Home Short Story A Beggar – A Short Story from Uzbekistan

A Beggar – A Short Story from Uzbekistan

A Beggar – A Short Story from Uzbekistan
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The beggar was humiliated and trampled by the crowd. He gave up all hope of getting alms and fell to the ground at the edge of the street

By Jumanazar Yuldash

The bazaar was busier today than ever. The cacophony of merchants’ voices, echoing for miles, grated on the ears. A man dressed in rags emerged from the crowd. He looked frail and pale, with grief written all over his face. Indifferent eyes surveyed him, brimming with disdain as they saw him. To them, he was nothing but a stray.

He settled in the heart of the market, starting to beg as expected. Yet, it appeared that his plea stemmed not from necessity but from an unspoken obligation he wished to avoid. Unfortunately, the indifferent onlookers failed to grasp this. Some chased him away instead of offering help, while others pretended not to hear. The beggar’s distress deepened, and he tried to hide his sad glance from the people around him.

Suddenly, an uproar arose among the crowd; people began to scatter and kick up dust clouds.

“Get away!” A threatening voice boomed.

The thundering hooves of the horses sent people into a panic. The people cleared a way for the unknown riders. Amid the chaos, the beggar, gripped by convulsions and confusion, stood frozen in fear, unsure what to do.

“Away, idiot!” the rider in front shouted.

Despite the warning, the beggar couldn’t move; he covered his face with his hands. The horse whinnied, lifting its front legs, kicked him in the chest, and galloped over him.

india-chennai-beggarHe screamed in agony. Blood seeped from his chest, and he tore a piece from his clothes to staunch the flow. He cast a sorrowful gaze on the indifferent faces of the crowd, who made no effort to help and remained mere spectators. The beggar’s plight appeared even more desperate at that moment. Tears glistened in his woeful eyes as he bowed his head. Some felt pity for him, but it didn’t extend beyond that. They simply carried on with their work.

The beggar winced in pain, yet he managed to rise and go on begging. Blood seeped from beneath the makeshift bandage, and he clutched his chest over the cloth to stem the bleeding. Despite the pitiful and dire state of the man in rags, the cold indifference in people’s eyes remained unchanged. They began to resent his continued plea for alms, even in his condition. Passersby deliberately jostled him as they made their way through the street. The beggar was humiliated and trampled by the crowd.

He gave up all hope of getting alms and fell to the ground at the edge of the street. The pain surged back, intensifying his suffering. The beggar bowed his head and began to weep; his voice was buried in the surrounding clamor and went unheard. He gazed into the distance; the pain was no more gnawing at him. Hunger pangs gripped him, and he approached the apple seller. The bright red apples glistened in the light, looking overly delicious.

“What?” nearly growled the apple seller with disdain.

“Please, just one apple, I’m so hungry…” he pleaded, his voice carrying the weight of his last hope.

“Do you have a coin?”


“Then go away!”

The beggar hung his head in sorrow. Suddenly, feeling offended, he took an apple without permission and bit into it with the same defiance. Immediately, the merchant in front of him struck him with a club. The force of the blow caused the apple to slip from the beggar’s hand and roll to the ground, and he recoiled.

“Hit the thief! Hit him!” shouted the merchants and buyers.

Blow after blow, he now lay huddled on the ground. The unkind and hot-tempered people who had pounced upon him kicked him in the legs, stomach, waist, shoulders, and even in the face and head, hurling insults without pause. In the end, they crippled his leg. The beggar lost consciousness but quickly came to. A crowd gathered around him, continuing to heap insults upon him. Yet, the beggar heard nothing, his gaze fixed on the sky, on the radiant sun… Then he closed his eyes.

At that very moment, a miracle happened! The beggar began to rise from the ground. People’s mouths fell open, and they were bewildered. They gazed at him with a mix of fear and astonishment… The beggar was standing suspended in the air, his eyes still closed. As he began to emanate light, his tattered garment transformed into a pristine, cloud-white robe. Enormous wings, resembling those of a dove, sprouted from his shoulders.

The onlookers’ fear dissipated, replaced by wonder. Suddenly, they all understood and knelt at the feet of the ethereal being, bowing in reverence…

[Translated by Munira Norova]


Jumanazar Yuldash - writer- Uzbekistan - Sindh CourierJumanazar Yuldash, born in 1997 in Khiva district, Kharezm, Uzbekistan, graduated from Philology and Uzbek Language faculty of Urgench State University. His stories were published on the pages of national press. His works were included in several collections such as “Song of the Rivers” (Jilgʻalar qoʻshigʻi), “Common hearts” (Mushtarak dillar), “Garden of Creativity” (Ijod gulshani). He was a participant of the Zaamin seminar (2018). Winner of the creative festival “Spring of Uzbekistan II” (“Oʻzbekiston bahori”) in Khiva, 2019. He is Author of the collection of short stories titled “Petrichor” (Yomgʻirdan soʻng).


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