A Photograph Class 11 Extract Questions and Answers

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A Photograph Class 11 Extract Questions and Answers

                                                        By- Shirley Toulson

Read the stanza carefully and answer the questions that follow :

The cardboard shows me how it was

When the two girl cousins went paddling,

Each one holding one of my mother’s hands

And she the big girl—some twelve years or so.


cardboardthe instant photo that comes out of the camera. It has the hard base of a cardboard; how it wasthe situation at that time; paddlingwalking with short steps on water, propelling a small boat for sport on water (पैर से चलाई जाने वाली नाव),संभलकर पानी में चल रही थी; holdingथामे हुए; big girlthe mother of  the poetess, was then only twelve years old.

कवयित्री एक पुरानी फोटो देख रही है जब उसकी माँ अविवाहित थी, 12 वर्ष की थी I वह अपनी दो छोटी चचेरी बहनों के साथ समुद्रतट पर सैर करने गई थी; वहाँ वे उथले पानी में संभल-संभलकर चल रही थी I  कवयित्री की माँ उन तीनों में सबसे बड़ी आयु की थी, बारह वर्ष की I


 (i)  What does the word ‘cardboard’ denote in the poem? Why has this word been used?

 (ii) Who were the three girls captured in the photograph?

 (iii) Where had they gone for outing/paddling?


 (i)  The word ‘cardboard’ denotes the instant photo or snapshot that is pasted on cardboard in the photo frame.

 (ii)  The three girls captured in the photograph were the mother of the poetess who was not married then, and her two cousins—Betty and Dolly.

 (iii)  They had gone out for a sea holiday. They were photographed on the sea beach.

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All three stood still to smile through their hair

At the uncle with the camera. A sweet face,

My mother’s, that was before I was born.

And the sea, which appears to have changed less,

Washed their terribly transient feet.


all threethe poetess’ mother and her two cousins; stillmotionless; smile through their hairwith some hair strands falling over their eyes and face; a sweet facethe mother of the yet-unborn poetess looked charming with her innocent face; changed lessthe sea over the years hasn’t changed at all or very little; washedtouched, पखार रहा था ; terriblygreatly, at fast speed; transientunsteady, moving,चंचल I

वे तीनों लड़कियाँ कवयित्री की माँ जो उस समय मात्र 12 वर्ष की थी तथा अविवाहित थी तथा उसकी दो मौसेरी बहनें, खड़ी होकर चेहरे पर लटके कुछ बालों के पीछे से मुस्कुरा रही थी I सामने उनके चाचा कैमरा लिए फोटो खींच रहे थे I  माँ का चेहरा अति सुन्दर था I यह बात उस समय की है जब कवयित्री का जन्म नहीं हुआ था और समुद्र की लहरें उन तीनों के चंचल, अस्थिर पैरों को पखार रही थी लड़कियों के पैरों की तो शक्ल बदल गई, पर समुद्र की लहरों में कोई परिवर्तन नहीं आया है I


  (i)  What does ‘three’ refer to?

  (ii)  When and where was the photograph taken?

  (iii)  Bring out the comparison between the sea and the ‘feet’.


   (i)  The ‘three’ are Betty, Dolly and the mother of the poetess.

   (ii)  The photograph was taken on the sea beach by the uncle.

  (iii)  The sea is unchanging while human feet being washed by the sea waves are fast changing.


Some twenty-thirty—years later

She’d laugh at the snapshot. “See Betty

And Dolly,” she’d say, “and look how they

 dressed us for the beach.”


shethe mother of the poetess; snapshotthe photo; laugh atfinds her dress and appearance funny; Betty and Dollythe two cousins; dressed usput on a casual dress for the outing on the sea beach; beachthe three cousin sisters had gone to the sea beach for an outing or holiday

जब वह फोटो खींची गई थी उसके 20-30 वर्ष पश्चात, माँ अपनी बेटी कवयित्री को फोटो दिखाकर हँस देती है I वह बताती है कि देखो मेरी बहनों बेटटी तथा डॉली ने हम सब को किस प्रकार के अजीब कपड़े पहना दिए थे I (स्वयं को उस भड़कीली वेशभूषा में देखकर माँ को लाजवश हँसी आ जाती है I)


  (i) The poetess’ mother laughed at the snapshot. Why? What did her laugh indicate?

  (ii) When was the snapshot taken?

  (iii) Who had dressed the speaker? What was funny about the dress?


(i) The mother of the poetess was at that time some twelve years old. Now after 20-30 years, the mother cannot help laughing at her own picture in a casual, holiday costume.

(ii) The snapshot was taken on the sea beach by the poetess’ uncle some 20-30 years ago.

(iii) The poetess’ mother had been dressed for the holiday by her two cousins—Betty and Dolly. All the three were dressed in girlish beach dresses.


The sea holiday

Was her past, mine is her laughter. Both wry

With the laboured ease of loss.


sea holidayan outing for pleasure, for merry-making on the sea beach. The three girls were escorted by their uncle who carried a camera to shoot their photos. The photo was some 30 years old. The poetess’ mother showed it to her own daughter, the poetess; was her pastthe sea-holiday represented the mother’s childhood, a long time ago. mine is her laughterthe mother passed away. The poetess on seeing the same photo years after mother’s death feels sad. She misses the mother’s laughter; wrysad, disappointed; boththe photo as well as the poetess; laboured ease of lossboth had suffered the ravages of time and bore the loss. The photo is fading and the poetess’ has learnt to bear the loss of her mother with the passing of time.

जब तीनों बहनें समुद्र तट पर मौज-मस्ती के लिए चाचा के साथ गई थीं, उस घटना को बीते हुए 20-30 वर्ष हो चुके थे I इसलिए वह कवयित्री की माँ के लिए अतीत की बात हो चुकी थी  I पर उस चित्र में अपनी वेशभूषा को देखकर माँ हंस दी थी; उस हंसी को बीते भी अनेक वर्ष हो चुके हैं I वह हँसी अब कवयित्री के लिये अतीत की घटना बन गई है I वह फोटो तथा वह हँसी—दोंनों ही मंद पड़ चुकी हैं I


(i) What is the significance of the ‘sea holiday’ here?

(ii) Explain: The sea holiday was her past, mine is her laughter.

(iii) Who does ‘both’ here refer to?


(i)  The significance of the sea holiday is that the mother was also a girl once and it refers to a happy moment in her life on the sea beach.

(ii)  The mother had seen her photo, taken 20-30 years earlier when she was just twelve years old. So, that photograph denoted her own past. But the poetess who had heard her mother laugh is also bereaved. The mother has passed away, her laughter is also thing of the past for the poetess.

(iii) ‘Both’ here refers to the photograph and the mother’s laughter.


Now she’s been dead nearly as many years

as that girl lived. And of this circumstance

There is nothing to say at all.

Its silence silences.


shethe mother of the poetess. She passed away some 12 years ago; this circumstancethe period after the death of the mother, the loss and grief of the poetess; there is nothing to say at alllife has been dull and eventless after the mother’s death. The void created by her death is slowly becoming less painful. Time which passes silently but steadily weakens old memories of loss and grief.

अब तो माँ को गुजरे हुए भी लगभग उतना ही समय बीत चुका है जितनी बड़ी उस फोटो में दिख रही थी I  उसकी मृत्यु द्वारा हुई क्षति और दुख के बारे में भी अब कहने को क्या रह गया है I  समय ने चुपके से उन पुरानी यादों तथा दुखों को धुंधला कर दिया है I अब उन्हें याद करने से कोई लाभ नहीं I  समय सब दुखों को भुला देता है I


(i) How many years ago had the poetess’s mother died?

(ii) What does ‘this circumstance’ refer to?

(iii) Explain Its silence silences.


(i) It is some 12 years since the poetess’s mother passed away.

(ii) ‘This circumstance’ refers to the death of the mother.

(iii) The mother’s voice has been silenced forever. The photo cannot laugh. The poetess also feels depressed and speechless.

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