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can bring down the largest game if the person squeezing the trigger is equal to his quarry. They also bought a pair of brown woolen secondhand trousers, a dark green wool shirt, and a pair of low-cut Converse sneakers, which are sturdier and do the same job as moccasins for a man who plans to walk softly in the woods. In fact, all the clothing was bought with the silence of the hunt in mind, and Little Bird painted the sneakers green and brown and spotted the same colors on the pants and shirt to make them blend even more with the background of the springtime forest, as their wool texture would soundlessly harmonize with the quiet of the brush.

Emmett seldom spoke with Little Bird. He simply followed him into the hills every morning after sunrise and coffee, and watched his every quick but careful movement, learning as much as his Indian brother wanted to teach him, until dusk fell and they returned from the woods to the cabin in El Rito where they ate dry bread, deer jerky, and a thick, bean-paste stew and smoked the only tobacco of the long day before undressing in separate rooms and Iying down on the matted floor with their women and talking softly with them, while making love for an hour or so until it was beautiful to stop and fall asleep to dream of what the next day might bring.

Emmett followed Little Bird's eyes during their first week together in the New Mexican hills bordering Colorado, and saw the many different creatures who lived there, who sensed their presence but were not alarmed because of their quiet way and the scent Little Bird spread on their camouflaged clothing--a scent that came from tiny sacs of liquid found above the hind hooves of deer. Little Bird had acquired and saved this liquid from the many deer he had slain over the years. It was Little Bird's knowledge of the ways of the wilderness and Emmett's careful attention to his teacher's planned style of movement that allowed them to approach and get within yards of the splendid animals of the land.

Emmett flashed on his past experience in the wilderness of the Italian Alps, but he felt more of a closeness here with the earth and the life which lived from it. He was especially awed by the delicate nearness he was permitted by the animals. The cottontails and jackrabbits, the skunks and raccoons, the feathered tribes of birds perched by their nests at the base of the hills by the cabin in El Rito. And higher up toward the range of mountaintops where the wilderness was truly unspoiled, it was the same. Snowshoe rabbits gave them a glance, porcupines eyed them from the underbrush; [end page 368]


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