Tuesday, March 17, 2009

appointment in samarra

went to keif's for something specific i plan to t'ief, but got there and saw his post about his favourite piece of fiction. it also happens to be my favourite, and all this time i thought i posted it here long ago, so i could find it easy when i want it. came back here and searched, but to no avail. so i tracked it down in the middle of one of my documents, to put it somewhere i can find it (yay blog search capability). don't think anybody knows for sure, but somerset maugham's been credited with this piece, appointment in samarra.
The speaker is death:
There was a merchant in Baghdad who sent his servant to market to buy provisions and in a little while the servant came back, white and trembling, and said, master, just now when I was in the marketplace I was jostled by a woman in the crowd and when I turned I saw it was death that jostled me. She looked at me and made a threatening gesture, now lend me your horse and I will ride away from this city and avoid my fate. I will go to Samarra and there death will not find me. The merchant lent him his horse, and the servant mounted it, and he dug his spurs in its flanks and as fast as the horse could gallop he went. Then the merchant went down to the marketplace and he saw me standing in the crowd and he came to me and said, why did you make a threatening gesture to my servant when you saw him this morning? That was not a threatening gesture, I said, it was only a start of surprise. I was astonished to see him in Baghdad, for I had an appointment with him tonight in Samarra.

walk good.


Post a Comment

<< Home