Several years ago I was part of an Easter play; I got to play Judas. Not much of a start to an acting career but I played the bad guy as best as I could. In the final scene I was already off stage and standing behind the tomb with Jesus getting ready for the Resurrection. My view was Jesus leaving a dark tomb going into a bright stage; that is when this short piece got birthed. I had to image Judas dead as Jesus came to get the keys to hell. (This is part of a play I have been writing.)
Judas- five minutes after
(kneeling, as the lights slowly come up)
The heat, why is it so dark?
Where am I?
There is light, coming toward me, man it is hot, that light is a man?
He is coming straight toward me. Its Jesus, he is coming, Jesus, here I am.
(turning as if following motion) He is going straight to that door. Why didn’t he stop, why is it so hot?
(standing up, proudly)
I am Judas Iscariot; the most important of Jesus’ twelve disciples. Jesus had me keep the moneybox.
There was never was enough in it to keep me satisfied.
That smell. That’s the perfume Mary poured on Jesus.
(growling) She would be remembered but still I am the most important, it was worth a year’s wage. Instead of selling it and giving me the money,
(lower voice) I had to go talk to the High Priest. Oh, that smell, it needs to go away.
The heat, that smell, where did Jesus go? What is crawling in my leg?
(just grabbing leg) It feels like a worm, crawling inside my leg. (now hitting his leg)
That money, I could have, I mean we could have used it for the poor.
(lower voice) The priest gave me more than a year’s wage,
(crying) why didn’t they take it back. He was innocent.
They should have listened to me; I am one of the Twelve; I have authority!
(turning quickly) Who is laughing at me? What do you mean no authority here, why I cast you demons out. Stop laughing, why is it so hot!
You should have seen me leading the army to get Jesus, I was the man; everyone listened to me.
( perplexed voice) His eyes, He knew, He was never angry. Love in His eyes.
That parade into Jerusalem should have been for me, I am important you know, one of the Twelve. Stop laughing; the heat.
The kiss, everyone was watching, watching me.
(grabbing stomach) That worm is crawling, when will this thing die. What do you mean never? (looking around)
I saw the miracles; I heard His words.
(lower, talking to self) I was the one; the old prophets had talked about me. Jesus knew all the time; He never said a word, just love.
I had the bread and wine of Passover. I am ok; nothing wrong with me,
(looking around) you sound like children singing songs. Mothers were always bringing them, we were busy, we had no time for them. He should have never told me to leave them alone.
I was the one who started the fight at dinner. That was pure genius; they stopped wondering who was going to betray Jesus. It was so easy they were so caught up in that kingdom stuff. I had the moneybox, and I would have been the leader. Stop laughing.
(looking around, holding his head)
I should have been sitting on that donkey, not leading it. That fragrance; I smelled it for whole ride into Jerusalem. He knew, even then.
“Not me”, I said. Made it sound just like everyone else asking that question. That piece of bread he gave me, never did finish it. The voice telling me to leave, yelling at me that it was time to go. How did Jesus know? I was so careful, no one saw me go to the High Priest.
Water, that is what I need, water. Just like He washed my feet with. He knew, those eyes, He never told. Just a tear. They all thought I was going to help the poor. I could do as I pleased; I had the money. More than most of them had ever seen, thirty pieces of silver.
His touch as He washed my feet, He could have stopped me. All He ever did was love me. He trusted me with the money. I threw it at them; they should have let Him go. He never did anything wrong.
(screams) Stop laughing. When will it get cool, cool like the water on my feet.(slumps to ground)
(looking up) The door is opening, Jesus. Oh that smell: what is rattling? Sounds like keys, we’re going now, right! Jesus, Jesus where are you going? (sobbing)
(standing up proudly) I am Judas Iscariot.
(lights go out)The most important of the twelve disciples.