Tuesday, May 8, 2007

on pelle's departure:

(from Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn)


"Yes," I says.

"All right -- bring it out."

"My plan is this," I says. "We can easy find out
if it's Jim in there. Then get up my canoe to-morrow
night, and fetch my raft over from the island. Then
the first dark night that comes steal the key out of the
old man's britches after he goes to bed, and shove off
down the river on the raft with Jim, hiding daytimes
and running nights, the way me and Jim used to do be-
fore. Wouldn't that plan work?"

"WORK? Why, cert'nly it would work, like rats
a-fighting. But it's too blame' simple; there ain't
nothing TO it. What's the good of a plan that ain't no
more trouble than that? It's as mild as goose-milk.
Why, Huck, it wouldn't make no more talk than break-
ing into a soap factory."

I never said nothing, because I warn't expecting noth-
ing different; but I knowed mighty well that whenever
he got HIS plan ready it wouldn't have none of them
objections to it.

And it didn't. He told me what it was, and I see in
a minute it was worth fifteen of mine for style, and
would make Jim just as free a man as mine would, and
maybe get us all killed besides. So I was satisfied, and
said we would waltz in on it. I needn't tell what it
was here, because I knowed it wouldn't stay the way, it
was. I knowed he would be changing it around every
which way as we went along, and heaving in new bull-
inesses wherever he got a chance. And that is what
he done.


AS soon as we reckoned everybody was asleep that
night we went down the lightning-rod, and shut
ourselves up in the lean-to, and got out our pile of
fox-fire, and went to work. We cleared everything
out of the way, about four or five foot along the mid-
dle of the bottom log. Tom said we was right behind
Jim's bed now, and we'd dig in under it, and when we
got through there couldn't nobody in the cabin ever
know there was any hole there, because Jim's counter-
pin hung down most to the ground, and you'd have to
raise it up and look under to see the hole. So we dug
and dug with the case-knives till most midnight; and
then we was dog-tired, and our hands was blistered,
and yet you couldn't see we'd done anything hardly.
At last I says:

"This ain't no thirty-seven year job; this is a
thirty-eight year job, Tom Sawyer."

He never said nothing. But he sighed, and pretty
soon he stopped digging, and then for a good little
while I knowed that he was thinking. Then he says:

"It ain't no use, Huck, it ain't a-going to work. If
we was prisoners it would, because then we'd have as
many years as we wanted, and no hurry; and we
wouldn't get but a few minutes to dig, every day,
while they was changing watches, and so our hands
wouldn't get blistered, and we could keep it up right
along, year in and year out, and do it right, and the
way it ought to be done. But WE can't fool along;
we got to rush; we ain't got no time to spare. If we
was to put in another night this way we'd have to
knock off for a week to let our hands get well --
couldn't touch a case-knife with them sooner."

"Well, then, what we going to do, Tom?"

"I'll tell you. It ain't right, and it ain't moral,  .
and I wouldn't like it to get out; but there ain't only
just the one way: we got to dig him out with the
picks, and LET ON it's case-knives."

No comments: