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“Strasti Mordasti”
Genre: drama, short story 

Life is a fantastic thing. It has detestable sides, yet if you change your way of thinking they will become magnificent. That is what the story “Starasti Mordasti” all about.
This short and very vexing story was written by Maxim Gorky.
It is about the life of a prostitute and her disabled son.
Once a random man found a seedy-looking woman in the dirty puddle.
Her name was Mashka. She was drunk and singing a peculiar song.
That kind man did not leave her in trouble. He cordially brought her home.
In her rickety home he met a little boy without legs.
Then between the boy and the man unrestrained conversation was suddenly sparked.
Little one was very astute and smart. He clearly seemed to understand the life he was living and understood it as it was.
After little while he looked at his intoxicated sleeping mother and asked a question, which flabbergasted the man:
“Would you like to lie with my mother?”
“Why are you asking that?”
“Because everybody does. Don’t worry, I will turn off the light.”
The overall atmosphere plunges you into a feeling of a debauchery and filth. Suddenly, a rush of sentimental sensitivity arises in the reader. One of these moments happened when the boy showed to his guest a collection of his insects. Only one thing in the world was disappointing the guy. Unfortunately, he didn’t have butterflies in his collection...

At some point you start to feel very sorry for the situation.
You realize that when an individual has hit rock bottom in life, a human being never loses their sense of beauty, humaneness and purity of mind. You realize that life is beautiful since you are alive.


  1. Thank you for recommending such a powerful thing!

  2. I was amazed by how mature this little boy was, how strong was his desire to live, how sincere was his dream to see the real meadow.. We have everything and simply don't appreciate it, while he had nothing and enjoyed each moment of his being. I'm touched..

  3. this seem like a very interesting book wish I could read Russian tho :p