Winner of Off-Broadway's Vernon Rice Award
As the New York Times outlines: "Mr. Cowen's hero, just about to turn twenty, is discovered dreaming in the backyard (or is it less friendly territory?) and the action of the play is mostly what happens in his head as he surveys his life up to this particular afternoon. Going backward and forward in time with the swiftness of reverie, we see the young man's relationships with his well-meaning but obtuse father, his loving but possessive mother, his compliant but unsentimental girlfriend. The father keeps after him to dress better, make a lot of friends, stick to business, 'be a man.' The mother shuttles between a desire to see him out of the nest and a yen to keep him at home. The girlfriend will be faithful to him while he's in the Army; but, of course, she'll go to the movies with other fellows. Another character is a neighbor boy, in effect the hero's little brother and sometimes in effect, the hero as a kid. And there is a soldier who helps spell out the true location of this friendly summertree." Which is, ultimately, Vietnam, and a battle from which there will be no return. But the life cycle goes on, sometimes happy, sometimes sad, but filled, always, with the bittersweet memories which must become, in the final essence, all that we can truly hold onto.
Winner of Off-Broadway's Vernon Rice Award, which earned unanimous critical praise in its long-run production by the Lincoln Center Repertory Theatre. Concerned with the problems and fears of young people in today's uncertain world, the play is both a joyous expression of the good things in life and a powerful indictment of war and the senseless waste which it can bring. "…beautiful and sensitive; immeasurably moving…" —NY Times. "It is good to come upon a play that makes a virtue of freshness and simplicity and isn't afraid to tug candidly at the heartstrings." —NY Post.