فصل 24

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فصل 24

توضیح مختصر

  • زمان مطالعه 4 دقیقه
  • سطح ساده

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Chapter twenty four

It was now the eighth day since my crash landing in the desert, and I’d listened to the story about the salesclerk as I was drinking the last drop of my water supply.

“Ah,” I said to the little prince, “your memories are very pleasant, but I haven’t yet repaired my plane. I have nothing left to drink, and I, too, would be glad to walk very slowly toward a water fountain!”

“My friend the fox told me -“

“Little fellow, this has nothing to do with the fox!”

“Why?”

“Because we’re going to die of thirst.”

The little prince didn’t follow my reasoning, and answered me, “It’s good to have had a friend, even if you’re going to die. Myself, I’m very glad to have had a fox for a friend.”

“He doesn’t realize the danger,” I said to myself. “He’s never hungry or thirsty. A little sunlight is enough for him…”

But the little prince looked at me and answered my thought. “I’m thirsty, too… Let’s find a well…”

I made an exasperated gesture. It is absurd looking for a well, at random, in the vastness of the desert. But even so, we started walking.

When we had walked for several hours in silence, night fell and stars began to appear. I noticed them as in a dream, being somewhat feverish on account of my thirst. The little prince’s words danced in my memory.

“So you’re thirsty, too?” I asked.

But he didn’t answer my question. He merely said to me, “Water can also be good for the heart…”

I didn’t understand his answer, but I said nothing…” I knew by this time that it was no use questioning him.

He was tired. He sat down. I sat down next to him. And after a silence, he spoke again. “The stars are beautiful because of a flower you don’t see…”

I answered, “Yes, of course,” and without speaking another word I stared at the ridges of sand in the moonlight.

“The desert is beautiful,” the little prince added.

And it was true. I’ve always loved the desert. You sit down on a sand dune. You see nothing. You hear nothing. And yet something shines, something sings in that silence…

“What makes the desert beautiful,” the little prince said, “is that it hides a well somewhere…”

I was surprised by suddenly understanding that mysterious radiance of the sands. When I was a little boy I lived in an old house, and there was a legend that a treasure was buried in it somewhere.

Of course, no one was ever able to find the treasure, perhaps no one even searched. But it cast a spell over that whole house. My house hid a secret in the depths of its heart…

“Yes,” I said to the little prince, “whether it’s a house or the stars or the desert, what makes them beautiful is invisible!”

“I’m glad,” he said, “you agree with my fox.”

As the little prince was falling asleep, I picked him up in my arms, and started walking again. I was moved.

It was as if I was carrying a fragile treasure. It actually seemed to me there was nothing more fragile on Earth.

By the light of the moon, I gazed at that pale forehead, those closed eyes, those locks of hair trembling in the wind, and I said to myself, “What I’m looking at is only a shell. What’s most important is invisible…”

As his lips parted in a half smile, I said to myself, again, “What moves me so deeply about this sleeping little prince is his loyalty to a flower - the image of a rose shining within him like the flame within a lamp, even when he’s asleep…” And I realized he was even more fragile than I had thought. Lamps must be protected: a gust of wind can blow them out…”

And walking on like that, I found the well at daybreak.

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