Vol. 8 No. 2 1941 - page 100

100
PARTISAN REVIEW
away, and his apparatus is standing right here before us.
It
con–
sists, as you see, of three parts. In the course of time, each of these
parts has come to be designated by certain folk names, as it were.
The lower one is called the 'bed,' the upper one the 'draughtsman,'
and the middle one hanging up there is called the 'harrow'." "The
harrow?" asked the explorer. He had not been listening with
undivided attention; the sun was much too tightly ensnared in the
shadowless valley; it was hard to concentrate one's thoughts. The
officer seemed to him all the more admirable, therefore, as he
explained his cause so zealously, iJJ. his tight dress uniform, heavy
withepaulets and hung with gold braid. Moreover, as he spoke he
was busying himself with a screwdriver, tightening a screw here
and there. The soldier seemed to be in a state of mind similar to
that of the explorer. He had tied the condemned man's chain around
both his wrists and was now leaning with one hand on his gun, his
head drooping from the nape of his neck, indifferent to everything.
The explorer was not surprised by this, for the officer was speaking
French and certainly neither the soldier nor the condemned man
understood French. It was, therefore, all the more striking that
the condemned man should nevertheless have made an effort to
follow the explanations of the officer. With a kind of sleepy per·
severance he continued to direct his glance where the officer hap–
pened to be pointing. When the latter was now interrupted by a
question from the explorer, he, too, looked, as did the officer, at
the explorer.
"Yes, harrow,'' said the officer. "It's a suitable name. The
needles are arranged as in a harrow and the whole thing is worked
like a harrow, although always on the same spot, and much more
artistically. You'll understand it right away, anyhow. The con·
demned man is laid here on the bed. - But I shall first of all
describe the apparatus, and after that, I'll get the operation itself
under way. You will then be able to follow it more easily. Also,
there is a cog-wheel in the draughtsman which has gotten too worn
down; it makes a creaking noise when it runs so that a person can
hardly understand .what is being said. Spare parts are hard to get
here, too, unfortunately.- Well, then, as I said, here's the bed. It
is entirely covered with a layer of cotton, the purpose of which you
will learn later on. The condemned man is laid on this cotton, belly
down and naked, of course; these straps for the hands, these for
the
80...,90,91,92,93,94,95,96,97,98,99 101,102,103,104,105,106,107,108,109,110,...160
Powered by FlippingBook