F. A. Iskander
Rabbits and boas
Events take place many years ago in a distant African country. Boas tirelessly hunt for rabbits, and monkeys and elephants observe neutrality. Despite the fact that rabbits usually run very fast, at the sight of boas they seem to fall into a stupor. Boas do not choke rabbits, but as if hypnotize them. Once a young boa buzzes as to why rabbits succumb to hypnosis and whether there were attempts at rebellion. Then another boa, nicknamed Kosa, although in fact he is one-eyed, decides to tell his young friend “an amazing story” about how a rabbit swallowed by him suddenly rebelled right in his stomach, did not want to “ram it up” and ” “from his stomach all kinds of audacity. Then the head of the boas, the Great Python, ordered the slave to be driven to the Elephant Trail, so that the elephants “rammed” bold rabbit, even at the cost of health and even the life of the “miserable” boa constrictor of Sloth, for “the boa constrictor from which the rabbit speaks is not the boa constrictor that we need.” A wretched boa came to wake only two weeks later and already one-eyed, not remembering at what point a bold rabbit jumped out of it.
The story of the Scythe is overheard by a rabbit, whose name is Ponderer, since he thinks a lot; as a result of long reflection, this rabbit comes to a bold conclusion and informs him about the shocked boas: “Your hypnosis is our fear. Our fear is your hypnosis.” With this sensational news Ponderer hurries to other rabbits. Ordinary rabbits are delighted with the idea of a pondered one, but such a freethinker does not like the King of rabbits, and he reminds rabbits that although “the fact that boas swallow rabbits is a terrible injustice,” but for this injustice rabbits use “a small but charming injustice, appropriating the most delicate food products grown by the natives “: peas, cabbage, beans, and if one injustice is canceled, then the second must be canceled. Fearing the destructive power of everything new, as well as the loss of his authority in the eyes of ordinary rabbits, the King encourages rabbits to be content with what is, as well as an eternal dream of growing the delicious Cauliflower in the near future. Rabbits feel that “in the words of the Ponderer there is some seductive but too disturbing truth, and in the King’s words there is some boring, but calming truth.”
Though for the common rabbits The pondered hero is still the hero, the King decides to remove it secretly and slanders the former friend of the Ponderer, and now – close to the court and the favorite of the Queen named Resourceful to betray the disgraced rabbit, for which it is necessary to read loudly in the jungle a poem composed by the court poet with “hints “on the location of the pondered. The resourceful agrees, and one day, when Ponderer and his student by the name of the Wanderer meditate on how to eliminate the injustice from the life of rabbits, a young boa constricts them. The pondered...
Meanwhile, the young boa, daring after eating Ponderer, comes to the conclusion that the boa constitutes a boa constrictor, and not some foreign Python. For such a daring thought, the boa constricts are sent to the desert. There, too, for treachery, they also exile Nakhodchivy (the King disowned him). The hungry boa constrictor soon comes up with a new method of eating rabbits – through strangulation – and swallows the astonished Nakhodchivy. Boa logically decides that with “such a brilliant discovery” the Great Python will “receive it with open arms,” and returns from the desert.
Meanwhile, in the jungle, the Wanderer is engaged in a huge educational work among rabbits – he is even ready to run the boa constrictor in both directions as an experiment. In the epoch of dying hypnosis reigns complete chaos: “The discovery of the Ponderer on hypnosis and even the Promise of the Wanderer to run across the boa constrictor in many ways shook the centuries-old relationship between rabbits and boas.” As a result, there is “a huge number of anarchically-minded rabbits, weak or not at all amenable to hypnosis.” But the kingdom of rabbits does not fall apart precisely because of the return of the Udav-Desert. He offers a method of strangling rabbits and demonstrates it on Kos, so that he emits a spirit. After this, the Great Python forgives the Hermit and appoints him as his deputy. Soon the Hermit tells the boas about the death of the Great Python and that, according to the will of the deceased, he, the Great Hermitage, will rule them. While the boa constrictors improve in strangling technique, glorifying the new ruler, the King of rabbits guesses and notifies the rabbits of the impending danger, offering the old, but the only method of combating boas – “multiply ahead of time.”
Interestingly, both rabbits and boas regret the good old days. The activity of the Aspirant now, when the boas are strangled in succession, has “less and less success”. Rabbits idealize the epoch of hypnosis, because then the dying person did not feel pain and did not resist, boas – because it was easier to catch rabbits, but both of them converge on what used to be order.
R. S. Later the author was destined to be convinced of the scientific correctness of Ponderer’s observations: one familiar serpent “with contemptuous certainty” informed him “that there is no hypnosis, that all these are legends that have come down to us from primitive savages.”