How is Doodle's death foreshadowed?  death of doodle

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coachingcorner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the poignant short story 'The Scarlet Ibis' there are two small brothers. One has special physical needs and the other brother doesn't. This brother refuses to accept that his little playmate will never be able to join in with his games in the open freedom of the countryside, so he decides to spend every spare hour teaching him to play and run. Sometimes he teaches him a little too hard and the little boy becomes exhausted. The tired and weary bird which lands on the tree in the yard foreshadows what will happen to Doodle - the Scarlet Ibis drops exhausted from the tree - the shape of his gangly useless legs and the blood red echoing the way poor little Doodle will die. Guilt is an important theme so look for that.

missy575 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Here are some extra ideas as Doodle's death is foreshadowed throughout the entire story.

In the beginning Aunt Nicey said of him "he would live because he was born in a caul and cauls were made from Jesus' nightgown." Follow this with me, the Jesus story is truly about his eventual death. The whole point of Jesus coming to this earth was to die (for forgiveness of sin) according to the Christian tradition.

In the first two pages... these are a sample of words with which the author lays the scene: graveyard, bleeding, empty cradle, names of our dead.

Doodle eventually finds the coffin made for him as a baby.


pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the story, the death of Doodle, the narrator's brother, is foreshadowed very soon before it happens.  It is foreshadowed in the death of the bird -- the scarlet ibis that gives the story its title.

The scarlet ibis has landed in the "bleeding tree" in the narrator's yard.  As the family looks at it, it tumbles from the tree and lands dead at the foot of the tree. A very similar thing will happen to Doodle.

Doodle does not fall from a tree, but he is found under a red bush, just as the bird was under a red tree.  Doodle is red with blood, just as the ibis was red.

Read the study guide:
The Scarlet Ibis

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