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The Representation Of Nature And Essay

1098 words - 5 pages

In Eudora Welty’s “A Worn Path,” Phoenix Jackson is faced with the unpredictability of nature and the uncertainty that she comes across as she travels through the woods and into town. Her primary purpose is to obtain her grandson’s medicine, and in order to do so, she must take a path through the woods. Even though she is certain that she will arrive safely to where she is going, she knows that there will be some difficulties ahead of her. Phoenix’s journey on the path she takes symbolizes the journey of one’s life through the path he or she takes.
Phoenix Jackson is a force within nature which ceases to stop. Her name gives her that very quality. A phoenix is a mythical bird that is ...view middle of the document...

Phoenix Jackson symbolizes the spirit of perseverance that one has when faced with a long and at times difficult journey. At the start of her journey, she tells all the animals she may encounter to stay out of her way as she passes through the woods, “Don’t let none of those [wild animals] come running my direction. I got a long way” (261). While walking down the side of the hill, her dress catches in a thorny bush, “Thorns, you doing your appointed work. Never want to let folks pass” (260). She takes time to carefully release her dress without ripping it (260). “Now here comes the trial,” she says aloud to herself as she reaches the bottom of the hill where she must cross a creek with a log laying across it. When she is safely on the other side, she takes a note that she is not as old as she thought (260). This shows that Phoenix is someone who will not give up as easily as some would think. She takes a short break, then she carefully works her way through a barbed wire fence; “she could not pay for having her arm or leg sawed off if she got caught fast where she was” (260). This is another one of the difficult parts of Phoenix’s journey. She could have stopped right at the creek, but she did not. She was determined to conquer every obstacle along her path.
Nature represents the cruelties and hardships in life that people face daily. Phoenix traveled “up through pines” and “down through oaks” (260). Going uphill through pines and then downhill through oaks foreshadows that there will be difficulties at the beginning and through the journey, but there will also be simpler times throughout as well, especially at the end of the journey. She came across a field of dead cotton and a field of dead corn, where there was no clearly defined path (261). “Through the maze now,” she said aloud to herself (261). Here, Phoenix could have easily...

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