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The Summer of the Beautiful White Horse Summary & Study Guide Description
The Summer of the Beautiful White Horse Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis tohelp you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:
This detailed literature summary also contains Quotes and a Free Quiz onThe Summer of the Beautiful White Horse by William Saroyan.
The following version of this story was used to create the guide: Saroyan, William. "The Summer of the Beautiful White Horse." My Name is Aram. Dover Publications, Inc, 2013. Pages 1 - 11.
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In William Saroyan"s short story "The Summer of the Beautiful White Horse," first person narrator, Aram, recalls the summer his cousin, Mourad appeared below his window riding an unfamiliar horse. Aram was only nine years old at the time, and everything about the world seemed beautiful and dreamlike. Because it was four in the morning, Aram wondered if he was still dreaming when he heard Mourad approach his window. However, because it was summer, it was already light, and he could plainly see Mourad atop the stunning horse. Mourad urged him to come outside and join him on a ride. Aram hesitated. He was nervous that his cousin had stolen the animal. Because their family was known throughout the land for their remarkable poverty, he knew his cousin could not have purchased the horse. However, Aram also knew that his family had a reputation for being prideful and honest. The horse was beautiful, though, and Aram loved his cousin, admiring Mourad"s ability to enjoy life unlike anyone else he knew. So Aram dismissed his worries, and jumped out the window and onto the horse.
While riding, Mourad"s refusal to answer Aram"s questions about the horse"s origin confirmed his initial suspicions. Perhaps it was not that bad that Mourad had stolen the animal though. It was not as if he had stolen money, or as if they were going to sell the horse for money. In both those instances, the cousins would truly be liars and thieves. After a while, Mourad told Aram to get down so he could ride by himself. Aram watched as his cousin skillfully and eloquently directed the creature over fields and ditches and back again. When it was Aram"s turn, the horse refused to budge. Mourad told him what to do, anxious that if he did not hurry up, everyone would awaken and discover them. When Aram got the horse to go, he ran wildly, leaping over vines, throwing Aram off his back, and fleeing altogether. It took the boys 30 minutes to recover the animal. Mourad explained they had to hide the horse in a secret location before the town woke up. So they led him to an abandoned barn on a deserted vineyard, and returned home.
Later that afternoon, Aram"s uncle Khosrove and a lonely farmer named John Byro visited Aram"s parents for coffee and cigarettes. During the visit, Khosrove moaned and bellowed as usual. John Byro lamented the disappearance of his horse four weeks prior. He could not even use his surrey now the animal was gone. Shocked at the revelation, Aram fled his home and ran to Mourad"s. He found his cousin mending a small robin"s wing under a tree. Mourad was even talking to the animal. Aram announced what he had learned, insisting that Mourad teach him to ride before they had to return the horse. Mourad said they could not keep him longer than six months, lest they then be considered thieves.
For two weeks, the boys rode the horse every morning before the town awakened. No matter how hard Aram tried to improve, the horse always threw him off his back. Then one day, while leading the horse back to the barn, the boys encountered John Byro in the road. Mourad said he would handle the situation. He told John Byro the horse"s name was My Heart. When John Byro asked to more closely examine the horse, as he resembled his own missing animal, Mourad obliged. Though My Heart was a replica of John Byro"s, John Byro said he knew the boys came from an honest family and bid them a good day. Afterwards, the boys returned My Heart to John Byro"s stable. The next day, he drove his surrey and My Heart to Aram"s heart, exclaiming at the horse"s confounding reappearance, and improved temper.