That Lie

By Jeremy Moodey


A dramatic monologue in which the actor tries to shake off the effects of a damaging (but unspecified) lie that was told to him in the past. This monologue is short but quite demanding on the actor.

Bible reference

Exodus 20:16 - "You shall not give false testimony against your neighbour". Lies do not just affect us; they can have a crippling affect on other people.


Two - the actor and someone who walks on with 'That Lie' printed on his t-shirt.


(The Actor walks on stage and sits on a stool, stage centre.)
Today is the day! Yup. Today is definitely the day! I feel it in my bones. Today, it is definitely going to happen!
I've put up with it for too long. I mean - thirty years! Since I was a knee-high to an orange box! Ha! It's almost funny when you think about it. That is - if it wasn't so pathetic. No, from today, it's out of my life for good. Bye bye, au revoir, arrivederci.
Hang on, doesn't 'arrivederci' mean 'until we meet again'? Anyway, whatever....
I mean, I've waited too long of course. Should have done this years ago. Should have taken the bull by the horns. Grasped the boil and lanced the nettle. That's what I should have done. Still, better late than never. "Seize the hour, seize the day!", that's what they say.
But how am I going to do it? I mean, after thirty years you can't just.....switch it off. It's like an old friend in a way. It's just always there, like an old cardigan. Always there.
C'mon stupid, it's simple really. All you have to do is just say "You are out of my life". That's all. Nothing more. Doesn't take a flippin' rocket scientist to realise that. "You are out of my life". Six piffling words. That's all. Easy, really.
(Rehearsing) "You are out of my life".
"You are out of my life"
"You are out of my life"
"You are out of my life"
Oh well, who cares? Let's just do it.
(Stands up and shouts)
(Takes in a deep breath. Pause)
It's gone! It''s definitely gone! I can almost....smell the freedom! It's gone completely! I am totally free of it! What a wonderful feeling! (Looking heavenwards and shouting) If there's anyone at home up there....I love you!
(Closes eyes and relaxes)
(A second Actor with 'THAT LIE' on his shirt walks on at the back of the stage and moves slowly to stage left of the Actor)
(1st Actor not yet realising) Now, at last, I can just get on with my life. That's what I'm going to do. "Live life to the full". Oh yes indeedy! My Life Part II begins here and now!
(Notices 'THAT LIE' to his right.)
What are you doing here? (Begins to panic) You're not supposed to be.....I mean I've just......You shouldn't be here, you shouldn't be in my life....I've just told you to.....Why can't you just....I don't want you in my life!
('THAT LIE' walks slowly behind stool)
That happens to me every time! I think positively, I refuse to believe it, I "speak against" it. And what does that achieve? Diddly squat, that's what. Diddly, flippin' squat. "It's all in your mind", that's what my analyst said. "It's all in your mind". So why is it still in my life, eh? Why? What am I supposed to do?
(Sits down in despair)
Hang on! Perhaps it's meant to be in my life? Perhaps I'm not supposed to get rid of it after all? Perhaps.....perhaps it's actually true?
(Pause - a slow dawn of realisation. 'THAT LIE' puts his hand on the Actor's shoulder)
Of course! That's it! That's why I haven't been able to shake it off! That's why it's still in my life! That's why it.....that's why it keeps coming back! It's not a lie at all, it's the truth. (Almost inaudibly) It's the truth!
© Jeremy Moodey 2003, all rights reserved
This drama may be performed free of charge, on the condition that copies are not sold for profit in any medium, nor any entrance fee charged. In exchange for free performance, the author would appreciate being notified of when and for what purpose the play is performed.
Contact Jeremy at  j_moodey<at>