The Scarlet Ibis Summary
In “The Scarlet Ibis,” Brother recalls the summer when a scarlet ibis appeared in his family’s garden. This scarlet ibis became a symbol of the narrator's little brother Doodle, a sickly child who dies in a storm that summer.
“The Scarlet Ibis” summary key points:
Brother also remembers the birth of his mentally disabled brother Doodle, which so disappointed him that he planned to kill Doodle until the little boy grinned at him.
Brother becomes Doodle’s caretaker; sometimes kind and sometimes cruel, Brother teaches Doodle to walk out of embarrassment rather than love.
With school approaching, Brother pushes Doodle to learn to run and climb trees. The scarlet ibis, blown off course, dies in his family’s yard, and the saddened Doodle buries it.
- On the way home after a disastrous rowing lesson, Brother deliberately leaves the slower Doodle behind in a storm; he returns to find him dead on the ground like the scarlet ibis.