MISFIT DOC: The Cellars: A One-Act Play

Art: “Swarm by Tessa Farmer


Setting: Star Zone, an abandoned nightclub in Wilmington, California. Late 80s. Three characters stand on stage equidistant from each other. Long strands of twinkling blue and green lights hang from above.


Character One:

the delirium

of blotter kippers froth

& lustrate  wildly   blindly

(bedabble shale & wallow in the mist)

festal brides & clamlike fairies


Character Two:

ziggurats of slabber

& air-built cellars

unfurl the sparge & kyle

of siccative welkins

bedew savanna


Character Three:


the froth of bedabbled fairies!

the blotted kippers!

the wallowing savannas!


Character One:

a welkin in the hole

on a kyle in a kipper

slabbers the ziggurats

fane the shale willows, dear boys


Character Two:

bedabble the unfurled

& unfold

the froth of sparge

alit on a morning dew

w/ the babies

& the hugger muggers

& the landlubbers

(blotted & bedewed)

w/ sparkling pallium

delirium    bewildered


Character Three:

air-built & saucy welkins

unfurl in the froth

of littoral bugbears

the blotted cellars & roscid

crimkum crankum of fane fairies

clamlike in the cellar

(a whisper to mother or father)


Character One:

 aloft & aloof

w/ the frosty lustrates of savannas

in georgia

(our festal minds)



Character Two:

she hugs the mugs on the ziggurat of pickwickian cellars

she is bedewed on a landlubber

a littoral rillet of a circumfluous sparge

kyle! hey kyle, sorry I didn’t email you back! how ya been?





Character Three:

she is roscid (repeat)

air-built (complete)

bedabbled (indeed)




behold the pickwickian cellars!




Maw Shein Win is a poet, editor, and educator who lives and teaches in the Bay Area. Her poetry chapbooks are Ruins of a glittering palace (SPA/Commonwealth Projects) and Score and Bone (Nomadic Press). Invisible Gifts: Poems was published by Manic D Press in 2018. She was a 2019 Visiting Scholar in the Department of English at UC Berkeley. Win is the first poet laureate of El Cerrito, California (2016 - 2018), and her poetry collection Storage Unit for the Spirit House will be published by Omnidawn in 2020. mawsheinwin.com

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