Tom Sawyer – Part Thirty

Before you read the text, read the following comprehension questions.

1. Why didn’t Tom want to move and make a noise in his bed?

2. Which of the following did Tom NOT hear as he lay in bed?
A beetle, a dog, Sid, a cat, a neighbour, the clock, his Aunt Polly, a cricket, a bottle, wooden parts of the house.

3. What noise did Tom make as he crawled along the roof?

4. What did Huckleberry Finn have with him?

5. Which of the following best describes the general appearance of the cemetery?

a) Small and tidy
b) Old and well-maintained
c) Dark and in bad shape
d) Bright and full of insects

Now read the text and answer the questions.

AT half-past nine, that night, Tom and Sid were sent to bed, as usual. They said their prayers, and Sid was soon asleep. Tom lay awake and waited impatiently. When it seemed to him that it must be nearly daylight, he looked at the clock and saw that it was only ten! This was terrible. He wanted to move and turn over in the bed, but he was afraid he might wake Sid up. So he lay still, and stared up into the darkness.

Everything was very quiet and still. Eventually, out of the stillness, he began to notice soft little noises. The ticking of the clock, the cracking of old wooden beams and posts in the house. The stairs creaked faintly. Obviously, there were ghosts about.

He heard snoring coming from Aunt Polly's bedroom. And now the annoying noise of a cricket that nobody would be able to find began. Next the horrible ticking of a beetle in the wall behind the bed made Tom shake. It meant that somebody was going to die soon. Then he heard a dog howling and barking far away, and was immediately answered by a weaker howl from a further distance.

Tom was suffering. At last he was convinced that time had stopped and eternity had begun. He began to fall asleep despite all of this. The clock struck eleven, but he did not hear it. And then, mixing together with his dreams, there was a long, sad crying. He was disturbed by a neighbour opening a window and shouting ‘Go away you devil cat!” and the sound of a bottle being thrown and breaking on the ground. This woke him up again. A minute later he was wide awake, and in another minute he was dressed and out of the window and creeping along the roof on his hands and knees.

He "meow'd" like a cat once or twice, just to be safe, then jumped to the roof of the woodshed and then to the ground. Huckleberry Finn was there, with his dead cat. The boys walked off and disappeared in the darkness.

After half an hour they were walking slowly through the tall grass of the cemetery. It was a graveyard like the old-fashioned Western kind. It was on a hill, about two kilometres from the village. It had a crazy wooden fence around it, which leaned inward in places, and outward the rest of the time, but stood straight upright nowhere. Grass and weeds grew all over the whole cemetery.

All the old graves were sunken down below the level of the ground and there was not a gravestone anywhere. Old, worm-eaten pieces of wood were at the top of many graves. None of them were straight and they had words like "Sacred to the memory of….whoever" painted on them. But these words were so old and worn that they could hardly be read even if there had been some light.Diccionario online

A soft wind moaned through the trees, and Tom feared it might be the spirits of the dead, complaining at being disturbed. The boys didn’t talk much, and only under their breath and in whispers. The time and the place and the deep sadness and silence affected their mood.

They found the fresh, new grave they were looking for and sat under the branches of three huge trees near the grave.

... to be continued!

* The text has been adapted from the Adventures of Tom Sawyer
by Mark Twain

  Download the original book for free

*Consulta un PDF con la información y resumen de 100 libros en inglés
que puedes descargar en 1 único archivo.


  Haz click para comprobar las soluciones

Tom Sawyer – Part Thirty-one

Before you read the text, read the following comprehension questions.

1. What kind of bird could the boys hear in the distance?

2. What did the boys initially think was coming towards them?

3. Which of the three men were drunk?

4. What are the names of the other two men?

5. What was in the wheelbarrow?

Now read the text and answer the questions.
Then they waited in silence for what seemed a long time. The noise of a distant owl was the only sound that disturbed the dead stillness.

Tom's reflections became oppressive. He needed to talk. So he said in a whisper, "Hucky, do you believe the dead people like it for us to be here?"
Huckleberry whispered, "I wish I knew. It's very sad, isn’t it?"
"For sure it is."

There was a long pause, while the boys thought about this. Then Tom whispered, "Hey, Hucky, do you think Hoss Williams can hear us talking?"
"Of course he does. At least, his spirit does."
Tom, after a pause, "I wish I'd said Mister Williams. But I didn’t mean to offend. Everybody calls him Hoss."
"A dead body can't be too fussy. I don’t think these dead people care how people talk about them, Tom."
This comment stopped the boys talking, and conversation died again.

Soon, Tom grabbed his friend’s arm and said, "Sh!"
"What is it, Tom?" And the two boys sat close together with beating hearts.

"Sh! There it is again! Didn't you hear it?"
"There! Now do you hear it?"

"God, Tom, they're coming! They're coming, for sure. What'll we do?"

"I don’t know. Do you think they'll see us?"
"Oh, Tom, they can see in the dark, the same as cats. I wish I hadn't come."

"Oh, don't be afraid. I don't believe they'll bother us. We’re not doing any harm. If we keep perfectly still, maybe they won't notice us at all."

"I'll try to, Tom, but, Jesus, I can’t stop shivering."


The boys touched their heads together and scarcely breathed. A soft sound of voices came up from the far end of the graveyard.

"Look there!" whispered Tom. "What is it?"Diccionario online
"It's the devil! Oh, Tom, this is awful."

Some dark figures came towards them through the dark, swinging an old- fashioned light that spotted the ground with lots of little dots of light.

Presently Huckleberry whispered with a shiver:
"It's devils for sure. Three of them! Jesus, Tom, we're finished! Can you pray?"

"I'll try, but don't be afraid. They’re not going to hurt us. 'Now I lay me down to sleep, I…'"
"What is it, Huck?"
"They're humans! One of them is, anyway. One of them is old Muff Potter's voice."
"No….it can’t be, is it?"

"Yes, I’m sure. Don't move, stay still. He’s not sharp enough to notice us. He’s drunk, as usual"

"All right, I'll keep still. Now I’ve lost them. Can’t see them. Wait, here they come again. Now they're hot. Cold again. Hot again. Red hot! They're closer. Hey, Huck, I know another one of those voices, it's Injun Joe."

"Really? That murdering Indian! I'd rather they were devils. What are they doing?"

The whispering stopped now because the three men had reached the grave and stood within a few feet of where the boys were hiding.

"Here it is," said the third voice, and he held the light up and revealed the face of young Doctor Robinson.

Potter and Injun Joe were carrying a wheelbarrow with a rope and a couple of shovels in it. They put it down and began to open the grave. The doctor put the lantern at the top of the grave and came and sat down with his back against one of the trees. He was so close the boys could have touched him.

... to be continued!

* The text has been adapted from the Adventures of Tom Sawyer
by Mark Twain

  Download the original book for free

*Consulta un PDF con la información y resumen de 100 libros en inglés
que puedes descargar en 1 único archivo.


  Haz click para comprobar las soluciones

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