An Ominous Baby - A Stephen Crane Story
"An Ominous Baby", which is quite short, is an unexpected Stephen Crane jewel. Crane is best known for three short stories, "The Open Boat", thought by many to be the best short story ever written, "The Blue Hotel", and "The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky". "An Ominous Baby" is perhaps the most unusual of the other ten Crane stories Simply recorded. It deserves to be right up there with the top three. As Simply says, this is not an NFL Power ranking, or a compare and contrast assignment. This is your opportunity to enjoy many of Crane's other illuminating and moving works. The story is mythic with as "A baby was wandering in a strange country" and meets up with another. The first is tough guy type from "the poor district" who sees a "pretty child with fine clothes playing with a toy." The first asks to borrow it and is refused; the tough baby gets upset, grabs the toy, and makes off with it, as "the vandal turned and vanished down a dark side street as in a swallowing cavern." The pretty child will clearly get another. The tough guy baby has had to fled his field of victory, and skulk away. This is one of Crane's most bald and symbolic works of class and economic battle and position. It reveals clearly the forces of realism and naturalism that imbues his writing. Another remarkable and under-appreciated work by Mr. Crane.