Perhaps once in every author's life, he has an idea of pure genius. While I am no genius
author, I hope this work at least reflects an idea of genius. From the moment that the idea of this play came into my head, it has consumed me until I had no choice but to present it to the rest of you.
This play is the second completed play (of at least three, there is one in between this play
and The Flight) in the Sydney Matthias series. The play exists on two time levels. That is the fundamental clue to solving the riddle posed by the title. Why is a play about two sets of lovers called Even
After All These Years? If one bothers to read through to Scene Twenty-Two, the answer is provided. Despite the fact that the two timelines are separated by over 2850 years, they still love and have many of the same things
happen to them.
This has been one of my most enjoyable plays to write. Where it took me was a beautiful
place where two innocent and intelligent people can love without sinning, can make their world a better place while also enriching their own lives. This is a play about four people, two couples, separated by time but not a lot of
space, whose love reflects a godliness in each of them.
If everyone has at least one fairy tale to give to the world, this is mine. I must thank
many people for their help to me in making this play possible. I am part Jewish myself, but not enough for me to know the language or culture. For that I have been helped by a few websites as well as a friend of mine, Mark
Kaplan, who is Jewish himself.
I have also been helped concerning the chronology and location of the events of this play by
several friends whose knowledge about the Bible exceeds my own. For all of these friends, as well as for Sarah at USC Hillel who gave me some help in Hebrew, I give my sincerest thanks. This play is fundamentally about love and
the constancy of human nature despite the long passage of time. A future play that I hope to write in three parts will make this more explicit. I hope that this is an enjoyable play to read or watch.
I have no doubt that there is much here that people will analyze to death, especially
concerning the ferocity about land in this play. There will be some who complain that I am pro-Israeli, but let them complain. This is a play about success, and as such, it could not be a play about narrow- minded
Palestinians with bloodthirsty thoughts of revenge. It had to be about a Jew and an American who love each other and who do not hate those who hate them, even if it is necessary to stand by and watch one's enemies get
slaughtered. There are two ways in this world, love and hate. Hate and you end up like the Palestinians and Nabal. Love and you end up like Joshua and Ishi and like Sydney and Hadassah.
As a writer, all I can do is paint a story and hope that it excites (such as the events of
Mount Carmel as well as the fight in Ein Helweh), entertains (such as the events where Sydney and Hadassah make out on Mount Carmel only to have someone ask them a history question), and enlightens (such as the historical, cultural, and
biblical knowledge present in this play). I have done the best I could to make this a wonderful play. May you do the best you can in enjoying it yourself.
Scene: It is the ruins of Samaria, the capital of the biblical kingdom of Israel. It is a dry Israeli
day, with few clouds in the sky, and two archeologists are digging on the site of the IvoryPalace, which was the palace of the dynasty of Omri. After some digging, the two archeologists find a stone tablet. They are dressed
plainly, in baggy and comfortable clothes, to keep the desert sun at bay. Both of them are westerners, British.
Archeologist #1: Come here, Harry.
Archeologist #2: Yes, old chap? What do you have there?
Archeologist #1: I have found some kind of stone tablet underneath all of this rubble.
Archeologist #2: Can you read it at all?
Archeologist #1: Not right now, could you brush it off and let us see if we can make out the Hebrew characters.
Archeologist #2: [brushing it off]: How about that?
Archeologist #1: That is much better, thanks.
Archeologist #2: This looks like some kind of court tablet.
Archeologist #1: Yes, like the court records of King Ahab. It appears that the tablet records some kind
of petition from a subject in the Kingdom of Israel concerning a family farm in Abel Meholah.
Archeologist #2: This looks interesting. What should we do with it?
Archeologist #1: Well, let us translate it as best as we are able and publish it.
Archeologist #2: This could cause a firestorm.
Archeologist #1: Yes, it names Ahab as well as the words Abel Meholah and Carmel.
Archeologist #2: What could Carmel have to do with anything?
Archeologist #1: I do not know. Perhaps after translation we could make more sense of it.
Archeologist #2: Is the scribe named?
Archeologist #1: Not that I can see offhand, there appears to be some lacunae.
Archeologist #2: What a shame, but that is par for the course.
Archeologist #1: Yes, it is, but this is the most interesting thing we have found yet.
Archeologist #2: You know how those yankees say publish or perish?
Archeologist #1: Yes?
Archeologist #2: Well, at least we won't perish. This could get us some major publicity and fund our work
for a long time.
Archeologist #1: Quite true. Let's get going. We have a lot of work to do.
Copyright © 2005 Nathan Albright