Extracts from Adam's Diary, translated from the original ms. eBook: Page1
Mark Twain (2004)
Produced by Kirk Pearson
EXTRACTS FROM ADAM'S DIARY
Translated from the original MS.
by Mark Twain
[NOTE.--I translated a portion of this diary some years ago, anda friend of mine printed a few copies in an incomplete form, butthe public never got them. Since then I have deciphered some moreof Adam's hieroglyphics, and think he has now become sufficientlyimportant as a public character to justify this publication.--M. T.]
This new creature with the long hair is a good deal in the way.It is always hanging around and following me about. I don't likethis; I am not used to company. I wish it would stay with theother animals. Cloudy to-day, wind in the east; think we shallhave rain.... Where did I get that word?... I remember now--the new creature uses it.
Been examining the great waterfall. It is the finest thing on theestate, I think. The new creature calls it Niagara Falls--why,I am sure I do not know. Says it looks like Niagara Falls. Thatis not a reason; it is mere waywardness and imbecility. I get nochance to name anything myself. The new creature names everythingthat comes along, before I can get in a protest. And always thatsame pretext is offered--it looks like the thing. There is thedodo, for instance. Says the moment one looks at it one sees ata glance that it "looks like a dodo." It will have to keep thatname, no doubt. It wearies me to fret about it, and it does nogood, anyway. Dodo! It looks no more like a dodo than I do.
Built me a shelter against the rain, but could not have it tomyself in peace. The new creature intruded. When I tried to putit out it shed water out of the holes it looks with, and wiped itaway with the back of its paws, and made a noise such as some ofthe other animals make when they are in distress. I wish it wouldnot talk; it is always talking. That sounds like a cheap flingat the poor creature, a slur; but I do not mean it so. I have neverheard the human voice before, and any new and strange soundintruding itself here upon the solemn hush of these dreamingsolitudes offends my ear and seems a false note. And this newsound is so close to me; it is right at my shoulder, right at myear, first on one side and then on the other, and I am used onlyto sounds that are more or less distant from me.
The naming goes recklessly on, in spite of anything I can do. Ihad a very good name for the estate, and it was musical and pretty--GARDEN-OF-EDEN. Privately, I continue to call it that, but notany longer publicly. The new creature says it is all woods androcks and scenery, and therefore has no resemblance to a garden.Says it looks like a park, and does not look like anything but apark. Consequently, without consulting me, it has been new-named--NIAGARA FALLS PARK. This is sufficiently high-handed, it seems tome. And already there is a sign up:
KEEP OFF THE GRASS
My life is not as happy as it was.
The new creature eats too much fruit. We are going to run short,most likely. "We" again--that is its word; mine too, now, fromhearing it so much. Good deal of fog this morning. I do not goout in the fog myself. The new creature does. It goes out inall weathers, and stumps right in with its muddy feet. And talks.It used to be so pleasant and quiet here.
Pulled through. This day is getting to be more and more trying.It was selected and set apart last November as a day of rest. Ialready had six of them per week, before. This morning found thenew creature trying to clod apples out of that forbidden tree.
The new creature says its name is Eve. That is all right, I haveno objections. Says it is to call it by when I want it to come.I said it was superfluous, then. The word evidently raised me inits respect; and indeed it is a large, good word, and will bearrepetition. It says it is not an It, it is a She. This is probablydoubtful; yet it is all one to me; what she is were nothing to meif she would but go by herself and not talk.
She has littered the whole estate with execrable names and offensivesigns:
THIS WAY TO THE WHIRLPOOL.
THIS WAY TO GOAT ISLAND.
CAVE OF THE WINDS THIS WAY.
She says this park would make a tidy summer resort, if there wasany custom for it. Summer resort--another invention of hers--justwords, without any meaning. What is a summer resort? But it isbest not to ask her, she has such a rage for explaining.
She has taken to beseeching me to stop going over the Falls. Whatharm does it do? Says it makes her shudder. I wonder why. I havealways done it--always liked the plunge, and the excitement, andthe coolness. I supposed it was what the Falls were for. Theyhave no other use that I can see, and they must have been made forsomething. She says they were only made for scenery--like therhinoceros and the mastodon.
I went over the Falls in a barrel--not satisfactory to her. Wentover in a tub--still not satisfactory. Swam the Whirlpool and theRapids in a fig-leaf suit. It got much damaged. Hence, tediouscomplaints about my extravagance. I am too much hampered here.What I need is change of scene.
I escaped last Tuesday night, and travelled two days, and builtme another shelter, in a secluded place, and obliterated my tracksas well as I could, but she hunted me out by means of a beast whichshe has tamed and calls a wolf, and came making that pitiful noiseagain, and shedding that water out of the places she looks with.I was obliged to return with her, but will presently emigrate again,when occasion offers. She engages herself in many foolish things:among others, trying to study out why the animals called lions andtigers live on grass and flowers, when, as she says, the sort ofteeth they wear would indicate that they were intended to eat eachother. This is foolish, because to do that would be to kill eachother, and that would introduce what, as I understand it, is called"death;" and death, as I have been told, has not yet entered thePark. Which is a pity, on some accounts.
I believe I see what the week is for: it is to give time to restup from the weariness of Sunday. It seems a good idea.... Shehas been climbing that tree again. Clodded her out of it. Shesaid nobody was looking. Seems to consider that a sufficientjustification for chancing any dangerous thing. Told her that.The word justification moved her admiration--and envy too, Ithought. It is a good word.
She told me she was made out of a rib taken from my body. Thisis at least doubtful, if not more than that. I have not missedany rib.... She is in much trouble about the buzzard; saysgrass does not agree with it; is afraid she can't raise it; thinksit was intended to live on decayed flesh. The buzzard must getalong the best it can with what is provided. We cannot overturnthe whole scheme to accommodate the buzzard.
She fell in the pond yesterday, when she was looking at herselfin it, which she is always doing. She nearly strangled, and saidit was most uncomfortable. This made her sorry for the creatureswhich live in there, which she calls fish, for she continues tofasten names on to things that don't need them and don't come whenthey are called by them, which is a matter of no consequence toher, as she is such a numskull anyway; so she got a lot of themout and brought them in last night and put them in my bed to keepwarm, but I have noticed them now and then all day, and I don'tsee that they are any happier there than they were before, onlyquieter. When night comes I shall throw them out-doors. I willnot sleep with them again, for I find them clammy and unpleasantto lie among when a person hasn't anything on.
She has taken up with a snake now. The other animals are glad,for she was always experimenting with them and bothering them;and I am glad, because the snake talks, and this enables me toget a rest.
She says the snake advises her to try the fruit of that tree, andsays the result will be a great and fine and noble education. Itold her there would be another result, too--it would introducedeath into the world. That was a mistake--it had been better tokeep the remark to myself; it only gave her an idea--she couldsave the sick buzzard, and furnish fresh meat to the despondentlions and tigers. I advised her to keep away from the tree. Shesaid she wouldn't. I foresee trouble. Will emigrate.
I have had a variegated time. I escaped that night, and rode ahorse all night as fast as he could go, hoping to get clear out ofthe Park and hide in some other country before the trouble shouldbegin; but it was not to be. About an hour after sunup, as I wasriding through a flowery plain where thousands of animals weregrazing, slumbering, or playing with each other, according