Fall 1985 • Vol. VII No. 4 Fiction |

The Ragpicker’s Boy

The ragpicker's son was a lean, quick boy, tall and blue eyed and proud. His hands were slender and strong veined, holding the reins, and my brother Jim thought he must be the luckiest kid in the world because it was his job, his privilege, to drive the wagon. He sat on the high seat, lapping up sunlight, alone, while his father, a grizzled, dark-faced, shambling man, fussed and muttered over the backyard trash. They had two horses, a black and an ivory white one, pulling together in ancient harness which was cobbled up with wire where the brass was gone. Probably the boy had a saddle at home and rode the white horse anytime he liked. That's what Jim said. Or, he hunted rabbits; he'd have a dog, too, of course. And, probably, the saddle had some silver on it—not a lot—but there'd be some bits of silver and some on the bridle, too, because that's how we thought then it always was when a boy owned a horse, two horses, all his own. We had only bicycles and cement. The b

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Pounding the Dog

By Louise Erdrich

The ragpicker's son was a lean, quick boy, tall and blue eyed and proud. His hands were slender and strong veined, holding the reins, and my brother Jim thought he […]

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