OXENYOKE 4'3m0f Salvation, works, rest: Take my yoke upon you 

(Both oxen wear small head dresses with short horns; bend over 
at the waist, hands out of site, moo and bleat offstage)

OLD -- (enters, led by farmer, remains near exit) Moo. Moo. 

NEW -- (enters, led by farmer, stands next to Old) Moo. Moo. 
What did I do?

(farmer exits)

OLD -- Moo. You didn't do anything, kid. They're putting you to 

NEW -- Moo. Work? What's work?

OLD -- Look, kid, for oxen like us, there's only two things 
you're good for: you either work or you die.

NEW -- Die?! Are they going to kill us?!

OLD -- Relax, kid. You're perfectly safe. I made sure of that.

NEW -- You did?

OLD -- Yeah, when they came into the pasture this morning 
looking for an oxen to sacrifice, I pushed you to the far side 
of the pasture so they would choose another ox.

NEW -- That was you? 

OLD -- Yeah.

NEW -- I thought that was just somebody being rude.

OLD -- No. That was me.

NEW -- So, that other ox they led out of the pasture this 
morning.... he ended up...

OLD -- ....Dead.

NEW -- Wow! I guess I'm lucky to be alive.

OLD -- Luck's got nothing to do with it, kid. I hand picked you 

NEW -- You chose me?

OLD -- Yeah.

NEW -- For what?

OLD -- For work. 

NEW -- Work? What's work? All I've done so far my whole life is 
eat grass.

OLD -- Yes, but now that you're full grown, it time for you to 
learn how to work.

NEW -- How do I learn? I have no idea what I'm doing.

OLD -- I'll teach you as we go. The way they do it here is to 
team you up with an experience ox like me. You just watch me and 
do what I do.

NEW -- This makes me nervous. They're not going to kill me if I 
make a mistake, are they?

OLD -- Relax, kid. Learning is the easiest part. See, the first 
thing they do is they put this wooden yoke on us. (looks 
offstage as farmer enter carrying yoke) Oh, there it is now.

NEW -- Oh, oh! What do I do?

OLD -- You don't do nothing, kid. You just hold still and let 
him connect us together with the wooden yoke. Hold still now.

(farmer drops yoke over necks of Old and New)

There. That wasn't so bad was it?

NEW -- Why did they connect us together?

OLD -- This way we work as a team. Our job is to pull a plow or 
a wagon. Today it looks like we're hitched up to a plow. When he 
tells us to go, you just walk in step with me. Okay?

NEW -- Yeah, sure. I sure hope you know what...

FARMER -- (hooks ropes or thongs to yoke) Get up! (slaps Old
with noisey strap or slapstick) Heyah!

OLD -- Okay, let's go. (grunts)

(New and Old move legs out of sync, go nowhere)

Let me do all the pulling, kid. (grunts) You just keep up. Okay?

NEW -- Okay, but even without doing any of the pulling I feel so 
awkward. I have no idea what I'm do.... (stumbles)

FARMER -- Heyah! (slaps Old with noisey strap or slapstick) 

NEW -- Oh, dear! Why is he whipping you? I'm the one who made a 

OLD -- That's the way the training goes, kid. The farmer doesn't 
want to discourage the new ox. Stick with it, kid. You're 

NEW -- But I'm not really doing anything. Are you sure I'm doing 

OLD -- You're doing fine, kid. Try to keep in step with me. 
Left, right, left, right....

(New gets in sync with Old)

That's it kid! You're doing great! Left, right, left, right. Now 
you're getting it.

NEW -- Shouldn't I do some of the pulling?

OLD -- No, kid. The farmer doesn't expect the new ox to do 
anything strenuous when you're learning. Once you learn how to 
work as a team, I'll let you pull some of the load. But until 
then, just relax and enjoy the stroll.

NEW -- Thanks. I think I'm getting the hang of this. I kind of 
like this team work stuff.

OLD -- It sure beats ending up dead, doesn't it?

NEW -- Don't remind me. By the way, thanks for choosing me to be 
your team mate. 

OLD -- Think nothing of it, kid. I chose you because you looked 
like a team player.

NEW -- I sure am much obliged.

OLD -- Okay, kid, we're coming to the end of the row. We're 
about to make a turn. Follow my lead and try to keep in step 
with me, okay?

NEW -- Okay.

FARMER -- Gee. (whip) Gee. (whip)

OLD -- Here we go.

(They turn in unison, move toward exit, Old is closest to 

NEW -- (smiles) Hey, we did it! Nothing to it, heh!

OLD -- Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle 
and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls. For
my yoke is easy and my burden is light.

�2013 Bob Snook. Conditions for use:
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