A Note from the Interventionist
Two households, both alike in dignity
In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,
From ancient grudge break to new mutiny
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.
Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. As best you can, forget everything you know about Romeo and Juliet. Toss out the romanticized Zeffirelli, the electrified Luhrmann, and any other personal experiences you may have had with this play. Instead think of America, who’s bloody, war torn history is as old as its age. Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. Think of a time where brother fought against brother and neighbor fought against neighbor. It was an age of hatred and war. The battles were gruesome, intimate affairs of savagery. It created wounds that still break open today. Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.
And then, the war was over. But the hatred remained. In the southern states in the late 1800’s just below the Mason Dixon line, the blood of the North and South mixed together in the soil of family farms. The post-war confusion created a tinderbox of hate--the continuance of their parents’ rage. The generation that fought passed along their boiling blood to their children and loyalty shifted from country to family. Cocooned in Appalachia, away from government and law, these families turned primal. The battles that the war began continued in the streets. God was praised and proven through the venomous serpents their holy men handled. And the music of the banjo and fiddle permeated through the smoky, sticky, moss-covered woods that make up the Blue Ridge Mountains. Welcome to Verona, North Carolina.