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to one another, or their children to play together. And it

goes without saying that they themselves never spoke a

word to each other. But they both used to go to the same

bar. It was another matter that there was only one bar in

the village. They’d sit at separate tables, drink their beer,

read the paper. If there was only one newspaper, when one

of them finished reading it he’d put it back where he got it,

even if his brother’s table was nearer. The other one did the

same thing if he was the first one to read it.

But the one who finished reading first didn’t leave. He went

on drinking his beer, as if he was waiting for his brother to

finish reading. Almost every day they’d show up at more or

less the same time, as if they knew when they were

supposed to come. They drank their beer, read the paper,

the second one after the first one or the first one after the

second one, then when their glasses were empty they’d

leave. The second one after the first one or the first one

after the second one, just the same. It never happened that

one of them finished his beer sooner and left. They didn’t

have to sneak glances, you could easily see the beer in their

glasses. Or maybe because they were brothers they had the

same rhythm? In any case they drank at the same pace. And

that seemed to show they hadn’t stopped being brothers.

Because as for words, the war had killed the words in both

of them for good.

The years passed and they got older. One of them went

gray, the other one lost his hair, and they kept coming to