In The Cay by Theodore Taylor, what does Phillip find when he looks for the fishing poles?

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kathik eNotes educator| Certified Educator

After Timothy dies in The Cay by Theodore Taylor, Phillip buries him and puts stones on his grave to mark it. At first Phillip is angry that Timothy has left him, but then he realizes that the reason Timothy probably died was that he protected Philip from the storm with his body. His anger turns to gratitude, but now he has to figure out how to survive all by himself. Phillip thinks that his vine rope is probably destroyed and that the markers Timothy made on the reef were probably gone, too. He worries about how he will fish without fishing poles. As Phillip is thinking about these things, he remembers that Timothy had told him he put the fishing poles in a "safe place." Phillip begins to search with his hands for the poles.

"I got up and began to run my hands over each palm trunk. On one of them I touched rope. I followed it around to the lee side with my fingers. And there they were! Not two or three, but at least a dozen, lashed together, each with a barbed hook and bolt sinker. They were one more part of the legacy Timothy had left me." (Taylor 115)

Because Timothy had thought ahead, Phillip is able to survive until he is rescued.