Four apple-trees are climbing up the grassy slope : a roped party of trees in the Pyrenees contemplated by a famished dog, as famished as the droves of canids which, at night, in the streets of Katmandu, attack the left alone and fearful tourist. In the meadow, below the nearly neighbouring house, the lady of the Oustalot, a full ninety years old, cuts the dense grass which is discolouring. Her daughter moves about on the crest, dressed in blue and in woebegone nonchalance. Formerly, the saying is, a student who had come from the plain, had accompanied her back up to her door while talking to her about the Sotiates and the Saracens who had ventured as far as Notre-Dame de Sabart. The girl with the blue apron now accepts sweet nothings from the peasants of the land who susurrate loose things to her, themselves attired (they don’t know !) with a Saracen patronym.
The apple-trees produce the apple, the fruit of the first discord since it was already found in the garden of Eden, while, in the shadow of the apple-trees of land parcel 20, are zigzagging, out of little mossy walls, from time to time a few serpents drunk with knowledge, the kind which makes the bare-footed peasant turn pale. The blacksmith drops his eye-lid down on definitive thoughts and returns with slow and measured steps to the bells of his herd which razes the grass of the village common so often frequented by the sheep of my great-uncle Felip, alias l’ Arièjo, thus called in the happy times where he took his seasonal human ewes to participate in the grape-harvest of the Low-Land, down there in the region of Lézignan-Corbières, to bring back some barrel of light wine which had to be baptized to help it pass the winter.
Claude d’Esplas (Le Parcellaire)
All rights reserved
Translation : Dagmar Coward Kuschke (Tübingen)