Translations of short stories from the subcontinent

Saturday, March 13, 2010

A miracle (करामात by Saadat Hasan Manto)

Many shops and homes had been looted and burned in the riots. 
Police had begun to conduct raids to recover looted goods and arrest looters.
People were abandoning contraband and hiding away even their legitimate property under the cover of darkness.

One man was worried about two large sacks of sugar grabbed in haste.
One night he dragged the sacks to the neighbourhood well and somehow managed to heave the first one inside.
Tired and struggling with the second sack, he lost his footing and was carried away with it into the well.

The loud splash roused his neighbours. Ropes were lowered into the well.
Able-bodied young men descended and the man was soon pulled out onto dry ground.
But it was too late. He was dead in a few hours.

The next morning when water was drawn from the well, it was found to be as sweet as honey.
That same night the man's grave was covered with lamps.

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