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How does Paul learn which horse will win the races and what does Paul do to recieve...

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rebeccaguajardo | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 29, 2007 at 1:13 AM via web

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How does Paul learn which horse will win the races and what does Paul do to recieve his mom's unhappiness about money?

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mvmaurno | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted October 29, 2007 at 2:29 AM (Answer #2)

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Paul perceives that he learns the names of the winners by rocking on his rocking horse violently and concentrating hard on the race.  However, his "luck" in discerning the winners is purely coincidental, and it takes a hard toll on his emotional and physical health.  Yearning for his mom's love and an end to her misery caused by her perceived lack of money (the story suggests that she lives well with attractive surroundings and household help), he strives to be lucky first by riding his toy horse because his mom says that it is better to be lucky than rich because money runs out, but luck will always allow you to have money. However, the boy dies at the end and was far from lucky in life in every sense of the word, but the final lines of the story spoken by the uncle imply he may be luckier in the afterlife: "But poor devil, poor devil, he's best gone out of a life where he rides his rocking-horse to find a winner".

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