The Last Leaf – Part 1
Many artists lived in the Greenwich Village area of New York. Two young women named Sue and Johnsy shared a studio apartment at the top of a three-story building. Johnsy’s real name was Joanna.
In November, a cold, unseen stranger came to visit the city. This disease, pneumonia, killed many people. Johnsy lay on her bed, hardly moving. She looked through the small window. She could see the side of the brick house next to her building.
One morning, a doctor examined Johnsy and took her temperature. Then he spoke with Sue in another room.
“She has one chance in — let us say ten,” he said. “And that chance is for her to want to live. Your friend has made up her mind that she is not going to get well. Has she anything on her mind?”
“She — she wanted to paint the Bay of Naples in Italy some day,” said Sue.
“Paint?” said the doctor. “Bosh! Has she anything on her mind worth thinking twice — a man for example?”
“A man?” said Sue. “no, doctor; there is nothing of the kind.”
“I will do all that science can do,” said the doctor. “But whenever my patient begins to count the carriages at her funeral, I take away fifty percent from the curative power of medicines.”
After the doctor had gone, Sue went into the workroom and cried. Then she went to Johnsy’s room with her drawing board, whistling ragtime.
Johnsy lay with her face toward the window. Sue stopped whistling, thinking she was asleep. She began making a pen and ink drawing for a story in a magazine. Young artists must work their way to “Art” by making pictures for magazine stories. Sue heard a low sound, several times repeated. She went quickly to the bedside.
Johnsy’s eyes were open wide. She was looking out the window and counting — counting backward. “Twelve,” she said, and a little later “eleven”; and then “ten” and “nine;” and then “eight” and “seven,” almost together.
Sue looked out the window. What was there to count? …. (continued)
(By O. Henry)
Three-story building ساختمان سه طبقه
Stranger بیگانه, غریبه
Pneumonia ذات الریه
Paint نقاشی کردن
Funeral مراسم به خاک سپاری
Curative دارای خاصیت درمانی
Whistle سوت زدن
Bedside کنار تخت, کنار بستر