"The Ponder Heart" by Joseph Fields & Jerome Chodorov

"The Ponder Heart" is a play by Joseph Fields and Jerome Chodorov based on a novella by Eudora Welty that was published in The New Yorker in 1953.


The play is about Uncle Ponder who marries a backwoods girl, a bad match known to everyone but him. He buys her all the pretty things from advertisements that she wants, electric refrigerator, washer, dishwasher, television, etc - even though they do not have electricity in the home. When she tragically dies from a lightening strike he is accused of murder and is put on trial.

Scene: The action of the play occurs in and around a small town in the south, a few years ago (c1950).

Act 1: The Beulah Hotel
Act 2: The Ponder Hill House
Act 3: The Courthouse


  • Jacob
  • Sarah
  • Mr. Springer
  • Edna Earle Ponder
  • De Yancey Clanahan
  • Big John
  • Narciss
  • Purdel Peacock
  • Bruce Peacock
  • Treva Peacock
  • Johnnie Ree Peacock
  • Mr. Peacock
  • Mrs. Peacock
  • Eloise
  • Uncle Daniel Ponder
  • Dorris R. Gladney
  • Bonnie Dee Ponder
  • Sam
  • Rodney
  • Willie
  • Teacake Magee
  • Judge Waite
  • Dr. Eubanks
  • Truex Bodkin
  • Mrs. Bodkin
  • Al
  • Clyde
  • Clerk
  • Bailiff
  • Foreman

Production History

Date Play Company
Feb 16, 1956 The Ponder Heart
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