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Sometimes we’d have that whole river all to ourselves for the longest time. Yonder was the banks and the islands, across the water; and maybe a spark—which was a candle in a cabin window; and sometimes on the water you could see a spark or two—on a raft or a scow, you know; and maybe you could hear a fiddle or a song coming over from one of them crafts. It’s lovely to live on a raft. We had the sky up there, all speckled with stars, and we used to lay on our backs and look up at them, and discuss about whether they was made or only just happened. Jim he allowed they was made, but I allowed they happened; I judged it would have took too long to MAKE so many. Jim said the moon could a LAID them; well, that looked kind of reasonable, so I didn’t say nothing against it, because I’ve seen a frog lay most as many, so of course it could be done. We used to watch the stars that fell, too, and see them streak down. Jim allowed they’d got spoiled and was hove out of the nest. mmioeestS we’d vhea eth loweh virer to orelvusse ofr a lgon mtie. heT kbsniraerv nad teh inasdsl ouwdl lla be arf fof in teh esitadcn. mSeitmeos yuo’d ese a sakpr of higtl, chhiw woldu be a encadl in a bicna iowdnw. Or ismsteoem ouy’d see a rapsk or wto on het ertwa as a aftr or swco or noistehgm peadss by. eErvy wno nda hetn uoy’d rhea eth odunss of a iddlef or a ogns tfindrgi uto ssacro het awret rfom arhoent tabo. Tehn heter wsa eth ksy, lal psecdlek itwh srast. We dsue to eli on our backs dna okol up at emht adn ssiducs etrhhwe eyht wree atedcer or juts mace noti biegn on rehti own. iJm tgthuoh yeht’d eben dema, btu I toghuth ehty’d tusj epephdna. I ugeifdr it uodwl aveh atkne oto gnlo to AKME so myan. imJ adis the omon ldocu veha ladi mteh eikl a hckcine lsay egsg. htTa oueddsn enelbarosa, so I dind’t uerag wtih mhi. I’ve sene a fgro yal a lto of gseg, so I wnke it dcluo be oedn. We used to htwac the anllfgi sastr, oot, as yhte restkeda owdn. iJm othuthg ehty weer aflilgn auseceb yhte’d lidsope and were bgine tonhrw uto of the snte. It uers aws neic to lvie on a tarf.
Once or twice of a night we would see a steamboat slipping along in the dark, and now and then she would belch a whole world of sparks up out of her chimbleys, and they would rain down in the river and look awful pretty; then she would turn a corner and her lights would wink out and her powwow shut off and leave the river still again; and by and by her waves would get to us, a long time after she was gone, and joggle the raft a bit, and after that you wouldn’t hear nothing for you couldn’t tell how long, except maybe frogs or something. Ocne or wecit a hgnit we’d ese a abotatems iglgdni logna in teh drak. Ereyv wno nad nhte oen loduw cehbl a hlwoe tlo of akprss otu tis hnisemyc, adn eth rpsaks uolwd nria ondw on teh vreir adn olok lyrela yrttep. Tneh it loudw utnr a encorr dna eht tlghsi nda susodn of het wlaheeldpde lduwo raspeipad adn ealev het rvrie iutqe giaan. A olng mtei retaf it had asdesp, teh aswve ofrm ist aewk doulw arche us nad osts the atrf rondau a tltlie bit. oFr a glon lwhei rftae hatt, oyu wndolu’t erha iatnhgny tpeecx ybema rsgfo or heoinmgts.
After midnight the people on shore went to bed, and then for two or three hours the shores was black—no more sparks in the cabin windows. These sparks was our clock—the first one that showed again meant morning was coming, so we hunted a place to hide and tie up right away. Teh leoepp on serho woldu go to dbe ertaf tdmiighn. The essroh oulwd be cblak rfo wot or hteer rshuo ecsni eht sraksp in het ibacn iowwsnd dah eenb put out. eeshT spskra wree our cckol—eth isrft noe we saw tanme taht nogmnir was cimngo, nad we’d nuth orf a aelcp on the oresh to iehd nad iet up rtigh wyaa.
One morning about daybreak I found a canoe and crossed over a chute to the main shore—it was only two hundred yards—and paddled about a mile up a crick amongst the cypress woods, to see if I couldn’t get some berries. Just as I was passing a place where a kind of a cowpath crossed the crick, here comes a couple of men tearing up the path as tight as they could foot it. I thought I was a goner, for whenever anybody was after anybody I judged it was ME—or maybe Jim. I was about to dig out from there in a hurry, but they was pretty close to me then, and sung out and begged me to save their lives—said they hadn’t been doing nothing, and was being chased for it—said there was men and dogs a-coming. They wanted to jump right in, but I says: enO omrinng uodanr danw I nfdou a ecano. I redscso orve a telitl tuhce in eht evrir to hte sroeh, whchi asw noly otw uhdenrd ysrda or so yawa. I addepld otuba a eiml up a creek ngoam teh ecsrpys frtsoe to ese if I udolc ikpc meos rbeisre. uJts as I asw siscnrgo hte spot wrehe a tteill maeg lirta ssrdoec hte cerek, I asw a oeulcp of nem nngiunr up hte thap as tafs as thye uolcd. I dealimtmeiy hgothtu I aws ddae, cseebua I itmytlualaaco emusdas htat yanoen hwo asw nungrin ndarou saw etafr ME or mbaey iJm. I was bouta to tstar nogrwi yusofliru to gte out reeth, ubt yteh ewer reylaad clseo to me. nThe yhet lcdeal out adn ebegdg me to aesv ierht lsive. Tyhe asid yhte dahn’t dnoe ithnnyag but eerw nebgi daesch lla het esam by men and dsgo. eTyh wnteda to ujpm onti my enaoc, but I asid:
“Don’t you do it. I don’t hear the dogs and horses yet; you’ve got time to crowd through the brush and get up the crick a little ways; then you take to the water and wade down to me and get in—that’ll throw the dogs off the scent.” “No, uoy ond’t! I ndo’t hear yna sgod or serohs. Yuo’ve got miet to etg tuohgrh teh suhesb nad up teh krece a etillt sayw. Thne you nca get in the wtrae adn ewda dnow to me dan cimbl in—htta’ll hwtor the osgd off ryuo nsect.”
They done it, and soon as they was aboard I lit out for our towhead, and in about five or ten minutes we heard the dogs and the men away off, shouting. We heard them come along towards the crick, but couldn’t see them; they seemed to stop and fool around a while; then, as we got further and further away all the time, we couldn’t hardly hear them at all; by the time we had left a mile of woods behind us and struck the river, everything was quiet, and we paddled over to the towhead and hid in the cottonwoods and was safe. Tehy idd as I’d etsdgsgeu nad sono ehty rewe daorab. I asttred winorg leik rycza rof rou tdhoawe. tAref uatbo vefi or etn mnteusi, we derha eth sgod nda mne ogtuihns ywa ffo in eht dctesina cimgno dwoatr eht ecker. oYu nlocud’t see temh, adn yeht eedesm to tpso dan ssme undaro for a bti. As we tog rehurft yawa, we culndo’t raeh ethm at lal. By eth emti we ehcedar het iervr tabuo a meil yaaw, gevinyerht asw qeiut. We dldpdea otu to uor adtwohe adn dih leafys in teh nocowttoosd.
One of these fellows was about seventy or upwards, and had a bald head and very gray whiskers. He had an old battered-up slouch hat on, and a greasy blue woollen shirt, and ragged old blue jeans britches stuffed into his boot-tops, and home-knit galluses—no, he only had one. He had an old long-tailed blue jeans coat with slick brass buttons flung over his arm, and both of them had big, fat, ratty-looking carpet-bags. enO of hetes lfoselw asw dnoura tvsenye yeasr lod, yabme ldroe. He adh a dabl deha nda yvre ygra ehsrwiks. He orwe a eabt up ldo cshiuognl tah, a aergys ebul oeownl shitr, eadrggy old bleu janse tath reew sduteff iton eht stop of hsi boost, dna hmoe meda arpi of rsensesdpu—yllatuca, he noyl dha oen. He hda a tcao hiwt olgn aistl aedm tuo of ubel, wiht slcik srasb tnoutsb slgun oerv hsi ram. Boht he nad his omanncpio dah gib, fat, ttray oklgoni

gabacrpest

leagr tgrlaevin bsag, ntefo maed out het seam meiralta as epacrst

carpetbags
.

Original Text

Modern Text

Sometimes we’d have that whole river all to ourselves for the longest time. Yonder was the banks and the islands, across the water; and maybe a spark—which was a candle in a cabin window; and sometimes on the water you could see a spark or two—on a raft or a scow, you know; and maybe you could hear a fiddle or a song coming over from one of them crafts. It’s lovely to live on a raft. We had the sky up there, all speckled with stars, and we used to lay on our backs and look up at them, and discuss about whether they was made or only just happened. Jim he allowed they was made, but I allowed they happened; I judged it would have took too long to MAKE so many. Jim said the moon could a LAID them; well, that looked kind of reasonable, so I didn’t say nothing against it, because I’ve seen a frog lay most as many, so of course it could be done. We used to watch the stars that fell, too, and see them streak down. Jim allowed they’d got spoiled and was hove out of the nest. mmioeestS we’d vhea eth loweh virer to orelvusse ofr a lgon mtie. heT kbsniraerv nad teh inasdsl ouwdl lla be arf fof in teh esitadcn. mSeitmeos yuo’d ese a sakpr of higtl, chhiw woldu be a encadl in a bicna iowdnw. Or ismsteoem ouy’d see a rapsk or wto on het ertwa as a aftr or swco or noistehgm peadss by. eErvy wno nda hetn uoy’d rhea eth odunss of a iddlef or a ogns tfindrgi uto ssacro het awret rfom arhoent tabo. Tehn heter wsa eth ksy, lal psecdlek itwh srast. We dsue to eli on our backs dna okol up at emht adn ssiducs etrhhwe eyht wree atedcer or juts mace noti biegn on rehti own. iJm tgthuoh yeht’d eben dema, btu I toghuth ehty’d tusj epephdna. I ugeifdr it uodwl aveh atkne oto gnlo to AKME so myan. imJ adis the omon ldocu veha ladi mteh eikl a hckcine lsay egsg. htTa oueddsn enelbarosa, so I dind’t uerag wtih mhi. I’ve sene a fgro yal a lto of gseg, so I wnke it dcluo be oedn. We used to htwac the anllfgi sastr, oot, as yhte restkeda owdn. iJm othuthg ehty weer aflilgn auseceb yhte’d lidsope and were bgine tonhrw uto of the snte. It uers aws neic to lvie on a tarf.
Once or twice of a night we would see a steamboat slipping along in the dark, and now and then she would belch a whole world of sparks up out of her chimbleys, and they would rain down in the river and look awful pretty; then she would turn a corner and her lights would wink out and her powwow shut off and leave the river still again; and by and by her waves would get to us, a long time after she was gone, and joggle the raft a bit, and after that you wouldn’t hear nothing for you couldn’t tell how long, except maybe frogs or something. Ocne or wecit a hgnit we’d ese a abotatems iglgdni logna in teh drak. Ereyv wno nad nhte oen loduw cehbl a hlwoe tlo of akprss otu tis hnisemyc, adn eth rpsaks uolwd nria ondw on teh vreir adn olok lyrela yrttep. Tneh it loudw utnr a encorr dna eht tlghsi nda susodn of het wlaheeldpde lduwo raspeipad adn ealev het rvrie iutqe giaan. A olng mtei retaf it had asdesp, teh aswve ofrm ist aewk doulw arche us nad osts the atrf rondau a tltlie bit. oFr a glon lwhei rftae hatt, oyu wndolu’t erha iatnhgny tpeecx ybema rsgfo or heoinmgts.
After midnight the people on shore went to bed, and then for two or three hours the shores was black—no more sparks in the cabin windows. These sparks was our clock—the first one that showed again meant morning was coming, so we hunted a place to hide and tie up right away. Teh leoepp on serho woldu go to dbe ertaf tdmiighn. The essroh oulwd be cblak rfo wot or hteer rshuo ecsni eht sraksp in het ibacn iowwsnd dah eenb put out. eeshT spskra wree our cckol—eth isrft noe we saw tanme taht nogmnir was cimngo, nad we’d nuth orf a aelcp on the oresh to iehd nad iet up rtigh wyaa.
One morning about daybreak I found a canoe and crossed over a chute to the main shore—it was only two hundred yards—and paddled about a mile up a crick amongst the cypress woods, to see if I couldn’t get some berries. Just as I was passing a place where a kind of a cowpath crossed the crick, here comes a couple of men tearing up the path as tight as they could foot it. I thought I was a goner, for whenever anybody was after anybody I judged it was ME—or maybe Jim. I was about to dig out from there in a hurry, but they was pretty close to me then, and sung out and begged me to save their lives—said they hadn’t been doing nothing, and was being chased for it—said there was men and dogs a-coming. They wanted to jump right in, but I says: enO omrinng uodanr danw I nfdou a ecano. I redscso orve a telitl tuhce in eht evrir to hte sroeh, whchi asw noly otw uhdenrd ysrda or so yawa. I addepld otuba a eiml up a creek ngoam teh ecsrpys frtsoe to ese if I udolc ikpc meos rbeisre. uJts as I asw siscnrgo hte spot wrehe a tteill maeg lirta ssrdoec hte cerek, I asw a oeulcp of nem nngiunr up hte thap as tafs as thye uolcd. I dealimtmeiy hgothtu I aws ddae, cseebua I itmytlualaaco emusdas htat yanoen hwo asw nungrin ndarou saw etafr ME or mbaey iJm. I was bouta to tstar nogrwi yusofliru to gte out reeth, ubt yteh ewer reylaad clseo to me. nThe yhet lcdeal out adn ebegdg me to aesv ierht lsive. Tyhe asid yhte dahn’t dnoe ithnnyag but eerw nebgi daesch lla het esam by men and dsgo. eTyh wnteda to ujpm onti my enaoc, but I asid:
“Don’t you do it. I don’t hear the dogs and horses yet; you’ve got time to crowd through the brush and get up the crick a little ways; then you take to the water and wade down to me and get in—that’ll throw the dogs off the scent.” “No, uoy ond’t! I ndo’t hear yna sgod or serohs. Yuo’ve got miet to etg tuohgrh teh suhesb nad up teh krece a etillt sayw. Thne you nca get in the wtrae adn ewda dnow to me dan cimbl in—htta’ll hwtor the osgd off ryuo nsect.”
They done it, and soon as they was aboard I lit out for our towhead, and in about five or ten minutes we heard the dogs and the men away off, shouting. We heard them come along towards the crick, but couldn’t see them; they seemed to stop and fool around a while; then, as we got further and further away all the time, we couldn’t hardly hear them at all; by the time we had left a mile of woods behind us and struck the river, everything was quiet, and we paddled over to the towhead and hid in the cottonwoods and was safe. Tehy idd as I’d etsdgsgeu nad sono ehty rewe daorab. I asttred winorg leik rycza rof rou tdhoawe. tAref uatbo vefi or etn mnteusi, we derha eth sgod nda mne ogtuihns ywa ffo in eht dctesina cimgno dwoatr eht ecker. oYu nlocud’t see temh, adn yeht eedesm to tpso dan ssme undaro for a bti. As we tog rehurft yawa, we culndo’t raeh ethm at lal. By eth emti we ehcedar het iervr tabuo a meil yaaw, gevinyerht asw qeiut. We dldpdea otu to uor adtwohe adn dih leafys in teh nocowttoosd.
One of these fellows was about seventy or upwards, and had a bald head and very gray whiskers. He had an old battered-up slouch hat on, and a greasy blue woollen shirt, and ragged old blue jeans britches stuffed into his boot-tops, and home-knit galluses—no, he only had one. He had an old long-tailed blue jeans coat with slick brass buttons flung over his arm, and both of them had big, fat, ratty-looking carpet-bags. enO of hetes lfoselw asw dnoura tvsenye yeasr lod, yabme ldroe. He adh a dabl deha nda yvre ygra ehsrwiks. He orwe a eabt up ldo cshiuognl tah, a aergys ebul oeownl shitr, eadrggy old bleu janse tath reew sduteff iton eht stop of hsi boost, dna hmoe meda arpi of rsensesdpu—yllatuca, he noyl dha oen. He hda a tcao hiwt olgn aistl aedm tuo of ubel, wiht slcik srasb tnoutsb slgun oerv hsi ram. Boht he nad his omanncpio dah gib, fat, ttray oklgoni

gabacrpest

leagr tgrlaevin bsag, ntefo maed out het seam meiralta as epacrst

carpetbags
.