Decoding The Symbolism Used in A Worn Path by Eudora Welty

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Today we will be talking about the different literary references used throughout Eudora Welty’s “A Worn Path”. I will explain and decode different techniques used by the author throughout her story. The story is of an old southern African American woman, named Phoenix Jackson, making her way into to town to pick up her grandsons medication from the doctor’s office. But this is no normal old woman. She cannot see and is picking her way with a cane to make her way across a barrage of obstacles. Throughout her journey she comes upon different characters and situations, from these events we will draw our interpretations of the symbolism embedded within the tale.
The first thing I thought about after finishing the story was how routine
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When she arrives at the doctors’ office she is greeted first by a grumpy front desk receptionist, then a nice nurse who is familiar when Phoenix approaches her. The nice nurse assures the front desk receptionist that Phoenix is there to pick up her grandsons medication. As she and the nurse chat, Phoenix’s old age starts to play a factor when she loses her train of thought while the nurse asks on the condition of the grandson. As phoenix walks into town, she asks a random woman on the street to tie her shoe. “Thank you missy. I doesn’t mind asking a nice lady to tie my shoe when I gets on the street”, (A Worn Path, 1280) this could be a continuation of the representation of the child-old woman analogy that I described earlier in the essay. As she finds her way into town, she finds her way to the doctor’s office, she then makes a conversation with the nurse and tells her, “We is the only two left in the world. He suffers and it don’t seem to put him back at all. He got a sweet look. He going to last. He wear a little patch quilt and peep out holding his mouth open like a little bird. I remember so plain now. I not going to forget him again, no, the whole enduring time. I could tell him from all the others to creation” (A Worn Path, 1280). I saw this as a representation of how she felt alone in the world, and how she is going to

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