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I slid from the boom into deep water, and behind me came the wave of the wrath of the river. I heard its voice and the scream of the middle part of the bridge as it moved from the piers and sank, and I knew no more till I rose in the middle of the great flood. I put forth my hand to swim, and lo! it fell upon the knotted hair of the head of a man. He was dead …


This is from “The City of Dreadful Night” in Life’s Handicap. The narrator is wandering through Lahore City in the moonlight, one stifling night in the hot season, when the road is lined with the bodies of the sleepers, some of them wrapped in shroud-like cloths, some naked. He hears the muezzin roaring out his call to prayer at midnight, and does not make his way back until the first light of the dawn.