated you make yourself cry all the time. You stay and we'll get everything sorted out. What is it about sex, when we talk while it's happening I get to feel like it's a driving lesson. Left, right, a little faster, carry on, slow down - . . . So I lost my erection last night not because I'm not prepared to talk, it's just that taking in technical information is a different part of the brain and also I don't like to feel that you do it better to yourself. I have read the Hite report. I do know that women have to learn to get their pleasure despite our clumsy attempts at expressing undying devotion and ecstasy, and that what we spent our adolescence thinking was an animal urge we had to suppress is in fact a fine art we have to acquire. I'm not like whatever percentage of American men have become impotent as a direct result of women's liberation, which I am totally in favour of, more I sometimes think than you are yourself. Nor am I one of your villains who sticks it in, bangs away, and falls asleep. My one aim is to give you pleasure. My one aim is to give you rolling orgasms like I do other women. So why the hell don't you have them? My analysis for what it's worth is that despite all my efforts you still feel dominated by me. I in fact think it's very sad that you don't feel able to take that job. It makes me feel very guilty. I don't want you to do it just because I encourage you to do it. But don't you think you'd feel better if you did take the job? You're the one who's talked about freedom. You're the one who's experimenting with bisexuality, and I don't stop you, I think women have something to give each other. You seem to need the mutual support. You find me too overwhelming. So follow it through, go away, leave me and Tommy alone for a bit, we can manage perfectly well without you. I'm not putting any pressure on you but I don't think you're being a whole person. God knows I do everything I can to make you stand on your own two feet. Just be yourself. You don't seem to realize how insulting it is to me that you can't get yourself together. . . . Did you know if you put cocaine on your prick you can keep it up all night? The only thing is of course it goes numb so you don't feel anything. But you would, that's the main thing. I just want to make you happy. . . . Yes, I'd like to go home and do some work. I'm writing a novel about women from the women's point of view.


(Edward and Gerry, the classic gay male couple imitating heterosexuality)

EDWARD: I've got some fish for dinner. I thought I'd make a cheese sauce.
GERRY: I won't be in.
EDWARD: Where are you going?
GERRY: For a start I'm going to a sauna [to fuck a random stranger]. Then I'll see.
EDWARD: All right. What time will you be back? We'll eat then.
GERRY: You're getting like a wife.
EDWARD: I don't mind that.
GERRY: Why don't I do the cooking sometime?
EDWARD: You can if you like. You're just not so good at it that's all. Do it tonight.
GERRY: I won't be in tonight.
EDWARD: Do it tomorrow. If we can't eat it we can always go to a restaurant.
GERRY: Stop it.
EDWARD: Stop what?
GERRY: Just be yourself.
EDWARD: I don't know what you mean. Everyone's always tried to stop me being feminine and now you are too.
GERRY: You're putting it on.
EDWARD: I like doing the cooking. I like being fucked. You do like me like this really.
GERRY: I'm bored, Eddy.
EDWARD: Go to the sauna.
GERRY: And you'll stay home and wait up for me.
EDWARD: No, I'll go to bed and read a book.
GERRY: Or knit. You could knit me a pair of socks.
EDWARD: I might knit. I like knitting.
GERRY: I don't mind if you knit. I don't want to be married.
GERRY: Well I'm divorcing you.
EDWARD: I wouldn't want to keep a man who wants his freedom.
GERRY: Eddy, do stop playing the injured wife, it's not funny.
EDWARD: I'm not playing. It's true.
GERRY: I'm not the husband so you can't be the wife.
EDWARD: I'll always be here, Gerry, if you want to come back. I know you men like to go off by yourselves. I don't think I could love deeply more than once. But I don't think I can face life on my own so don't leave it too long or it may be too late.
GERRY: What are you trying to turn me into?
EDWARD: A monster, darling, which is what you are.
GERRY: I'll collect my stuff from the flat in the morning.
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