Michael cured by a horse

Another horse-instance from Jews Without Money by Michael Gold, woodcuts by Howard Simon, published by International Publishers, New York, NY, 1937 (16th edition)

Michael became deathly ill once, and it started with a Fourth of July firework. A firecracker came in through his bedroom window, landed on his pillow, and went off. It tore a hunk out of his shoulder and while his body healed, his mind did not and he began to lose weight. A doctor was no help, so his mother called in a Speaker-Woman. Baba Sima was a mess — no teeth, a hunched back, dressed like a beggar. First she turned the boy over onto his stomach, then took a blunt knife and drew on his back while chanting a song and praying. She then ate prodigious quantities of Michael’s mother’s cookies and drank a gallon of tea. She came back three more times and always assigned tasks, like drinking water from a certain place at a certain time or collecting various muds and dungs to make a paste. The last time, Baba Sima came with a pan and a ball of lead. She heated the lead on the stove and poured the hot lead into a pail of cold water, and declared the shape to be that of a horse:

“We stared at the chunk of jagged lead. Yes, we assured each other in amazement, it had taken on the shape of a horse. And the next night, exactly at midnight, my father led me into the livery stable, and I whispered into the ear of one of the coach horses: ‘My fright in your body; God is Jehova,’ I said, giving the horse an apple which he munched sleepily. ”

Michael was made whole again. No more nightmares. He even checked with the stable owner to see if the horse suffered from nightmares. It didn’t.


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