This monologue is extracted from the play Easter by August Strindberg (1901)
Eleanor (aged 16) has been away in an asylum, and has returned to her family unexpectedly. Her family are disgraced because their father has been sent to prison because of bad debts, and embezzling money.
Enter with flower – strangely – sit…
My name’s Eleanora, and I’m the daughter of the house. I’m dead as far as other people are concerned. You see, I did something very wicked. I embezzled some trustee funds – but you see, my father was blamed for it and put in prison, and that’s unforgiveable…I don’t count time or place. I’m everywhere and eternal. I’m in the prison with Father…and in the classroom with my brother…Ah…my father’s suffering –
They’re being unkind to him. Listen to the telephone-wires singing. I’m inquisitive. I always have to know everything, or I get upset. Shall I tell you about the flowers? Do you know when I was ill, they made me take a drug made out of henbane, which has the power of turning your eyes into a magnifying-glass. Anyhow, I can see much further than anyone else – I can even see the stars in broad daylight. Now I’ll tell you about this flower on the table. It’s a daffodil. I saw it as I passed the flower shop just now, and I wanted it for a present for my brother Elis, but when I tried to get in, I found the door was locked. I simply had to have that flower! So I took out my keys and tried them – and would you believe it? My latch-key fitted, so I went in, and I left a krona on the counter, and I took the flower and went. Nobody could possibly believe that I’d want to steal anything! Like father, like daughter! But it’s Easter, and we must suffer.