Tom Sawyer – Part Fifty-six

Before you read the text, read the following comprehension questions.

1. Where did the boys run to for shelter after their tent had blown away?

2. What could be seen on the other side of the river due to the lightening?

3. What had nearly killed the boys?

4. How did the boys change their physical appearance in order to become Indians?

5. Why were Tom and Joe nervous about making peace?

Now read the text and answer the questions.

They could not talk. The old sail they had as a tent flapped furiously. The storm got stronger and stronger, and the sail tore loose and got carried away by the wind.

The boys took each others’ hands and ran to the shelter of a great oak tree next to the river-bank.

Now the storm was at its highest. Lightning lit up the skies, everything below stood out in clean and shadowless distinctness: the bending trees, the river, white with foam, the dim outlines of the hills on the other side of the river and the steady sheets of rain.

Every so often some giant tree fell crashing to the ground in the forest. The thunder continued in earsplitting explosive bursts. The storm finally finished in one huge effort that seemed likely to tear the island to pieces, burn it up, drown it to the tree-tops, blow it away, and deafen every creature in it, all at the same time.

It was a wild night for homeless young heads to be out in.

But at last the battle was done, and the forces retired with weaker and weaker noises and peace took over.

The boys went back to camp, amazed at what they had seen and heard. They found there was still something to be thankful for, because the great sycamore tree that had used as shelter for their beds had fallen and crashed to the ground. Luckily, they were not under it when the catastrophe happened.

Everything in the camp was completely wet, including the camp-fire. They had not prepared well for rain.

They were not happy. They were soaking wet and cold. Nevertheless, they didn’t complain. They discovered that the fire had burned a long way under the large log it had been built against and some of it was dry, so they patiently added more dry wood and made the fire burn again.

Then they added more wood until they had a big roaring fire, and this made them happy again.

They dried their boiled ham and had a big meal, and after that they sat by the fire and talked about their midnight adventure until morning. They had to because there was not a dry spot anywhere to sleep on.

As the sun began to rise on the boys, they became sleepy, and they went out to the side of the river to lay down.

They soon got very hot from the sun and started to prepare breakfast. Diccionario online

After the meal they felt tired and a little homesick once more. Tom saw the signs, and started to cheer up the pirates as well as he could.

But they cared nothing for marbles, or circus, or swimming, or
anything. He reminded them of the secret, and this cheered them up a little.

While it lasted, he got them interested in a new idea. This was to stop being pirates, for a while, and be Indians for a change.

They were attracted by this idea, so it was not long before they were undressed and completely covered with black mud.

They were all Indian chiefs, of course, and they ran through the forest to attack an English settlement.

Eventually, they separated into three hostile tribes, and ambushed one another with dreadful war noises and screams, killing and scalping each other by thousands. It was a violet and bloody day. Consequently, it was an extremely satisfactory one.

They assembled in camp toward supper-time, hungry and happy, but now they had a problem. Hostile Indians could not break the bread of hospitality together without first making peace, and this was a simple impossibility without smoking a pipe of peace. There was no other process that they had ever heard of.

Two of the savages almost wished they had remained pirates. However, there was no other way. So with such show of cheerfulness as they could find they called for the pipe and took their turn as it went past.

They were suddenly pleased that they had become Indians because they discovered that they could now smoke a little without having to go and hunt for a lost knife. They did not get sick enough to be seriously uncomfortable.

They continued to practice carefully, after dinner, with some success, and so they spent a wonderful evening.

They were prouder and happier with their new smoking skill than they would have been in the scalping and murdering of all the Indians.

... to be continued!

* The text has been adapted from the Adventures of Tom Sawyer
by Mark Twain


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Tom Sawyer – Part Fifty-seven

Before you read the text, read the following comprehension questions.
 

1. Where were Becky Thatcher and the boys’ other school friends when they were thinking and talking about the the last time they had seen Tom, Joe and Huck?

2. How did the people in the village know that the funeral was about to start?

3. Did a lot of people attend the funeral?

4. How were the boys’ relatives dressed and where did they sit?

5. Why hadn’t the villagers seen the boys during the funeral service?
   

Now read the text and answer the questions.
 
People were not happy in the little town that same tranquil Saturday afternoon. The Harpers, and Aunt Polly's family, were sad and crying, thinking that the boys were dead.

There was an unusual silence in the village, although it was normally very quiet anyway. The villagers did the things they would normally do and talked very little, but they sighed often.

The Saturday holiday seemed difficult for the children. They didn’t enjoy playing sports, and gradually gave them up.

In the afternoon Becky Thatcher found herself sadly walking around the empty schoolyard, and feeling very sad and miserable. But she found nothing there to comfort her. She thought to herself, "Oh, if I only had a brass door handle again! But I haven't got anything now to remember Tom by." And she started to cry a little.

She stopped crying and said to herself, "Oh, I wish I could have the conversation again. I would say different things. But he's gone now and I'll never, never, never see him anymore."

This thought started her crying again and she walked away, with tears rolling down her cheeks. Then, a large group of boys and girls, who were friends of Tom's and Joe's, walked by, and stood looking over the fence
and talking quietly about how Tom did this and that the last time they saw him, and how Joe said this and that. Each speaker pointed out the exact place where the boys stood at the time, and then added something like "and I was standing like this, just as I am now. And I was as close to him as I am to you. And he smiled like this. And I felt strange and I didn’t know why. But I do now!"

Then there was an argument about who had seen the dead boys last, and many said that they had. Eventually, when they decided who had last seen the boys alive, and spoken with them, this made everyone else jealous.

One boy, trying to claim some fame, said, "Well, Tom Sawyer hit me once."
But that was nothing special. Tom had hit many other boys.

Eventually, the group walked away, still talking about memories of the lost heroes.

The next morning, the church bell began to ring to call the people of the village to attend the boys’ funeral.

Slowly, people began to arrive. There was a sadness in the air and the villagers talked in low voices outside about the sad event. But inside the church there was silence. Only the noise of ladies’ dresses could be heard as women went to their seats. No one could remember when the little church had been so full before. There was a silent pause, and then
Aunt Polly entered, followed by Sid and Mary, and then by the Harper family, all dressed in black, and the whole congregation, the old priest as well, stood up respectfully until they were all seated at the front of the church. Diccionario online

There was another long silence, broken occasionally by the sound of soft crying. The priest raised his hands and prayed. An emotional hymn was sung, followed by a reading of, "I am the Resurrection and the Life."

As the funeral service continued, the priest spoke about the wonderful manners and lovely personalities of the lost boys. And what a bright future they might have had. He felt bad that he had only seen the bad side of the poor boys in the past.

The priest told many emotional stories in the lives of the boys. Stories that showed their sweet generous characters. He explained how bad the boys’ behavour had seemed at the time, deserving of punishment, but behind their actions were good intentions.

The congregation became more and more emotional until at last everyone in the church started to cry uncontrollably. Even the priest could not hold back his tears.

There was a noise at the back of the gallery which nobody noticed. A moment later a door opened. The priest raised his crying eyes above his handkerchief, and could not believe what he saw! First one and then another pair of eyes followed the priest's, and then everyone together stood up and stared while the three dead boys came marching up the aisle.

Tom was first, Joe next, and Huck, in old, dirty clothes, walking shyly at the back!

They had been hiding in the unused gallery listening to their own funeral sermon!

... to be continued!

* The text has been adapted from the Adventures of Tom Sawyer
by Mark Twain


  Download the original book for free
 

*Consulta un PDF con la información y resumen de 100 libros en inglés
que puedes descargar en 1 único archivo.

 

  Haz click para comprobar las soluciones

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