A young man brings a drunken woman, dancing in a brook, to her flat. A brightly looking, perhaps ten-year-old boy does not wonder at all, there are often men coming with his mother this way. The young man puts up the woman with a scarred face to the night but he does not wish to lie with her as others. He is captivated by the boy sitting in a wooden case who entrusts to him that his legs are not able to walk from the very birth. The boy boasts of his collection of insects placed in various small boxes. Though he practically cannot leave the miserable basement flat he is very clever, with rich vocabulary and prudent diction. The young man promises him to come again the next day. He fulfils the promise and brings a new store of small boxes. Out of gratitude, mother of the boy, stigmatised for ever by knife of some lover, offers the young man her body. He tactfully refuses her. Then the boy tells him about his dream. After he has a vehicle, in which he can go out, he will beg enough money to buy for him and mother a big house in wide fields. Mother embraces her little son and sings him a song: There come dog's lot, nasty lot, further on a suffering, suffering and rowing, heart will be broken! Things are looking bad, things are looking bad, where to hide my head!
Maxim Gorkij (Psoty lopoty – povídka)
Dog's Lot, Nasty Lot