Cowboy Mouth (play)

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Cowboy Mouth
Written bySam Shepard,
Patti Smith
CharactersSlim (Sam Shepard),
Cavale (Patti Smith)
Date premieredApril 29, 1971
Place premieredThe American Place Theatre, New York City
Original languageEnglish

Cowboy Mouth is a 1971 play, written and performed by Sam Shepard (as Slim) and Patti Smith (as Cavale), and directed by Robert Glaudini.[1]


The play is about Slim and Cavale, two aspiring rock stars living in sin together. Cavale kidnapped Slim at gunpoint and held him captive in her motel room for an unspecified amount of time; the two have fallen in love, in spite of the fact that he has a wife and child in Brooklyn. Unable to move, yet at complete unrest, Slim swings from blaming Cavale for the disaster that is his life to begging her to tell him stories about French poets. Cavale is a former mental patient of some kind. She remembers electric shocks and having to wear metal plates around her club foot when she was younger. She also muses about playing the ugly duckling as a child, being forced into the role without even the satisfaction of emerging as a beautiful swan at the end. The two call on an imaginary Lobster Man for sustenance and entertainment. It's a play full of dichotomies, and easily swings from one extreme mindset to another. It theorizes that the American Dream does little more for the individual besides spoil his happiness.


  1. ^ "29 April 1971". Retrieved 2008-03-19.

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