<Edition>[Selections. 1982]. Library of America. New York: Literary Classics of the U.S., 1982</Edition>
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<p> PART ONE
<p> The Wild
<p> I <i>The Trail of the Meat</i>
<p>Dark spruce forest frowned on either side the frozen waterway.
The trees had been stripped by a recent wind of their white covering of
frost, and they seemed to lean toward each other, black and ominous, in
the fading light. A vast silence reigned over the land. The land
itself was a desolation, lifeless, without movement, so lone and cold
that the spirit of it was not even that of sadness. There was a hint in
it of laughter, but of a laughter more terrible than any sadness -- a
laughter that was mirthless as the smile of the Sphinx, a laughter cold
as . . .