Monday, April 23, 2012

Day One Hundred Fourteen: "Petty Thief" by A Yi


Two cops pursue and decide to torture an orphan who is a petty thief, his only crime, stealing sweet potatoes and cured meat. There is no explanation for their desire to torture the boy and in the end, they find themselves outsmarted by the boy when he escapes. Sadly, the escape is only temporary but there is a level of respect that is established by the mere fact of the escape itself. Ultimately, the two cops rescue the boy from a certain death as he stands on a ledge in fear of retribution.

I sense that on a metaphorical level this story is much richer than what I gathered on a quick first read. This is one I'd return to and even in translation, it is powerful and hasn't lost its strength. That alone says a lot for this story and this writer. Very nice.

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