Scout is being woken up in the middle of the night. What specific sound is she describing? What makes this an effective use of imagery?
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The sounds are that of flames bursting forth from some type of structure. This imagery informs the reader that a disaster has taken hold of one of the neighboring houses, and that the people in the neighborhood were out "scurrying" to help.
Just as the birds know where to go when it rains, I knew when there was trouble in our street. Soft taffeta-like sounds and
muffled scurrying sounds filled me with helpless dread.
To Kill a Mockingbird