Epilogue / Wheels of a Dream (Reprise) Lyrics. From Musical "Ragtime"

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Epilogue / Wheels of a Dream (Reprise) Lyrics


by . From Ragtime.


CHORUS
Ooohh!

(We hear a slow rag begin. THE LITTLE BOY appears next to a small manual projector.)

THE LITTLE BOY
The era of Ragtime had run out, as if history were no more than a tune on a player piano. But we did not know that then.

(He turns the projector as a slow parade begins - a ghostly, silhouetted march of time: people of the past, people of the
future.)

YOUNGER BROTHER
After Coalhouse Walker's death, Younger Brother drove south to Mexico, where he joined the great peasant revolutionary,
Emiliano Zapata.

(YOUNGER BROTHER rejoins the parade, and now, one by one, others step forth.)

ALL
La la la la la

EMMA GOLDMAN
The signs of the coming World War were everywhere. The anarchist Emma Goldman was arrested again, of course, but this time
she would be deported, as well.

ALL
Ooh ooh...

BOOKER T. WASHINGTON
Booker T. Washington's Tuskegee Institute became, in time, the capital of black America. When he died, flags were flown at
half-mast. President and Mrs. Wilson attended his funeral.

ALL
La la la la la.

GRANDFATHER
Grandfather resided now in a cemetery. At last, peace and quiet!

EVELYN NESBIT
The passionate and beautiful Evelyn Nesbit would lose her looks and fall into obscurity. Whee!

HOUDINI
Harry Houdini was hanging upside down high over Times Square when the Archduke Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in Sarajevo.

THE LITTLE BOY
Warn the Duke!

HOUDINI
A little boy's words suddenly rang clear to the great illusionist. It was the one genuine mystical experience of his life.
But it was too late. The world was already at war.

FATHER
When the Lusitania was torpedoed by a U-boat off the Southwest coast of Ireland, twelve hundred men, women and children lost
their lives, and among them, Father.

MOTHER
Mother wore black for a year. At the end of this time, Tateh proposed and she accepted.

MOTHER
She adored him.

THE LITTLE BOY
They moved to California.

THE LITTLE GIRL
They were now a family.

THE LITTLE BOY
They felt blessed.

MOTHER
Coalhouse!

(A very small black child runs into her arms. He is COALHOUSE WALKER III. The children play.)

TATEH
One afternoon, watching his children play, Tateh had an idea for a movie: a bunch of children, white, black Christian, Jew,
rich, poor--all kinds-- a gang, a crazy gang getting into trouble, getting out of trouble, but together despite their
differences.
He was sure it would make a wonderful movie--a dream of what this country could be.
He would be first in line to see it.

(TATEH moves to MOTHER.

(COALHOUSE and SARAH appear upstage, on opposite sides of the stage.)

COALHOUSE
I see his face.

SARAH
I hear his heartbeat.

BOTH
I look in those eyes;
How wise they seem.

(TATEH picks up little COALHOUSE.)

MOTHER, TATEH, COALHOUSE, SARAH & ALL (offstage)
Well, when he is old enough
I will show him America.
And he will ride...
Our son will ride...
On the wheels of a dream.

(COALHOUSE and SARAH watch as the FAMILY walks off into the future.)

[Thanks to Yehuda Alexander for lyrics]




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