Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Brick, let me finish! – I know, believe


Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

See more monologues from Tennessee Williams


Age Range
Act I
Time & Place
A bedroom on the Pollitt plantation, Mississippi
Time Period
Show Type

Monologue Context

Maggie is married to Brick Pollitt, a former athlete and sports announcer who has

Monologue Text

Brick, let me finish! – I know, believe me I know, that it was only Skipper that harboured even an unconscious desire for anything not perfectly pure between you two! – Now let me skip a little. You married me early that summer we graduated out of Ole Miss, and we were happy, weren’t we, we were blissful, yes, hit heaven together ev’ry time that we loved! But that fall you an’ Skipper turned down wonderful offers of jobs in order to keep on bein’ football heroes – pro-football heroes. You organized the Dixie Stars that fall, so you could keep on bein’ teammates forever! But somethin’ was not right with it! – Me included! – between you. Skipper began hittin’ the bottle…you got a spinal injury – couldn’t play the Thanksgivin’ game in Chicago, watched it on TV from a traction bed in Toledo. I joined Skipper. The Dixie Stars lost because poor Skipper was drunk. We drank together that night all night in the bar of the Blackstone and when cold day was comin’ up over the Lake an’ we were comin’ out drunk to take a dizzy look at it, I said, ‘SKIPPER! STOP LOVIN’ MY HUSBAND OR TELL HIM HE’S GOT TO LET YOU ADMIT IT TO HIM!’ – one way or another!

HE SLAPPED ME HARD ON THE MOUTH! – then turned and ran without stopping once, I am sure, all the way back into his room at the Blackstone… -When I came to his room that night, with a little scratch like a shy little mouse at his door, he made that pitiful, ineffectual little attempt to prove that what I had said wasn’t true…

In this way, I destroyed him, by telling him truth that he and his world which he was born and raised in, yours and his world, had told him could not be told? -From then on Skipper was nothing at all but a receptacle for liquor and drugs… -Who shot cock robin? I with my – merciful arrow!

Sorry – I’m not tryin’ to whitewash my behaviour, Christ, no! Brick, I’m not good. I don’t know why people have to pretend to be good, nobody’s good. The rich or the well-to-do can afford to respect moral patterns, conventional moral patterns, but I could never afford to, yeah, but – I’m honest! Give me credit for just that, will you please? Born poor, raised poor, expect to die poor unless I manage to get us something out of what Big Daddy leaves when he dies of cancer! But Brick?! – Skipper is dead! I’m alive! Maggie the cat is alive! I am alive, alive! I am alive!

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