A Worn Path

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Darrell McWhorter
Professor Ferguson
English Comp 1
February 08, 2013

“A Worn Path”

Eudora Welty’s short story “A Worn Path” offers a wonderful example of a Grandmothers love. A Grandmothers love is the kind of love that can be compared to no other. A kind of selfless love that suffers many conflicts and never strays.

The story opens in a country setting, on a cold December morning, in southwest Mississippi. As Pheonix Jackson, “an old negro woman” taps her cane along the beaten path she hears a rustling in the brush. She says, outta my way, all you foxes, owls, beetles and jack rabbits, coons and wild animals! Keep out from under these feet little bob-whites! Keep the big wild hogs out of my path!

The path ran up a hill. As Pheonix starts to climb the hill she says, “seem like there is chains about my feet, time I get this far.” This is an indication Pheonix has made this trip many times before. Soon she reaches the top of the hill and evaluates her progress so far. “Up through the pines, and down through the oaks,” she said. At the bottom of the hill lies her biggest obstacle yet, a log was laid across a creek.

“Now comes the trial,” said Pheonix. Putting her right foot out, she mounted the log and closed her eyes. Leveling her cane fiercely before her, she began to march across the log. When she opened her eyes she was on the other side. It was here old Pheonix finally took the time to rest. She did not dare close her eyes. After a hallucination of a young boy offering her a piece of marble-cake Pheonix moved on.

When she resumes her journey, she must get down on her hands and knees and crawl under a barbed-wire fence, taking great care not to tear her dress. Pheonix Jackson’s journey continues on through cornfields with dead stalks, and cotton fields with dead stalks. Finally, she arrives at a wagon track, where the walking got...
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