Friday, December 15, 2006

One Potato, Two Potato by Cynthia DeFelice

This is a delightful story about Mr. and Mrs. O’Grady, who live a sparse life, and who each wish only for a friend with whom to discuss root rot and potato recipes. One day, while digging for the last potato, Mr. O’Grady uncovers a large pot buried in the hillside. He brings it home, and the O’Grady’s discover that the pot makes a duplicate of everything that they put in it. So they toss in their last potato and bring out two, then Mrs. O’Grady’s single hairpin to make a set. While the story could have easily gone differently from this point, the O’Grady’s instead take from the pot only what they truly need, without becoming greedy. From their solitary candle, they make enough to light their way through winter, and they duplicate their one tattered blanket so that neither will have to go cold. The story ends with a happy accident that leaves each of the O’Grady’s with the friend they had desired. This is a wonderfully quaint story, full of quiet spirit and rough charm. -Kuan Yin

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