He stroked its sides as gently as though the fawn were a china deer and he might break it. Its skin was very soft. It was sleek and clean and had a sweet scent of grass. He rose slowly and lifted the fawn from the ground. Its legs hung limply. They were surprisingly long and he had to hoist the fawn as high as possible under his arm.
He was afraid that it might kick and bleat at sight and smell of its mother. He skirted the clearing and pushed his way into the thicket. It was difficult to fight through with his burden. The fawn’s legs caught in the bushes and he could not lift his own with freedom. He tried to shield its face from prickling vines. Its head bobbed with his stride. His heart thumped with the marvel of its acceptance of him. He reached the trail and walked as fast as he could until he came to the intersection with the road home. He stopped to rest and set the fawn down on its dangling legs. It wavered on them. It looked at him and bleated.
Jody handled the fawn with care, as if it were a breakable clay deer. 'China deer' refers to clay deer in this context. The fawn's skin was silky, smooth, and shiny, and it smelled like grass. He rose slowly from the ground and carefully raised the fawn. Jody had to lift the fawn as high as he could under his arm since the fawn's legs were so lengthy. Jody was concerned that the fawn might kick and bleat if it saw or smelled its mother (carcass). Jody didn't want the fawn to see his mother's body, so he made his way through the brush, avoiding the clearing.
As Jody was a little boy, it was difficult for him to continue with the fawn's burden on his arms. While they were walking, the fawn's legs became tangled in the bush, and he couldn't move. Jody tried to keep the fawn's face safe from the thorns. His head bobbed with each step he took. His pulse raced with the wonder of the fawn's acceptance of him. He arrived at the path and went as quickly as he could till he reached the crossroads of the road leading back to his house. He came to a complete stop and rested the fawn on its hind legs. It swayed gently on Jody's hind legs, bleating and staring blankly at him.
Meaning of difficult words:
|Sleek||Smooth and shiny|
|Bleat||The sound of a lamb|
|Stroke||A light, gentle touch|
|Thump||To beat strongly|
|Stride||A long step|
National Council of Educational Research and Training (2008). Honeydew. This is Jody's Fawn - Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings (pp. 86-93). Published at the Publication Division by the Secretary, National Council of Educational Research and Training, Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi.