Think it Out
1. Does the poem talk of an exclusively personal experience or is it fairly universal?
Ans. The poet’s grouse against or irritation with his son’s behaviour is, in fact, a common feature in every home. It is a universal experience, not a personal one. The father always resents the activities of his grown-up children. The children long and struggle for freedom. The tussle goes on in every home and in every country. Generation gap surfaces in every household.
2. How is the father’s helplessness brought out in the poem?
Ans. The relationship between the father and his son has become sour. They have drifted apart. The father is not only sad but also angry. But he feels helpless. He is ready to patch up with the son, forgive him and bring him back home at any cost. He wonders why the two living in the same house for so long have now become strangers. He is ready to overlook his son’s wasteful habits. He is extending his empty hand to get an excuse to welcome the boy into his old home. But the son looks adamant. Ego problem persists.
3. Identify the phrases and lines that indicate the distance between father and son.
Ans. I do not understand him.
We speak like strangers
There is no sign of understanding in the air.
Yet what he loves I cannot share.
Silence surrounds us.
4. Does the poem have a consistent rhyme scheme?
Ans. Yes, the rhyme scheme in each stanza is a b b a b a.