(NCERT TEXTBOOK QUESTIONS SOLVED)
Thinking About the Poem (Page 47)
In pairs, attempt the following questions.
Q1. Why does the poet say, “I would not intrude on him”? Why doesn’t he offer him money to buy another ball?
Ans. The poet doesn’t want to indulge in any kind of sermonising. Nor does he want to impose his views on him. He even doesn’t want to console him by saying that his loss is rather very small. Nor does he want to suggest that many more balls can be easily bought with money replacing the lost ball.
Q2. ” staring down/AU his young days into the harbour where/His ball went…’ Do you think the boy has had the ball for a long time? Is it linked to the memories of days when he played with it?
Ans. Actually, the loss of ball here stands for the loss of his childhood. Like the ball fell into the water and lost forever, his childhood has been lost in the harbour of life. It seems that the boy is inconsolable as he has kept the ball for a long time. The loss is linked to the memory of days when he played with it.
Q3. What does “in the world of possessions” mean?
Ans. This physical world is the world of possession. Buying, owning, possessing and even grabbing material things has become the only aim of the people. People have a tendency to amass wealth and material of comfort and luxury. But no wealth can compensate the emotional loss or internal agony that a person suffers from within.
Q4. Do you think the boy has lost anything earlier? Pick out the words that suggest the answer.
Ans. Yes, before the loss of the ball, the boy has lost something earlier too. And this loss can’t be compensated. It is the loss of his childhood that will never come back again. The line: `… staring down all his young days into the harbour …’ reveals his sense of loss.
Q5. What does the poet say the boy is learning from the loss of the ball? Try to explain this in your own words.
Ans. Like every sensible grew up person, the boy is also learning to know the nature of the loss. He is learning that such balls will continue to be bought and lost again and again. He must not weep over it. Rather, he should move ahead forgetting the loss of his ball or the loss of his childhood.
Q6. Have you ever lost something you liked very much? Write a paragraph describing how you felt then, and saying whether — and how — you got over your loss.
Ans. Yes, I am also like the boy in the poem. Like him, I have lost so many things. And who doesn’t? Getting and losing things is natural law. I lost my habitat — the village I was born in when my parents shifted to Delhi. I lost my childhood friends. Those sprawling green fields, ponds and canals which were a part of my life once, have been lost forever. Never will I go to live there and see them again. And my loss is not very much different from the loss of the boy. Both of us have lost one thing in common — the loss of our childhood. However, everyone has to understand the nature of the loss. Everyone has to move ahead forgetting what losses he suffered in the past. This is what life is all about. And I am not different from the boy or every man of the world who has to learn to take gains and losses in his stride.