Monday, August 1, 2011
P’u Sungling (1630-1715)
Summary: Tao, a young scholar, does not believe in ghosts. So during the summer he decides to live in a mansion on the outskirts of town where he can escape the flies and the heat. The trouble is that the mansion is haunted and three care-takers have died. Their deaths were not accidents.
No matter. Tao settles in and is soon bothered by two pretty female ghosts. Autumn Mien is the older ghost (20years old) and Jojo, the younger (17 years old). After some miscommunication, they help him in his studies and he becomes their teacher—and he falls in love with them—both.
The upshot of the story is that they are both restored as human beings to their families through the intercession of a Taoist priest. And Autumn-Mien as the older becomes Tao’s wife and Jojo becomes his concubine. Apparently a normal relationship.
Famous Chinese Short Stories. Re-told by Lin Yutang. New York: The Pocket Library. 1954.