Describe the scene in "A Worn Path" when Phoenix Jackson returns home with her present.

"A Worn Path" by Eudora Welty does not describe the scene when Phoenix Jackson returns home with her present, but readers can imagine it. Phoenix would first see that her grandson is well, give him the medicine she went to town for, and then possibly rest a little. When she presents the gift to her grandson, he would be extremely happy and appreciative, and she would be glad that she could brighten his life with the present.

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Since the scene in which Phoenix Jackson returns home with her present is not described in "A Worn Path" by Eudora Welty, we will have to imagine it based on information we can gather from the short story. Welty refers to the present that Phoenix wants to purchase for her grandson in the last few paragraphs of the story. A kind nursing attendant gives her a nickel, and she has already picked up a nickel along the path to the clinic. She expresses herself out loud while she looks at the money in her palm:

"This is what come to me to do," she said. "I going to the store and buy my child a little windmill they sells, made out of paper. He going to find it hard to believe there such a thing in the world. I’ll march myself back where he waiting, holding it straight up in this hand."

A paper windmill seems like it would be a very fragile thing, and we have already followed Phoenix's extremely strenuous trip to town. Now she is proposing to go back the way she came, only this time she would be carefully holding a paper toy all along the way. She would still have to pass through the barbed wire, cross the log over the creek, and make her way through the thorn bushes. If she manages to successfully carry back the toy without damaging it, she will be proud but exhausted.

Additionally, we shouldn't forget the main reason that Phoenix has made the trip. Her grandson's medicine has run out and his throat has started to close up, so she went to get him some more of the "soothing medicine."

Keeping these things in mind, when Phoenix returns home she would probably set the present aside and go see if her grandson is all right. She told the nurse that he was all wrapped up in a quilt while he waited for her. She would then give him the medicine, which is of course the most important thing. After she has done that and seen to his comfort, in her exhaustion she might even forget about the present for a short time, just as she forgot why she came when she arrived at the clinic.

Eventually, though, Phoenix would remember the gift she has brought for her grandson and present it to him. He would be wide-eyed with wonder and gratitude, and Phoenix would be smiling with satisfaction that she could do something like that to make her grandson happy.

Last Updated by eNotes Editorial on
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