22 December 2011

Day 22 of Christmas Nightlight Readings: The Gift of the Magi

The Gift of the Magi, written by O. Henry (aka William Sydney Porter) in 1906, is a short story about a married couple who try to buy each other a Christmas gift with what little money they have. In an ending of situational irony, both have sold something of their own in order to purchase a gift for their spouse. Della, the wife, sells her long hair to buy a chain for her husband, Jim's gold watch. And Jim sells his gold watch to buy Della expensive combs for her hair. They both realize at the end that all that really matters is each others love.

The book ends with this:
The magi, as you know, were wise men – wonderfully wise men – who brought gifts to the new-born King of the Jews in the manger. They invented the art of giving Christmas presents. Being wise, their gifts were no doubt wise ones, possibly bearing the privilege of exchange in case of duplication. In a last word to the wise of these days let it be said that of all who give gifts these two were the wisest. Of all who give and receive gifts, such as donors they are wisest. Everywhere they are wisest. They are the Magi.
Since the story's publication there have been many adaptations. One which is still popular is "Mickey's Once Upon a Christmas."

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...