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Want To Write Essay On A Worn Path?


A Brief Introduction of A Worn Path by Eudora Welty


The short story "A Worn Path" was written by Eudora Welty. It is a short story regarding an elderly African American woman who undertakes a familiar journey in a rural area to get medicine for her grandson (Welty and Sarcone 1991). The story's main character expresses herself to her surroundings and expresses her pain in her tired bones (Welty and Sarcone 1991).

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Story of A Worn Path


The story follows an elderly African American woman named Phoenix Jackson as she ventures towards a town. The story is set in Natchez, Mississippi, and focuses on the journey of Phoenix along the Natchez Trace, where she encounters obstacles like barbed wire, a large dog, thorny bushes, etc. on her way. She meets a hunter and a lady who was tying the shoes (Welty and Sarcone 1991). The story ends with Phoenix, who arrives at the town, completing her journey. Her reason for getting motivation was that her grandson swallowed lye and damaged his throat from the reaction. Phoenix tells the nurse that the damage to his throat never fully heals, and often his throat begins to swell shut. It was the love of the Old Phoenix for her grandson that resulted in his face the trial of the town journey (Welty and Sarcone 1991).


Summary of A Worn Path


The story is a tale of Phoenix Jackson and her journey through the woods to reach a town. The lady is an elderly African American woman who needs to get medicine for her sick child. During the journey of Phoenix, he encounters various obstacles but continues to pull his way through. Throughout the story, the theme is in the obstacles faced by the character. The obstacles include pride, determination, trials, self-sacrifice, and perseverance, as well as the tribulation. The themes are the ones the author encounters throughout the journey of Phoenix (Welty and Sarcone 1991).

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Outline of A Worn Path


The story starts with the first obstacle that is worth mentioning as well as the journey itself, since the main character, Phoenix, had poor vision and was walking with the help of a crane across a river and climbing a hill. Though Phoenicia was aware of her physical inabilities, she was determined to reach the town and this helped her to not stop and achieve her goal. The lines, "out of my way, all you foxes, owls, beetles, and beetles; keep the big wild hogs out of my path; don’t let none of these..." Phoenix pushes herself through the path with perseverance, although she knew that the path was dangerous (Welty and Sarcone 1991). Her responsibilities were valued by her, as were the obligations to her grandson. She showed inner strength and courage to achieve the goal. However, her strong desire to complete her responsibilities helped her to continue her journey and helped her not give up (Welty and Sarcone 1991).


The second obstacle appeared when Phoenix met a white racist hunter. The hunter was a racist, and he mused over the lady and looked down on her. He said that he knows old-colored people like her who don’t want to miss the Santa Claus in town (Welty and Sarcone 1991). However, Phoenix kept her thoughts to herself and ignored him. Her ignorance showed her determination and inner strength and indicated that she was motivated and focused and did not pay attention to pointless arguments. She had more important things to do that were more important than stopping to argue with the hunter (Welty and Sarcone 1991). Also, she picked up the nickel from the hunter and paid his rudeness back without arguing with him. The most dangerous moment was when the hunter pointed his gun at Phoenix. At this time, Phoenix could have panicked and the situation might have gotten worse, but she chose to be fearless. She shocked the heart by showing her inner strength. Though the hunter tried to discourage her, she continued trying to reach the end of her path (Welty and Sarcone 1991).


Finally, Phoenix was able to get over her barrier and arrive at the hospital to fetch medicine for her grandchild. Through her tribulation, she was about to accomplish her goal. Despite what the doctors said or the nurse recommended, the main duty of the old lady was to take her medicines for her grandson. This continuous dedication showed the amount of love and care she had for her grandson (Welty and Sarcone 1991). She wanted her grandson to get well and her returning to the medicine was the only choice she had. The lady got her inner strength from her grandson, who gave her the motivation that she required strength to achieve her goal. It was the result of all of these that the lady was able to achieve the goal of getting a cue for her grandson, who was ill. Phoenix's decision to not give up on her long adventure though she was facing various obstacles indicates how wisely she overcame the obstacles and endured her goal. The reaction of Phoenix to the obstacles she encountered during the journey showed her strength, determination, and the way she overcame every obstacle. The author emphasized striving goals, and determination throughout the journey (Welty and Sarcone 1991).




In the story, the author, through the lead character Phoenix, gave the message that one needs to overcome the odds against them and be determinant in achieving their goals. There were many forces against Phoenix that the author included in the story to make the adventure of Phoenix end in a victory (Welty and Sarcone 1991). The odds that were discussed in the story were poverty, the journey, and the old age that Phoenix must overcome. The author was able to attract the attention of the readers by making her story look so real. Though many people would have experienced the obstacles faced by Phoenix, the descriptions and the images used by the author create a powerful story that everyone can relate to. Overall, the story was well written and it highlighted the importance of determination and motivation to achieve their goals, even in the face of many obstacles like in the story.

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