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whomed with a neigh, hut and word girl Pelnt room of th
trade with a person unknown to him. sumed appalling heaps of food. After
The girl had listened silently both dinner we slept a bit, - about two to the news of Peter and also to my hours, — and when again I came into business talk; but now when I said I the front room of the house, I saw the would go to Okuneff, without any word girl Pelageia there, sitting with a little she went from the hut and soon old man who was dressed in the black returned with a neighbor woman, to garb of a monk. He was wiry, thin, and whom she explained what had to be quite white-haired; but he had the done while she was away from the home strong determined face, and a trementhat day. 'Well, my swallow, well, my dous force was felt both in his voice and birdie, I will do so,' the neighbor agreed. in his eyes — though his manner was
When the compact was made, and quite humble and his speech was very not before, did the young girl calmly low. The girl must have been telling ask of me if she might go in my sledge him about Maria's husband; for when to Okuneff's.
I entered the little old man rose and "There is plenty of room, you see, greeted me, and began to ask intently and I will take but small space,' she in detail what I had heard from the said. “And if Peter is so ill, I must go doctors about Peter's hopeless case. at once to a very old man who is living When I had explained, he asked as now in the house of your friend, the well all about the lazaret — just where Barin Okuneff. So please to make for it was in Petrograd, how large, how me this grace.
many rooms it had, and just where was Of course I agreed, and we started Peter's bed. He inquired as though he away. We traveled about twenty himself were intending to go and see versts, and this girl at my side was the sick man there. When all this insilent still as any fish could possibly be. formation he had, he thanked me and I learned her name, Pelageia — but not rose and went to his room. another word from her could I draw Then I asked my friend Okuneff who out along the road. In the concen was this little holy man? He answered trated way she sat, as if she thought of me that now for some time the old something.
fellow had lived within his house, and What it was I did not know — and that he was glad to have him there – as I looked at her I guessed that not so quiet and good he always was, so even she herself knew her thoughts. little trouble did he make. He stayed So at last we came to Okuneff's estate. most of the time alone in his room, and Exceedingly glad to see me there, at his meals were the water and the rye once in his stentorian voice he cried: - bread — only rarely a dish of sauer
'Juvenal Vassilievich arrived! Now kraut with sunflower oil, which he took make for us a big fish-pie! Be quick as as a feast. The strange healing-power possible! Don't forget to serve the he sometimes had; many peasants had nice zakooski, too!'
been cured by him. So much for his And then followed the further orders case. With Okuneff I soon forgot about which he shouted from his room down him now, and all evening long we talked to the kitchen far below.
of the war — of prices, how they rose and rose; and of new laws by the government, each one more stupid than
the last — or not so stupid, rather done That was a splendid feast we had. by the German influence at court, to With the appetites of heroes we con- bring all our trade and industries down.
So, after this good cheerful talk, which back to Petrograd. But when I arrived most Russians like so well, finally we with my linen and laces I found the went to bed.
girl Maria still there; and to my enorThe next day when leaving Okuneff's mously great chagrin, my mother house, I saw the old man of the night would barely look at this stuff! Inbefore. He said, in the low and quiet stead, she began to tell me now of a voice, ‘I attended to the trouble of most strange adventure which they Peter, and I received news that now have had while I was gone. A little old all will go well.'
man, in the garb of a monk or of a I smiled to myself. For how could pilgrim, came to them. Though all the such a simple old man travel six hun- doors were closed, she told, without dred versts in a night to the lazaret trouble or sound he entered silently where Peter lay? I went into my sledge into the room where they were sitting; with Pelageia, and we started back to and after greeting Maria, he said, 'I Bor. Though she had heard what the have been to your Peter and talked old man said, she took it quite as a with him, and have found that now he matter of course. She was rather com- will soon be quite well.' municative now, and explained to me Then quickly and strangely he went that it would be hard to buy the linen away.... While my mother told this and laces in Bor; for the women did tale, I saw the girl Maria looking innot like to sell except in the cases ex- tently at my face, as if she were asking, ceedingly rare. Too much toil their ‘And what do you know?' But I told stuff had cost. But still she would try them nothing yet of the man that I to persuade them to sell to me some had seen at Okuneff's house. In the thing, if only a little. Very calmly on great interest and surprise I began to she talked. Long ago some merchants question both of them, and soon they had bought the lace in Bor, she said, were disagreeing as to many small debut could not sell it in the big towns, tails — just how he looked, just what because the ladies there preferred to he said. But the general story was the buy the laces foreign-made. “For to same. The next morning, they told me, them it was the shocking taste to wear they went to see Peter. anything made in Russia!' she said. “And really, Junechka, the boy was So now her friends and neighbors in much better!' my excited mother deBor were quite indignant that their clared, 'He breathed quite well withfine work should be refused for the bad out oxygen now — but still was too lace made with machines in Germany! weak to say anything more than that Pelageia spoke of those ladies in towns, he had seen an old man there — and most heartily despising them all! ‘No that now all would be well with him!' self-respecting Barina,' she said, 'would wear such trash from Germany!
But about the little old man she did not say a single word. And when I With all my curiosity stirred I went asked if she thought he would help, the the next day to the lazaret — and there girl replied, 'It is not a good thing to I found Peter so much improved that speak of the Starzy (Holy Man). he could talk quite easily and listen
In Bor, through her aid, I bought to what I had to tell. I did not speak what I could. Of all the money which of the little old man; I only told how I I had I spared only enough for the had gone to his village and seen his ticket — third class — and so I went wife's young sister there. With the
stuff had crare. Top in the ca
calm interest of the peasant, Peter lis- soul streaming from him like the light. tened to my talk. At last I asked him So he came and looked at me with a how it was that he was feeling better good smile. "Good day, Peter," he now—and then he said very quietly:- said. “You will soon be much better.
‘One came to me two nights ago. I have heard that you are ill, so I have
'Who came to you? What do you gone and inquired for you, and learned mean?' I asked. 'No visitors can come you will recover soon. You must pray here in the night. Perhaps you were to the God for recovery." I replied to sleeping and had a dream.'
him, “For what should I pray — when 'No, I was awake,' he replied. “But I cannot tell which is life, which is I was lying in the state where you can death? I am lying between.” Then he not say, “Here is life — there is death” said to me, “You must pray to the God - because you can feel yourself just at once for the life! You are still a between. And this was very hard for young man and you have a young wife, me. I did not know what I should do. and soon there will be a child for you, Should I ask for the death and pray for too! A fine strong boy he is going to my soul, or should I be begging the be! What reason have you to think of God for my life and thinking of my the death? You are going to pray to family? I grew quite tired with such live, my boy!” Then he told to me thoughts, and all the fighting in my how I should pray, and I repeated it, chest. But I cannot say that I was word by word. While I was talking I asleep, for I saw all about me quite heard the good Sister, who sat sewing clearly and well, and I heard how the still at my side, say very softly, “Now Sister beside my bed was saying the poor man is saying a burial prayer “Look, now, how he plays with his for himself.” I looked around to smile hands, always drawing the blanket up at her then — and when I looked back, to his chin. That is the sure sign of the old man was gone. death.” So I lay and I listened. So 'Then I fell asleep and slept all of the quiet I grew that now it was quite the night. The next day the Sister looked same to me, whether I lived or whether at me and said, “You were the funny I died. She dropped her needle. I man last night! Quickly you turned opened my eyes and watched how she and began to speak with somebody who stooped and tried to find it on the was not here! And then you began to floor. “Will she find it," I asked, pray to the God!” I said to the Sister, "before I die?” She found it soon, and “But did you not see the old man who drew her chair a little closer to my bed came and spoke to me?” She laughed
- and now she was sewing quietly and took hold of my hand and said, here. “Now,” I thought, “in this long "Well, well, if there was, or there was war, she is so used to see men die. not — do not let it trouble you! I am What is she sewing?" I watched her glad that you are better now!” Then still.
she went and brought the doctor here, “Then something pulled upon my and when he came he was much surthoughts, and I turned my face toward prised. Barely could he believe his own the door. And I saw, at first dimly, eyes that I was not a dead man to-day. then quite clear, how there had entered And he said to me, “Peter — you are a little old man in the dark robe of the bull! The strong and lusty bull you Holy Church, his face quite bright, a must be!” So said the learned doctor. happy one, yet quiet too with the deep But look at me, Barin, if I am the bull.' strength of joy and peace within his Peter drew off his blanket and opened
Sister besonder how here the blankenheim at the olden I fell asleepy the Sist
at hermself." I laying a burilia “Now
saniet. I grew ih lay and the sure sign up
mad. For in such a lether to stay or
Only! this to the doctors here:nios
his shirt. And he was like a skeleton how she was begging the old man there very closely clad in skin!
to pray that Peter should not die, and 'The Sister told to the doctor then,' how the old man on the next day told he continued quietly, 'how I spoke that he had looked into the matter and with someone who was not here — that now all would be well. At this, though of course he was here, as I have Peter grew most solemnly silent; and said. She told to the doctor, too, how when I had finished, he remarked, I prayed. Then he asked, “How was 'So — so it was. Pelageia went to his fever last night?” It was under the the Starzy there. She is the good kind normal, the Sister replied; and she told clever girl — she knew to whom to go how close I was to the death. Now the for help; and now I know who it was doctor understood all, and he said, that came. I will recover surely now.' “Just so it was. The poor fellow was Then he plucked at my arm; and mad. For in such a crisis, when the when I bent down, he whispered:soul does not know whether to stay or ‘Only, Barin - please – do not depart, often the man will grow quite speak of this to the doctors here! For mad, and see what is not in the room.” they are the quite learned men! They So I listened, and I thought, “Now of can make a man die with one little pill! course it must be so — for he is the And if they knew what we are talking, very learned man. How many dead for me it would soon be dangerously men have slipped through his hands! bad! For they think I am mad! They
The great experience he has had! He do not know! They live in such cities must be right! So I am mad!” But — so large, so large, and filled with so soon again I fell asleep, and when I many learned books — that they canawoke I grew better still. And now I not grasp our very plain and simple do not think I am mad — and I feel little village ways! So let us just slip that soon I will return to my home.' away from them!'
He grew tired then and could talk no Ten days later, with his wife, Peter more. Quietly closing his eyes he said, went calmly back to his home — as
'Tell me, please, Barin, about my though nothing strange had happened home — all that you saw while you at all. We heard no more from them were there. Was the horse in the for a month - and then the girl stable? Or has my wife been forced to Pelageia, almost as silent as before, sell him in this damned war?'
came to our lodgings with quite a huge 'Yes, the horse was there,' I replied. bag of linen and laces which she and ‘But now I will tell you something Maria had made for my mother, as a else.' And I told how the girl Pelageia gift. And she told us that Maria had went with me to Okuneff's house, and just given birth to a son.
BY SARAH N. CLEGHORN
(THE coming in of the Family Order of society, and the actual practice, among such large groups of the Race, of the Discipline of Happiness both in the bringing up of children and in the treatment of social disturbers, seem to have stolen upon us like a thief in the night. Events have so crowded each other, since the apathetic decade following the L. C. W.', up to the dramatic revival of Nomadry in 1963, that it has become ever more and more difficult for historians to trace cause and effect. Especially is this noticeable in the recent History of Earth, published last year by the Interracial press at Cairo.
This magazine, six months ago, opened a contest for the best Interpretation of these changes. Hundreds of persons presented their opinions. We now publish four of the most interesting of these Interpretations; and every reader of the magazine is entitled to one vote upon the most convincing of them. — From a note by the Editors, under date of JULY 1995]
THE ICE AGE BUBBLE
een in so long? For
Earth had, and more sharply, toother of course I thin
I DON'T think it's because some of my If I felt thus romantically even in my ancestors were Single Taxers that I've young days, what must I feel now, always had a sort of filial feeling about when with one cool touch of her hand Earth — little green pellet that she is she has straightened out the sticky, among the stars! Of course everybody sobbing mess our human relations nowadays thinks of Earth as alive. were in, and had been in so long? For But I believe I realized before other of course I think the one thing that people did, and more sharply, too, that quieted and reasonablized us was the Earth has an animal existence of her Ice Age Bubble of the thirties. own, has emotions of her own, — un- Nobody remembers better than I do conscious, of course, — and her own the beginnings of the Bubble. So far instincts and habits. I've always had back as 1925 I'd been thrilled by an a dramatic feeling about Earth, an obscure little item, tucked away someimpulse to think of her as a buxom where in the interior of one of those young thing engaged in a sort of huge cumbersome newspapers we used Marathon morris-dance, with all of us, to have then: dinosaurs of which we her raft of tiny children, clinging to her think with wonder now, as we tuck shoulders, and all surrounded by a long away the morning's newsleaf into our twirling veil of atmosphere.
1 Last Christian War.