Sharon Draper

Copper Sun

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  • Features 42 chapter summaries and 6 sections of expert analysis
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Copper Sun Chapters 36-39 Summary & Analysis

Part Eight: Polly

Chapter 36 Summary: Should We Trust Him?

The three slaves run frantically and “after what seemed like miles… by a shallow river to rest” (235). They help themselves to the food in Clay’s bag, and Tidbit, seeing the bread that his mother had made, cries for her.

“They did not stop for two days, moving even during the day” (237). There is no sign of Clay, but when they are about to cross a shallow river, they see a boy their age on the other side. He calls to Polly, asking who she is, and Amari and Tidbit try to hide. Polly tries to play coy, and the boy seems kind. He notices that she’s “dirty…hungry, and lost” (238). He tells her they aren’t far from Savannah, Georgia and asks her where the others are; he admits he saw the “slave girl. The little boy. The dog” (239). He knows that she is an indentured servant and that Amari and Tidbit are runaways. He tells them that his father would turn them in for the reward money but that he thinks “slavery is stupid” and so is willing to help. They follow him.

He hides them in a barn and then brings them a bit of food: bread, cheese, dried meat and apples. They tell him they’re heading to Fort Mose, and he tells them it’s in Spanish Territory.  He further explains that “runaways are welcome and given their freedom, as long as they promise to swear allegiance to the Spanish king” (243). He agrees to show them “the safest path through the forest after have rested” (244).

In the morning, they are awakened by Nathan’s father. He believes they are trespassers and is looking forward to turning them in. He tells Nathan to lock them in the barn and that he will come to collect them after he’s eaten and taken care of the animals. Once his father is gone, Nathan tells them to hit him with a pitchfork. Polly says she can’t, but Amari swings the pitchfork handle around, striking Nathan on the head, and…

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