The poem opens with a description of the departing Nikita Morgunka.
Washed in a bath, dressed up
in a jacket and boots,
As if he was on a visit,
To relatives for pies.
Nikita is going in search of a certain country of Muravia, about which his grandfather told him. Grandfather often used to say to him:
Health – time, luck – time,
Wealth and intelligence.
Sometimes, the grandfather will say in a rhyme,
there are no Silenki at twenty, there will be no, and do not wait.”
As in thirty years there is no understanding, –
It will not, so go.
As in forty years
there is no Reinforcement, – so do not look further…
And since Nikita was already 40 years old, and living it hard, he decided to try his luck in the country of Muravia. This country was famous for freedom and justice:
The Earth is long and wide – It’s all
You sow a bunch of one,
And that’s yours.
This is a special world with its own laws, living according to peasant rules, there is no communism or collective farms. Nikita was told about this country by his grandfather.
And now the native village is left behind. Morgunok considers it obligatory to call on the brother-in-law. They were friends from the young, were very close in spirit. Nikita’s brother-in-law tells about the future journey.
Everything is more beautiful and more visible.
She is lying around.
And there is no better than happiness-on it
Until death itself live.
Morgunok leaves outside the village. The villages that come across are already unfamiliar to him. His horse, Gray, let out and sweated. This horse is the most precious thing in Morgunka’s life. On the horse kept all his household up to the last pin. Nikita is the shore of Gray – “like a right hand,” “like an eye in the forehead.” This is his friend, “not a horse, but a man”.
On the way Morgunok meets a priest. They talk, Nikita harnesses the horse and sits down to dinner with the priest. He talks about his life: there are no parishes or services, and he feeds on walking around the villages and offering his services:
There are some where that believe in God –
And I’m here.
There the groom and the bride are waiting. –
They take care of the baby there, –
And only regrets the priest, that he does not have a horse, and it’s really hard to walk on Russian soil. He suggests that Nikita walk together: “Yours is a cart, my tool.” But Nikita does not agree and goes her way. With different people had to know Morgunka. Once he hears a story from one of the random fellow-travelers about the grandfather and the woman who lived in a ramshackle hut “windows – into the earth, the roof – to one side.” Neither the collective farm, nor the state farm, the grandfather did not go, but only in one year began to come to water very much. The water lifted the hut and carried it far, brought to the farmhouse Ei here left. Grandfather just said that he now has to live with the old woman in a new way. Nikita listens and slumbers. And somewhere Muravia is sleeping somewhere.
Soon, Nikita heard a rumor that Comrade Stalin was traveling through Russia, and was going, perhaps, directly to meet the Morgunka. And Nikita thinks about how he will ask Stalin the question of how many more people are waiting for the end of this “Suetorium”, when everything is going to be scrapped in the name of a new life? He wants to ask Stalin to be left alone and alone in the whole of Russia was not driven to the collective farm. He has a horse, a glorious horse, and only two years left
Nikita is forty years old, when it will be too late to get rich.
Far road, Morgunok already all in the dust. An accidental traveler, met by Nikita on the road, suddenly turns out to be his former neighbor Ivan Kuzmich. He, as if blind, leads by the arm a boy, a son. From the story of Ivan Kuzmich it is clear that he has been wandering around so long, and only his son stayed with him. He does not have the strength to work, only he feeds on begging. For the first time next to his neighbor, Nikita quietly and soundly fell asleep. In the morning I only heard the horse neighing. He jumped up all frozen, but there was no neighbor, and neither was the horse. “The cart is here, and the boy is here, and the horse? .. The horse and no…”. Nikita awoke the boy, who told him that his father had replaced him with a bridle, and had taught Morgunka himself for life. What was to do Nikita – he harnessed into the shafts in a cart and went. Tired and completely broken goes Nikita on the road. People look after him for a long time, you rarely see such an eccentric. Yes dogs will bake. In one of the villages he is taken to the village soviet, his documents are being watched. They had nothing to take from Morgunka, they let him go. And again he went to look for his faithful friend, horse.
And Nikita sees an amazing thing – in the field mow gypsies. In the soul of Morgunka a feeling of love for the earth moved, I myself want to walk with a scythe on the field. He asks the gypsies to give him his horse. Gypsies bring him to their stables. They take out one or another horse before him. And the horses are one more beautiful, but only Nikita did not recognize any of them:
– I’m sorry, I can not –
Lie, they say, from the calculation.
“That’s it,” they
threatened with the finger of the Morgunka, “that’s it…”
Nikita sleeps around the gypsies, decides to go to the bazaar next day for a new horse. At night, he painfully thinks about the fact that for centuries the gypsies have stolen horses, but can not they also now steal a good horse. He stealthily sneaks to the stables, but the voice of the watchman stops him. With shame Nikita returns to his cart and hurries away.
Three nights and three days, Nikita is riding in a cart. The people are amazed. And suddenly he hears hooves in front. Suddenly, a turn shows the priest, riding on Gray, on Nikita’s horse. Seeing Morgunka, the priest slowed down his horse, turned and ran at a gallop. While Nikita unraveled the straps and pulled himself out of the cart, the priest was already far away. With all his strength Nikita started to catch up with the priest, shouted to him, but only got tired, fell on the road, clutching his side like a wound. Nikita was lying so long until the boy approached and called him. It is not known whether the priest bought that horse or the thief stole from the thief, but only what Nikita is doing. He continues his journey, remembering his wife, who is waiting for him at home. She does not know anything.
Finally Nikita comes to the bazaar. He is looking for either a priest or his horse, and as the gray horse sees, so will the heart mute. Here he meets and his offender – Ivan Kuzmich. While portraying a blind man, he asks for alms. Nikita grabbed him, leaned against him, held him, did not let him go. But with cunning Bugrov escapes from his hands and runs away. There was Nikita again with nothing.
Again he is on his way. Meets the boy on the tractor. He offers him a lift, and take the cart in tow. Nikita agrees. He learns the next way from the boy. The guy sends him to the village of the Island, where you can buy a horse.
Nikita sees complete devastation in the settlement. “Thin roofs,” “fences are piled up,” and people are smoking in the bush in the shadows in the shadows. ” On the bench sits the grandfather, scales the pipes. As the Morgunok finds out, these are people without forestry. Here, Nikita is trying to buy himself a horse, his grandfather agrees to sell him his. Seeing the horse, Morgunok decides that he’d better walk all his life than buy such a nag. Hearing such words of Nikita, the grandfather asked a bit offended, than their life is bad. Morgunok objects: “You do not live richly.”
– And happiness is not in the gods,
Why is it, son?
Grandfather says that they are quite enough and a piece of bread to live and not grieve. Their children live “worse than blue piglets,” but they are not to blame, their “father is guilty.”
Again Nikita returns to the collective farm, where he left his cart on the receipt. Chairman Andrei Fokich Frolov is ready to show him the collective farm. At dinner, Frolov tells his story. He speaks of his enemy – Grachev. Frolov at one time divided meadows, levied a tax, and for this was a bit. Grachevs met him far from the village, yes all with the oak. He barely crawled to his father’s house. And now he became chairman of the collective farm. Nikita still stayed here, he attended the wedding. At the wedding comes and old Miron Frolov, Andrei Frolov’s grandfather. He married himself for the first time a hundred years ago. The wedding goes all the way, the accordion starts its song. And the dances did not abate, either the beggar or the guest appeared on the threshold. He asked to call the landlady. It’s a traveling father, I agree to marry young people right now. Instantly darted to the threshold Nikita, jumped out into the street and, cutting off the reins,
Slowly Nikita goes along the road and talks to the horse. On the way, a gray-haired old man comes to him, bound for the laurel. Nikita asks a wise old man where the country of Muravia is in the world. The old man replies that there is no such country.
There was a Muravian country,
And no such country.
overgrew the grass-ant.
The elder advises Nikita to join the collective farm. Nikita is still a bit hesitant and already getting cheerful goes home.