About «The Last Leaf »
In my opinion, the message lying behind last leaf’s short story, message that comes through most powerfully is that you should not judge people by their outward appearances or social persona. The story describes the artist that lives beneath, Behrman, as an old drunk who had never found success and hated weakness though he goes out in the middle of a storm to paint a leaf for Johnsy. This self-sacrifice is an interesting point why would he do such a thing earlier in the story he laughed at the idea of counting the leaves. The story does foreshadow him painting the leaf in that he is always talking about the masterpiece he is going to paint and how he is a protector of the two young women that live above him. Now the inference that can be taken from his actions is that he had touched no one with his art, he had no true masterpieces. By painting the last leaf he insured that Johnsy would be affected by his art, even only to get her through her illness. He paints a leaf in the pouring rain just for her and so she would pull through. She realized her foolishness when the leaf had staid and made a complete turnaround. The work done by Behrman saved her life.