Shakespeare, Hamlet and Something Like a Prosthetic Limb!
Shakespeare, Hamlet and a Prosthetic Limb!
This is a sketch that Shakespeare might have written if he had thought of it first but he didn’t. So, I’ve taken the liberty. I wrote this a long time ago for my sister-in-law’s twenty-fifth Wedding Anniversary and it was performed by my Husband and another one of my many brothers’-in-law at a party. Jenny, the sister-in-law in question worked in a centre which supplied prosthetic limbs.
Hamlet coming suddenly on Ophelia at her prayers
Hamlet: (Looking down at his nether regions)
But soft no more, ‘tis the fair Ophelia!
Nymph in thy orisons, be all my sins remembered?
Ophelia: (Looking at his nether regions also)
Ah, good My Lord, long hast it been since
I have seen thee thus so proud.
I thought thee forever afflicted with the droop.
Hast thou been to Friar Lawrence for a potion?
Or to the apothecary, for a lotion?
She stands up
Nay, nay, my fine and fair Ophelia,
I’ve been to Friar Walsam, for a balsam.
Oh, good My Lord, didst it cause you
pain to rub it in?
In truth, Ophelia, the tears didst prick my eyes,
But oh, the trick, to see the wick arise
And catch me quick and completely by surprise.
Oh, my sweet prince, glad should you be to have it, twere it half that size!
(OPHELIA POINTS TO JENNY SITTING AT FRONT)
But see, good Lord, we have a traveller from time.
She’s come to thee, Prince Hamlet, to measure thee in thy prime.
For shame, Ophelia, I cannot share it thus.
Why, ‘tis let loose but recent, from the truss.
Oh, sweet prince, just one quick feel, not rough.
Nay, nay, fair lady, just one, to such a one,
Is ne’er enough!
If thou didst love me, my Lord Hamlet,
Thou would’st give her one quick feel!
For alack and alas, tomorrow, she’s back at
Forsooth, Ophelia, is this the woman I have heard about?
Jennifer from the limb centre, they say casts a clout?
Prithee, my Lord, she is the very same.
Then out of my way, I’ve heard she’s more than game!
Sire, step not one step, or, by the Lord Harry,
‘tis you I’ll fight!
Zounds, oft’ have I thought twere you,
had a little touch of Harry in the night.
Calm, calm ye now, my lady, Ophelia.
Is this not the woman to do me great service
without which, I am bereft, bereft and undone?
You know what I mean, she could get me a better one!
Oh Sire, My Lord, my love, if only she could.
But, pray tell me, how would we manage?
She says they’re made of wood!
Yes, yes, Ophelia, ‘tis pity enough to cut down
a great oak.
Oh, come now, Sire, surely, you joke!
A great oak is verily too high a price,
When the mere’st splinter will more than suffice!
Anyways, ‘tis no matter, My Lord Hamlet,
She says, she will not furnish new equipment
Unless she, herself, gets a share in your improvement.
Of what is this she speaks, my fair Ophelia?
Her demand, sweet prince, is that you must give her one
If not, My Lord, we will ourselves be both undone!
Ophelia, prithee explain, for I am confused.
Oh, for goodness sake try to keep up, Sire,
Methinks she’s here to improve your desire.
Desire for what, my fair Ophelia?
Zounds, if memory has fled there is not much chance
Or, indeed, much point in improving your droopy lance.
Help me, fair Ophelia, for I wish to understand.
Put another way, my dearest, my dove
You must pretend to offer her your love!
(HAMLET FALLS ON HIS KNEES IN FRONT OF JENNY)
Oh, excellent wretch, perdition catch my soul
but I do love thee, and when I love thee not,
Chaos is come again!
(HAMLET RISES AND KISSES JENNY’S HAND)
Pray, excuse me, my Lady Jennifer, for ‘pon my soul
I have partaken too much mead.
(HAMLET CROSSES LEGS AND LOOKS DESPERATE)
And now to passeth wee wee is my most urgent
And pressing need!
Good My Lord, leave us now and you miss your chance.
Is this not what we planned for?
To renew your ailing lance?
‘Pon my soul, now I am in most dreadful turmoil,
For I must decide…
To pee, or, not to pee? That is the question!