The Invaders, and Other Stories : Part 4, Chapter 3

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1887

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(1828 - 1910) ~ Father of Christian Anarchism : In 1861, during the second of his European tours, Tolstoy met with Proudhon, with whom he exchanged ideas. Inspired by the encounter, Tolstoy returned to Yasnaya Polyana to found thirteen schools that were the first attempt to implement a practical model of libertarian education. (From : Anarchy Archives.)
• "If, in former times, Governments were necessary to defend their people from other people's attacks, now, on the contrary, Governments artificially disturb the peace that exists between the nations, and provoke enmity among them." (From : "Patriotism and Government," by Leo Tolstoy, May 1....)
• "The Government and all those of the upper classes near the Government who live by other people's work, need some means of dominating the workers, and find this means in the control of the army. Defense against foreign enemies is only an excuse. The German Government frightens its subjects about the Russians and the French; the French Government, frightens its people about the Germans; the Russian Government frightens its people about the French and the Germans; and that is the way with all Governments. But neither Germans nor Russians nor Frenchmen desire to fight their neighbors or other people; but, living in peace, they dread war more than anything else in the world." (From : "Letter to a Non-Commissioned Officer," by Leo Tol....)
• "Only by recognizing the land as just such an article of common possession as the sun and air will you be able, without bias and justly, to establish the ownership of land among all men, according to any of the existing projects or according to some new project composed or chosen by you in common." (From : "To the Working People," by Leo Tolstoy, Yasnaya P....)

(? - 1935)
Nathan Haskell Dole (August 31, 1852 – May 9, 1935) was an American editor, translator, and author. He attended Phillips Academy, Andover, and graduated from Harvard University in 1874. He was a writer and journalist in Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. He translated many works of Leo Tolstoy, and books of other Russians; novels of the Spaniard Armando Palacio Valdés (1886–90); a variety of works from the French and Italian. Nathan Haskell Dole was born August 31, 1852, in Chelsea, Massachusetts. He was the second son of his father Reverend Nathan Dole (1811–1855) and mother Caroline (Fletcher) Dole. Dole grew up in the Fletcher homestead, a strict Puritan home, in Norridgewock, Maine, where his grandmother lived and where his mother moved with her two boys after his father died of tuberculosis. Sophie May wrote her Prudy Books in Norridgewock, which probably showed the sort of life Nathan and his older brother Charles Fletcher Dol... (From : Wikipedia.org.)

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Part 4, Chapter 3

The sun was now risen above the forest, and shone brightly on the grass and the winding river. The dew dried away and fell off in drops. Like smoke the last of the morning mist rolled up. Curly clouds made their appearance, but as yet there was no wind. On the other side of the gleaming river stood the rye, bending on its stalks, and the air was fragrant with bright verdure and the flowers. The cuckoo cooed from the forest with echoing voice; and Nester, lying flat on his back, was reckoning up how many years of life lay before him. The larks arose from the rye and the field. The belated hare stood up among the horses and leaped without restraint, and sat down by the copse and pricked up his ears to listen.

Vaska went to sleep, burying his head in the grass; the mares, making wide circuits around him, scattered themselves on the field below. The older ones, neighing, picked out a shining track across the dewy grass, and constantly tried to find some place where they might be undisturbed. They no longer grazed, but only nibbled on the sweet grass-blades. The whole herd was imperceptibly moving in one direction.

And again the old Zhuldiba, stately stepping before the others, showed how far it was possible to go. The young Mushka, who had cast her first foal, constantly hinnying, and lifting her tail, was scolding her violet-colored colt. The young Atlásnaya* , with smooth and shining skin, dropping her head so that her black and silken forelock hid her forehead and eyes, was gamboling in the grass, nipping and tossing and stamping her leg, with its hairy fetlock. One of the older little colts,—he must have been imagining, some kind of game,—lifting, for the twenty-sixth time, his rather short and tangled tail, like a plume, gamboled around his dam, who calmly picked at the herbage, having evidently had time to sum up her son's character, and only occasionally stopping to look askance at him out of her big black eye.

One of these same young colts,—black as a coal, with a large head with a marvelous top-knot rising above his ears, and his tail still inclining to the side on which he had laid in his mother's belly—pricking up his ears, and opening his stupid eyes, as he stood motionless in his place, looked steadily at the colt jumping and dancing, not at all understanding why he did it, whether out of jealousy or indignation.

Some suckle, butting with their noses; others, for some unknown reason, notwithstanding their mothers' invitation, move along in a short, awkward trot, in a diametrically opposite direction, as though seeking something, and then, no one knows why, stop short and hinny in a desperately penetrating voice. Some lie on their sides in a row; some take lessons in grazing; some try to scratch themselves with their hind legs behind the ear.

Two mares, still with young, go off by themselves, and slowly moving their legs continue to graze. Evidently their condition is respected by the others, and none of the young colts ventures to go near or disturb them. If any saucy young steed takes it into his head to approach too near to them, then merely a motion of* an ear or tail is sufficient to show him all the impropriety of his behavior.

The yearlings and the young fillies pretend to be full-grown and dignified, and rarely indulge in pranks, or join their gay companions. They ceremoniously nibble at the blades of grass, bending their swan-like, short-shorn necks, and, as though they also were blessed with tails, switch their little brushes. Just like the big horses, some of them lie down, roll over, and scratch each others' backs.

A very jolly band consists of the two-year-old and the three-year-old mares who have never foaled. They almost all wander off by themselves, and make a specially jolly virgin throng. Among them is heard a great tramping and stamping, hinnying and whinnying. They gather together, lay their heads over each others' shoulders, snuff the air, leap; and sometimes, lifting the tail like an oriflamme, proudly and coquettishly, in a half-trot, half-gallop, caracole in front of their companions.

Conspicuous for beauty and sprightly dashing ways, among all this young throng, was the wanton bay mare. Whatever she set on foot, the others also did; wherever she went, there in her track followed also the whole throng of beauties.

The wanton was in a specially playful frame of mind this morning. The spirit of mischief was in her, just as it sometimes comes upon men. Even at the river-side, playing her pranks upon the old gelding, she had galloped along in the water, pretending that something had scared her, snorting, and then dashed off at full speed across the field; so that Vaska was constrained to gallop after her, and after the others who were at her heels. Then, after grazing a little while, she began t* o roll, then to tease the old mares, by dashing in front of them. Then she separated a suckling colt from its dam, and began to chase after it, pretending that she wanted to bite it. The mother was frightened, and ceased to graze; the little colt squealed in piteous tones. But the wanton young mare did not touch it, but only scared it, and made a spectacle for her comrades, who looked with sympathy on her antics.

Then she set out to turn the head of the roan horse, which a muzhík, far away on the other side of the river, was driving with a plow in the rye-field. She stood proudly, somewhat on one side, lifting her head high, shook herself, and neighed in a sweet, significant, and alluring voice.

'Tis the time when the rail-bird, running from place to place among the thick reeds, passionately calls his mate; when also the cuckoo and the quail sing of love; and the flowers send to each other, on the breeze, their aromatic dust.

"And I am young and kind and strong," said the jolly wanton's neighing, "and till now it has not been given to me to experience the sweetness of this feeling, never yet to feel it; and no lover, no, not one, has yet come to woo me."

And the significant neighing rang with youthful melancholy over lowland and field, and it came to the ears of the roan horse far away. He pricked up his ears, and stopped. The muzhík kicked him with his wooden shoe; but the roan was bewitched by the silver sound of the distant neighing, and whinnied in reply. The muzhík grew angry, twitched him with the reins, and again kicked him in the belly with his bast shoe, so that he did not have a chance to complete all that he had to say in his neighing, but was forced to go o* n his way. And the roan horse felt a sweet sadness in his heart; and the sounds from the far-off rye-field, of that unfinished and passionate neigh, and the angry voice of the muzhík, long echoed in the ears of the herd.

If through one sound of her voice the roan horse could become so captivated as to forget his duty, what would have become of him if he had had full view of the beautiful wanton, as she stood pricking up her ears, inflating her nostrils, breathing in the air, and filled with longing, while her young and beauteous body trembled as she called to him?

But the wanton did not long ponder over her novel sensations. When the voice of the roan was still, she whinnied scornfully, and, sinking her head, began to paw the ground; and then she trotted off to wake up and tease the piebald gelding. The piebald gelding was a long-suffering butt for the amusement of this happy young wanton. She made him suffer more than men did. But in neither case did he give way to wrath. He was indispensable to men, but why should these young horses torment him?

(Source: Published by Thomas Y. Crowell & Co., New York, 13 Astor Place, 1887.)

From : Gutenberg.org

Chronology

November 30, 1886 :
Part 4, Chapter 3 -- Publication.

June 09, 2021 18:12:41 :
Part 4, Chapter 3 -- Added to https://www.RevoltLib.com.

June 09, 2021 18:55:59 :
Part 4, Chapter 3 -- Last Updated on https://www.RevoltLib.com.

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