Book 7 Chapter 4
Summary: Latour sends Jacinto to deliver a formal letter of recall to Vaillant; he and Eusabio ride back to Santa Fe. Latour is impressed by Eusabio’s knowledge of and respect for the landscape.
Analysis: In this chapter, Eusabio emerges as an exemplar of the unity of past and present as well as human and environment. He plays the drum for a traditional Navajo dance, passing that tradition on to his nephews, the new generation, “without a word of instruction” (p. 230). He understands the floral growth in the wilderness, and is “careful to obliterate every trace” of his and Latour’s journey through the desert as they travel (p. 232). Cather makes explicit the values that Eusabio embodies: “It was the Indian manner to vanish into the landscape, not to stand out against it… They seemed to have none of the European’s desire to ‘master’ nature, to arrange and re-create. They spent their ingenuity in the other direction: in accommodating themselves to the scene in which they found themselves” (p. 233).