How It Should Have Ended (HISHE)
Have you ever read the classic children’s story “The Giving Tree” by Shel Silverstein? I’ve always been disturbed that the tree sacrifices itself to a greedy old man — so I rewrote the ending and drew new pictures. Call it: The Giving Tree Sequel or The Giving Tree Redux. The last 4 pages pictured here are my new ending. I also matched the layout, font and typesetting exactly to the original book.
Last seen the old man is sitting on the stump of the tree looking forlorn. The tree is happy to see his old friend and offer him a place to sit; that is all the tree has left to give. But, presumably, the man is unhappier than ever after having taken the tree’s friendship for granted and realizing he has killed the tree with his greed. Giving credit to the original author, Shel Silverstein, perhaps the young readers are meant to learn to stop being so greedy and destructive, yet I wonder why the tree is still happy? And the man seems little changed by his actions, so there is not much character growth there.
Alternate ending to The Giving Tree
What if instead of the tree being reduced to a stump, the cycle of life continues with a lesson conveyed to the next generation, both a grandson and an apple sapling? Please see my pictures and words above.
Let me know how you think the Giving Tree should have ended in the comments below.