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A Response to Wellman’s Antigone, Thanks for Nothing

“To dramatize is to rise against the self.” Mac Wellman, from Wellman’s Antigone

So I choose to make something of nothing. So I choose, quite literally, bending over backwards to form what lies outside of language into a universal alphabet. A deliciously warm and slippery bowl of alphabet soup to be, at the very least, swallowed. Or even less, seen. To dramatize. To theatricalize. To offer something (something, something, something) up to those who ask questions. And to those who don’t. To give. And to receive. And to return.

Why? Because theatre is more true than life. Because of my creative impulses. Because of “the call”. Because I want to. Because it pumps my nads. Because how else do we talk about the things lying outside of language ? We get it, we get it, we get it. Because there’s nothing more weird or more wonderful

Than humanity.

But really, why? It’s tough. It’s really tough. And sometimes, “Why Bother” struts in, no rides in, on a black horse in a black cloak with greasy black facial hair and he almost gets me. Sly fuck. I dramatize anyway. I will make my theatre in spite of you. And maybe it’s not always noble. Maybe it’s not even good art or high art, but it’s better than riding off alone with my own doubts about myself and about the world.

How can I rise against myself?

What Wellman’s Antigone taught me…

Yes, this is tough. Even worse than tough it’s futile its trifle it’s meaningless. Hollow earth, hollow time. “We feel nothing human. We feel cold and alone. Antigone looks at us. We look at Antigone. Nothing moves us. Nothing moves Antigone. This is the cat’s cradle. We feel nothing because we are no longer what’s called “human””(Wellman, 67).

But thank God Wellman put all that into a words, into a play, into alphabet soup. Because not only is all that “nothing” now something. It’s something beautiful. It’s something theatrical. It’s a force. A force that fills what is empty. And what more could a mere mortal ask for?

Thank you, Mac Wellman for the gift of nothing.




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