The Giving Pig

This came out of a couple of conversations with the kids and staff of Glenside Middle School and Glenside Public Library over the last couple of days. There was some talk about the fact that there are really no recent books for young readers about WW1 (and probably none forthcoming, because I can't imagine any of publishers WANTING me to write such a book). Here's an attempt at one: just add pictures.  Particular note goes to Julie Jurgens. 


   In 1917, there lived a farmer who had a talking pig. One day the farmer came to see the pig, and the pig, who was sensitive and caring, noticed that the farmer seemed depressed.

   "What's wrong?" asked the pig.

   "The country has gone to war," said the farmer. "I have sent all of my children away to fight, and the country is running low on food. We need bacon for breakfast."

   "Take my son," said the pig. "You can make him into bacon."

   So the farmer took the pig's son, and the people in the farmhouse had bacon for a long time to come, even though there was a war on and rations were strict.

   Then one day, the farmer came back, and looked sad again.

   "It is nearly Easter," he said. "And we are under strict rations. It will never be the same celebrating Easter without the children, but it looks as though we may not even have any ham."

   "Take my daughter," said the pig. "You can make her into a wonderful ham."

   So the farmer took the pig's daughter, and the part of his family that was not fighting in the Great War had a delicious ham for easter. The pig didn't mind so much, because he knew they were going to get eaten eventually anyway. He thought that maybe if he kept sending off his children, the farmer would be so grateful that he'd never eat him. 

   Then, one day, the farmer came back looking very sad.

   "What is wrong?" asked the pig. "Do you have to eat me?"

   "Yes," said the farmer. "I will have to eat you. But that is not why I'm sad."

   At this point, since he was about to be killed, the pig didn't really care what was on the farmer's mind anymore, but the farmer spoke up to explain himself anyway.

   "The war is over," said the farmer. "And we won."

   "Isn't that a good thing?" asked the pig. 

   "Yes, but my sons were killed in the trenches," said the farmer, "and even though the war is over, it didn't really accomplish anything. I sent my children away to be slaughtered, and it was all for nothing."

  "Yeah," said the pig. "Tell me about it."

     The End

No comments:

Adam's New Book: Sept 2013