Theater: Petit Guignol

SWEET BIRD OF YOUTH

by TENNESSEE WILLIAMS

Oscar Wilde said it was impossible for a sensitive person to read of the death of Little Nell without laughing. Tennes see Williams provokes the same irreverence with his cloying presentation of little Heavenly's fate in Sweet Bird of Youth. Heavenly has had her "youth" cut out, leaving her "to rattle like a dried-up vine where the gulf wind blows." Bluntly put, she underwent a hysterectomy at age 15 after getting the clap from her lover, Superstud Chance Wayne, just before he skipped town to pursue a...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!