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Waifs and Strays Author by O. Henry

Waifs and Strays

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Waifs and Strays by O. Henry


“Waifs and Strays” is a short story by O. Henry, one of the most celebrated American writers of the early 20th century. The story was first published in 1907 as part of his collection “The Trimmed Lamp and Other Stories.”

The story follows the protagonist, a man named Alec who is down on his luck and struggling to make ends meet. One day, he encounters a group of homeless children, or “waifs and strays,” who are living on the streets. Moved by their plight, Alec takes it upon himself to care for the children and provide them with food and shelter.

As the story unfolds, we see Alec’s relationship with the children evolve and deepen. He becomes a father figure to them, teaching them valuable life skills and instilling in them a sense of hope and purpose. Through his interactions with the children, Alec finds renewed meaning and purpose in his own life.

One of the themes that runs throughout the story is the power of human connection and the importance of compassion and empathy. O. Henry uses his signature wit and humor to explore these themes, and the story’s surprise ending adds an extra layer of depth and meaning.

Overall, “Waifs and Strays” is a touching and poignant tale that reminds us of the humanity and kindness that can be found even in the most challenging of circumstances. Through his portrayal of Alec and the children he cares for, O. Henry invites us to reflect on our own capacity for empathy and compassion, and to consider the ways in which we can make a positive difference in the lives of those around us.


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