Monday, August 04, 2008

The Last Straw

The pain is excruciating. The muscles in his back ache with exhaustion, his flanks are sore with blisters, and his legs tremble as though about to give way. Bent under the weight of the sacks he cannot lift his hooves, but shuffles forward as though his feet were chained together.

Lord! will this suffering never end?

Yesterday, what a chance! An apprentice was loading him, the new one, and he almost overdid it, almost broke his back. He quivered in anticipation, feeling load pile on load, knowing death was a few handfuls away, craving its release. One more straw would have done it!

Then the foreman came and stopped the boy, cuffed him on the ear, told him to be more careful.

And to think he was so close.

6 comments:

J. Alfred Prufrock said...

Do camels have hooves?

J.A.P.

Preeti said...

thanks. that hit home :(

CrazyDiamond said...

bizarro black beauty?

km said...

@JAP: Only camels that behoove.

Falstaff said...

JAP: Frankly, I don't give a (Hoover) dam.

//why not? they're ungulates.

preeti: You're welcome. Though you do realize that's ship of the desert with a single s right?

crazydiamond: errr...I don't think so.

Kris Bass said...

First time on this blog. I like it. I have added you on my roll!