Dream Life and Real Life; a little African story by Olive Schreiner

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Little Jannita sat alone beside a milk-bush. Before her and behind her stretched the plain, covered with red sand and thorny karoo bushes; and here and there a milk-bush, looking like a bundle of pale green rods tied together. Not a tree was to be seen anywhere, except on the banks of the river, and that was far away, and the sun beat on her head. Round her fed the Angora goats she was herding; pretty things, especially the little ones, with white silky curls that touched the ground. But Jannita sat crying. If an angel should gather up in his cup all the tears that have been shed, I think the bitterest would be those of children. By and by she was so tired, and the sun was so hot, she laid her head against the milk-bush, and dropped asleep. She dreamed a beautiful dream. She thought that when she went back to the farmhouse in the evening, the walls were covered with vines and roses, and the kraals were not made of red stone, but of lilac trees full of blossom. And the fat old Boer smiled at her; and the stick he held across the door, for the goats to jump over, was a lily rod with seven blossoms at the end. When she went to the house her mistress gave her a whole roaster-cake for her supper, and the mistress's daughter had stuck a rose in the cake; and her mistress's son-in-law said, "Thank you!" when she pulled off his boots, and did not kick her.

About Olive Schreiner

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Olive Schreiner was born in 1855 in Eastern Cape, South Africa. She had a long and productive career as an author and activist, both in South Africa and in England and Europe. She died in 1920.
Published May 12, 2012 by FQ Books. 21 pages
Genres: Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction, History. Fiction

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