Essay about The Scarlet Ibis

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The Scarlet Ibis
JAMES HURST Adapted from: Elements of Literature: Third Course. Austin: Holt, Rinehart and Winston. 2003.

It was in the clove of seasons, summer was dead but autumn had not yet been born, that the ibis lit in the bleeding tree.1 The flower garden was strained with rotting brown magnolia petals and ironweeds grew rank2 amid the purple phlox. The five o'clocks by the chimney still marked time, but the oriole nest in the elm was untenanted and rocked back and forth like an empty cradle. The last graveyard flowers were blooming, and their smell drifted across the cotton field and through every room of our house, speaking softy the names of our dead. It's strange that all this is still so clear to me, now that summer has
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It was I who renamed him. When he crawled, he crawled backwards, as if he were in reverse and couldn't

1 bleeding tree: reference to a certain tree prevalent in the South; the name derives from the fact that the tree emits a milky substance whenever a branch is broken from it. 2 rank: thick and wild. Rank also means “smelly” or “overripe.” 3 caul: a membrane sometimes surrounding the head of a child at birth.

4 5

marquisette: thin, netlike fabric. paalmetto fronds: fanlike leaves of a palm tree. 6 invalid: ill, disabled, or weak and sickly.

change gears. If you

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