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The Magpie Sings the Great Depression:
Selections from DeWitt Clinton High School's Literary Magazine, 1929-1942

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By David M. Linhart, '33

The Magpie, June 1932, v. 33, n. 2, p. 8.

A groping hand, black, frozen, hovered over the city. A pair of small eyes, gleaming impudently, searched the nooks and crannies, the canyons and hiding-places of the city. The eyes found their goal, but the hand did not descend for a light still burned.

A man sat huddled in the snow, his body hunched, his overcoat pulled up over his ears. It was cold—bitterly cold—so cold that he felt as hot as if he were in Hell. His body grew numb. It started from his toes, and pushed slowly, irresistibly toward the tiny candle of life that burned within him. His brain raced. Terror! He was freezing. God! he had to do something—call out—but his only answer was a hollow rasping laugh. He feebly lit a cigaret stub, and under its soothing influence grew calmer.

The numbness increased. The glow of the cigaret dimmed. The black groping hand struck.

Hundreds of people in the richest country in the world froze that night. But still the man with the pig's eyes, and all the men with the pig's eyes, conferred solemnly and put it off until next time.

The Magpie Sings the Great Depression

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