This article interweaves a popular folktale (AT 333), events in the life of the author’s mother, and a dream of an archetypal garden. In the folktale, an old man tricks himself into Heaven by outwitting Death, the Devil, and St. Peter with wishes that St. Peter had granted him. The tale as now told by the author evolved from an interesting folktale into a personal story, as it came to be associated with the mother's struggle to deal with the death of her garden and then to face her own death. These factors continue to provide living energy for an old tale that is entirely relevant today, not as a consciously re-formed "modern" folktale, but as a traditional story that continues to speak in a new voice. The author suggests that this is one way that folktales remain relevant today, both encompassing and transcending personal history.
Stone, Kay. "Inside Out: Folktale and Personal Story." Marvels & Tales 11.1 (1997). Web. <http://digitalcommons.wayne.edu/marvels/vol11/iss1/2>.