The Recurring Dream
The “Recurring Dream” is a supernatural story that particularly centers round a strange dream, which Kim was frequently haunted by. Kimberly Clark, the protagonist, has undergone a serious problem which she had the same sort of dream time and again. She is a young and beautiful woman of twenty-five who used to live in London and worked in a large company. She keeps a good position in the office however she has a problem. She sees a mysterious and frightening dream almost every night. In the dream, she finds herself walking on a village lane that is surrounded by white fences on both sides of it. At the end of the lane there is a little hill where on the top a beautiful cottage is located. She enters inside the house and finds in an old man with white hair and white beards fallen asleep. When she goes near him he wakes up and looks at her. But when she tries to speak with him she wakes up and finds herself in her bed in London.
The recurring dream troubles her badly. So, she shares her problem with her roommate Janet Wilson. One day Janet went to her parents’ farm for a few days with Kim to keep Kim free from her problem. On the way Kim falls asleep and has the same dream. She was surprised to see the same place in front of her that she usually sees in her dream. She asks Janet to stop the car and she gets out of it. She sees the same lane, hill and cottage of her dream. As in the dream, she goes towards the house. There she sees assign of “FOR SALE” in front of the door.
As in the dream she knocks at the door and the same old man with white hair and white beard opens the door but he is afraid to see her. So, he immediately closes the door. Kim again requests him to open the door and when he opens it she asks him if the house is on sale. The man replied positively and says that a ghost has haunted the house every night. Then Kim asks him who the ghost is? The old man replies “It is you” then he closes the door.
The Lost Doll
Carmen was the only child of Roberto and Rosa Soto. She was beautiful, bright and loving child. However she was sick from the day of her birth. When she was four, she fell sick seriously and died. A few days after the funeral ceremony, Rosa gave away Carmen’s playthings and clothes to a priest of another village so that she couldn’t see them time and again. She thought that she wouldn’t have another child as she was told at the time of Carmen’s birth. When Roberto knew about it, he became very unhappy because he was hopeful that they would have another child. He asked about her the little dolly which Carmen always carried with her. Rosa said that she didn’t give it away. Then they searched everywhere in the house as well asked the villagers too but they couldn’t find it.
However they soon forgot about the lost doll because Rosa became pregnant. On the first anniversary of the death of Carmen, Rosa gave birth to another child. Roberto and Rosa became very happy. She was named Evangelina, which meant “good news”. When Evangelina grew she looked very much similar to her sister Carmen. But she was healthy girl. When she was about four, she told her mother that she had been sick a long time ago. She also told her aunt that she had a little, beautiful doll with blue eyes and red dress. She had buried it under a tree in the yard. She requested her mother to dig up the doll. When Rosa dug up the ground, she found the lost doll. She looked surprised, shocked and sick because it was difficult for her to believe. Evangelina also said that when she was sick, the nice man came and helped her to bury that doll under the tree.
The story accounts the supernatural significance regarding its particular focus on the concept of reincarnation. When Evangelina was born and grown up, she looked very much similar to that of Carmen’s actions, characters, behaviors and other many things were very much similar. The priest said that God healed Carmen and sent her back in the form of healthy Evangelina. Though Rosa did not believe that her newly born child as the reincarnation of Carmen but she could not reject the mysterious fact towards the end of the story. When Evangelina reported everything about past and about her doll, Rosa could say nothing anymore.
The House Call
“The House Call” is a story from Germany that basically concentrates upon the mysterious arrival of the spirit of a young girl to make a call to the doctor for the treatment of her mother who was suffering from pneumonia for several days. Dr. Brawn, the protagonist of this story, is identified as the famous surgeon in his locality. The day after the Christmas of 1903, he was sitting alone in his dining room in about 9:30 p.m. he was quite tired even unable to take his evening meal due to hard surgery, which he performed on his particular day. He was preparing report about his surgical works and putting his head down the table and dozing. He suddenly woke up when he heard the doorbell. After sometime, he came to know that he had a patient to see. In fact it was a young girl who had come to call the doctor for her mother. Despite his exertion, Braun decided to follow her up to her home and see her mother. The doctor tried to catch her up on the way so that he could have asked many questions related to her mother and about herself. The doctor was old enough to walk on the speed as the girl was making a rush towards her home. Anyway the doctor managed to follow her till he reached at her old apartment where a woman seemed to be lying on the bed.
The doctor checked her up and found that she was suffering from pneumonia. He provided her some medicine that comforted the woman because she was the same woman who once worked in the same hospital as the maintenance staff. The doctor knew that Elda had gone to stay at her brother’s house in the village. The woman further added that she came back just three months ago after her only child Adelheid died. Dr. Braun was very surprised because the very child had been to the doctor to make a call. The woman further showed some of her belongings to revive her memory in her old and least furnished apartment. The ragged shawl and tattered shoes shown to doctor by her mother made him more confused and serious because he had seen the girl in the same dress. When he looked at Elda he found her asleep and returned with his black bag on his hand.
Armando Gonzalez was a very hard-working man. After he and his wife worked for twenty years, they were able to save 50,000 pesos in a large bank of Mexico City. With a dream of buying a new house Armando went to the bank to withdraw the money as per the suggestion of the agent who wanted the payment in cash. The cashier, in the bank counted the money in a loud voice. Armando thought that everyone knows how much money he had.
The people in the bank began to look at Armando because he had won his hat on backward. But he thought that they were looking at him for his money. A fat man persistently stared at him on account of the way he had worn the hat. When Armando came to the street to wait for the bus, he saw the fat man next to him. He suspected that the fat man was going to rob him, consequently his body began to shake and his heart started beating faster. Armando was waiting for the bus. When the fat man looked at his pocket, Armando thought that he was checking his pistol. In this way the situation made him quite nervous.
When the bus came, Armando got on the bus and sat on the seat behind the driver he found the same man sitting behind him. Armando’s whole dream of buying the new house was in his pocket. He was not happy because he thought that someone would easily cease his dream. Moreover, he saw three boys talking to the fat man that made him truly skeptic, whether they were the helpers of the fat man. Armando got up the bus at the next station from the front door but after sometime the boys also got off from the back door. Armando was sure that they were going to rob him. So, he cried begging help from the bystanders. Then he ran as fast as he could. The boys simply thought that he might have undergone some serious problem so they ran after him for his help. Armando fell in the ground many ground many times. Eventually, the boys meet him, who was weeping like a child and requested not to rob him. He said that he was honest and he had earned that money in fair way through hard work. However when he knew that they were not robbers, he felt shamed. He returned to the bus stop with the boys feeling easy and happy.
The Loving Mother
‘The Loving Mother’ is a story that reveals the everlasting love of a mother to her baby even after her death. It particularly gives central focus round the mysterious arrival of a woman at a pharmacist’s usually at midnight. Shoji Sakota, the protagonist of this story undergoes an unseen fear when he received the frequent visit in the same time almost every night. Sakota was a Japanese pharmacist who lived a lonely life since his wife had died many years before. One stormy winter night, when he was preparing the annual business report, someone knocked at the door. At first he didn’t pay much attention towards the knock thinking that whoever came there would see the drugstore closed and return back. Second time also he heard the knock at the door and thought that the wind was making the sound. The frequency of knock grew that compelled him to think whether he might have some urgent house call. He looked outside from the window quietly and saw there a woman standing and speaking in a trembling voice. He suspected her and thought whether it might be her trick to rob him. But her continuous pleads made him open the door. The woman looked not like a normal woman. She was wearing a torn out gown and her hair was not arranged. She asked Sakota for an ame on a stick stick. Sakota was surprised when he knew about her request because he thought that she would ask for the medicine.
The woman came to the shop in the following nights regularly with same request at the same time. With a view to have detail study about a woman, he called his friend who was a photographer by profession. They managed to take photos of that woman secretly. But, when the film was developed, there was no sign of the woman except the things in the drugstore. The mystery remained so intense that ultimately forced them to follow her up to her bedroom. They followed on her way back to her home and they became able to find the same woman lying beside her child who was enjoying the ame on a stick, which she brought from Shoji Sakota. When Mr. Sakota saw her sleeping instantly, he thought it was merely a kind of pretension. The moment he touched her with his fingers he became sure that she had been dead for many days.
In this story, the spirit of a loving mother visited Mr. Sakota’s pharmacy in order to buy ame on a stick mostly preferred by her child. Though the mother is dead, her spirit shows an infinite love to her child who is reported to have been sick for many days. Her death was quite unknown to others. Moreover, there was nobody to look after her.
My Heart Leaps Up When I Behold
‘My Heart Leaps Up When I Behold’ is a beautiful poem composed by a famous English romantic poet William Wordsworth. The poet is a great lover of nature as well as true worshiper of God and nature. In this poem, the poet recollects (remembers) the experiences of his childhood days and gives his emotion and feeling a meaning that the poet wants continuity of life and nature. For him, nature is both God and religion. In this poem, he not only presents the reality of human life but also shows a deep respect to God and religion wishing his days to be bound each to each by natural piety.
The poet says that he becomes very happy to see the nature going on in the same way. So, he says that his heart leaps up with great happiness or joy when he sees a beautiful rainbow in the sky. The colourful rainbow symbolizes the continuity of the nature and colourful human life. The rainbow was there in the sky when the poet was born and he has now become a matured man. He also wants the rainbow to be in the sky when he has become a matured man. He also wants the rainbow to be the same in future. He says that present is the result of the past and future will be the result of the present. In this way the poet shows that time and nature are ongoing phenomena of universe. If there is any break in this continuation the poet wants to die. The poet also says that both are inevitable.
The poet presents his main idea of the poem through the paradoxical line “The Child (past) is the father (present) of the future.” The poet means to say that human life begins from childhood. A man can’t be a father without being a child. According to the poet, father means from whom the creation of new generation takes place. It is the child from whom the manhood begins. Thus the child is really the father of man. Yesterday’s child is today’s man (father) and today’s child is tomorrow’s father. The poet also says that nature is God, religion and source of life and inspiration. He worships, loves and respects the nature. He also wishes the continuation of time (past, present and future) in the nature in the same way.
Speaking Of Children
‘Speaking of Children’ is an essay by Barbara Holland in which she delightfully and critically examines the idea of having more than one child and the consequent expenses of parents. The entire essay centers round the issue of having a single child is far better than to have money. The essayist goes on arguing the possible difficulties and disasters which the parents have it bear if a house is filled with many children. She has raised the most burning issue of overpopulation that has further generated series of challenges and risks to the living beings of the present world.
She begins this essay with a humble statement ‘one child is an appendage and more than one is a way of life’. The statement genuinely implies that single child like our body and we can attach him or her in our body and we can carry wherever we go or whatever our circumstances may be. But having many children in the house is certainly a matter of burden. It is obvious that it is quite hard for the parents to provide proper care and affection equally for their all children. Consequently the children are abided from good education, proper health care and other facilities, which are the key components for the overall development of children’s personality. Moreover they disturb the privacy between husband and wife without letting them chances of private talk related to their job, income, business and their experiences of their duty and so on. In a sense they need to be worried all the time for their future prospects as well as to satisfy their unsuitable demands of hunger and enjoyment. The essayist minutely examines some other dark sides in this regard like they make their house dirty, create unnecessary noise, and make wounds in their body, which ultimately goes in the hands of parents.
Eventually, the essayist makes an appeal to the readers so as to make us aware of in time from committing such blunder. She strongly suggests us to have a single child for the happiness and prosperity of family life. Every details and illustrations are quite prescriptive in nature that intends us to be aware of such mistakes. The essay is quite funny, humorous, informative in quality and filled with various fragments.
Look At A Teacup
The essay ‘Look At A Teacup’, written by Patricia Hampel, shows how a simple writing helps in finding out great events. It is about the history of writer’s mother in a delicate teacup. The two major themes of this essay are relationship between a mother and her daughter and a connection between the past generation and present generation. Both these things are represented by a teacup.
The writer’s mother was married in the year 1939, the beginning of the Second World War. The same year she bought the teacups as gifts that were later given to the daughter. Hampel sees a connection between herself and her mother. The teacup reminds her of her mother’s history because her mother bought it in 1939. Through the cup the mother transfers the culture and history of her time to the daughter. So, the cup is historical memory only. It was made in Czechoslovakia, which was taken over and destroyed by the armies of Adolf Hitler.
The essay associates and removes the objective description and subjective feeling of author and teacup. The author can express lots of feeling and ideas making the teacup as a medium. She tries to compare the falling of flower in the teacup as destruction of beauty due to falling bombs. There was also cultural and social degradation. The style of this essay is stream of consciousness. So, the reader feels somehow puzzled to track down the plot of the essay. She expresses all her feelings try to compete each other. So, some sentences are fragmented. Logically they do not follow each other. The writing is beautifully decorated but the meanings are deviated.
There is symbolic meaning of the things. ‘Falling flowers’ implies the degrading situation and ‘teacups’ were human rituals and arts. Certainly the essayist refers the fall and break of culture. ‘Falling bodies’ were dying people in the war and ‘beds’ have meaning of the battlefield where the falling bodies lay. ‘The falling of bombs onto women’ means the tragic fate of these women. They had the disturbed married life. Fates of women were accursed by the war and their destiny was darkened by the war and their destiny. ‘Falling countries’ refers to the degradation of humanity, peace, progress, brotherhood, culture, etc. of the countries involved in the war. This essay presents the reality of war and shows the real picture of the world caused by the destruction due to war.
A Worn Path
‘A Worn Path’ is a story about an old black woman named Phoenix, who is courageous and endangers her life to get the medicine for her grandson, who is suffering from extreme throat pain. Literally speaking, the story is the story of journey of old woman who walks towards the city on the cold winter day. She is taking a long trip to the city to visit the hospital and bring some medicine for her grandson. This is not the first time she is going to the city. She goes there frequently for the medicine. She loves her grandson so much that she faces many trouble and obstacle on the long trip.
This story is the live description of the journey of the old Negro woman. The writer presents live description of the real character so that the events of that story seem convincing. Phoenix comes up against several troubles between the valley and wagon track. She has to walk across thorny bushes and deep woods. She has to cross a river and even climb a steep hill. Her dress is caught and scratched by thorns. But, she frees herself with hard struggle. She has to creep and crawl under the barbed wire. She is even disturbed by the scarecrow, which she thinks to be a ghost. Later, she falls into a ditch when she tries to protect from the black dog. In spite of all these difficulties, she is successful to reach her destination.
It is quite strange to the reader that she keeps talking to herself because she is alone on the way. Also, she is very old and talking alone has because her habit. By talking to herself, she tries to forget hardships and troubles that come on her way. Monologues add a lot to the total portrait of her habits, nature and attitude. Through the monologue we can read her mind. From her monologue she seems weak, kind-hearted and loving woman. She is the woman who is afraid of even small things. But, she finds way to remove her obstacles. She is uneducated and knows very little about the outside world. She has lots of love for her grandson but despite of her weakness she is determined woman who frees all the challenges of the life. Her monologues add a lot to the total portrait of her.
Phoenix can be compared to the bird Phoenix in Egyptian mythology, which burns itself, changes into ashes and again recreates new life. In every obstacle, Phoenix seems to be losing hope such as burning of Phoenix bird into ashes. Later, when she gets victory over the obstacles, she seems to be regaining her hope such as recreation of life of Phoenix from ashes.
She is a very poor woman. When she sees the nickel dropped from a white man, she thinks she can do something with that money. Her poverty drives her to pick up that nickel. She does this theft jus for good reason. She wants to buy paper windmill for her grandson as a surprise gift on the occasion of Christmas Day.
At last, she is able to get success in her aim. In spite of her old age, she proves herself to be a courageous and determined woman. Being simple and uneducated lady also, she overpowers all the obstacles on her way due to her deep love for her grandson.
The Three Days Blow
“ The Three Days Blow” is a plot less story in a dramatic way. Two friends Nick and Bill meet at Bill’s cottage. The weather is shown violent. There is rain and storm. So, this is an ideal situation to stay inside home. They make fire, burn lots of logs and make themselves warm. They drink different alcohol and go on talking about different topics such as books, fishing, girlfriend, hunting, etc. without any plot, the story ends. The topics of the talk change suddenly from one subject to another. There is no third character. We know a lot about the subject, which go through their conversation only. Bill and Nick have no specific purpose of meetings or talking. The weather creates situation for them. This keeps them inside when they talk about different topics. Hemingway creates situation of drinking so that they can reveal their feelings. The scene moves forward excluding the opening exposition. He talks about the weather- rainfall, storm, wind, surf, etc. suddenly, he begins to have different sorts of drinks and talk about games of baseball. The topic of their talk shifts to books and writer. They slowly get drunk and talk about their habits. Then, they talk about nick’s girlfriend. This is the climax of the story. The theme of this scene lastly talks about hunting and go to.
When we read the drama, this scene opens one by one. The title of the story says something symbolically. Weather doesn’t remain same always. Even a single day we can experience the fluctuation of weather. This is the principle of nature. Weather is dynamic; it doesn’t remain constant all the time. Just like weather, mental conflict of tension of suffering is presented in several scenes or sequence of events. In the beginning scene, nick looks calm but with the movement of different scenes, his calm face changes.
The setting of this story goes to be open with a nice scene. Nick is presented in the beginning on the way. He is going up to the village. Natural presentation is also seen. There is an orchard and we see the blowing of air, breeze that is the first autumn storm. Nick picks up an apple and keeps it in his pocket. The two characters Nick and Bill are presented inside the house. They have their personal talk. The story begins with the scene of woods, lakes, kitchen, sitting room, dining room etc. In the beginning Nick is seen and the story ends with guns. They go down where Bill’s father was hunting. There are similar events between the whether and sequence of events of “The Three Days Blow”. There is conflict in the character Nick. He is getting confused about his girl friend Marjorie. He wants to meet her again but Bill makes him leave her. He wants to marry her although her mother is bad. So the conflicts are similar. There is union in both weather hand love of Nick with Marjorie. Weather becomes fair and love also becomes negotiable.
The story is dramatic because there are characters and dialogues and unity of time and place. There are two characters Nick and Bill who have continuous dialogues like in the drama. The setting of the story is also like a drama. There is internal and external scene. These scenes can be converted into the drama. They just talk about some little subject that is the subject matter of both drama and story. These story deals with love. Marjorie’s mother can be presented as an antagonist, Nick as a protagonist and Bill as an inciting force. So the story is dramatic.
The three-day blow and Nick’s mental condition are related. Marjorie’s business is fundamental subject of the story. Nick, though he is not enjoyed with her, is going to get married. Because of her mother, he breaks relation from Marjorie, his beloved. After different kinds of talks Bill and Nick’s conversations is concentrated. Marjorie’s business has broken his relation with her easily. So moment from Nick’s conflicts of love affairs, through suffering and separation to reconciliation ends. Thus Marjorie’s business is like a three day below that comes and disappears itself. Three-day blow comes, threatens and finally goes away. In the same way, conflict of love appears and disappears with despair and again with hope.
The Marjorie’s business is fundamental subject of this story. Nick, though he was not engaged with her, was going to get married. Because of her mother he broke relation from Marjorie, his beloved. His mother was very terrible. To marry her meant he would have married the whole family her mother.
Though the character Bill, the writer seems to be giving practical message. Nick seems to be emotional but Bill is practical. Nick is ready to accept Marjorie although her mother was bad. He really loves her and ready to accept her. His life can be compared with the storm. The moment when he met Marjorie and he left her due to unfavorable situation that moment is just like a violent storm, which doesn’t last for long time in the nature. Bill is practical. He says Nick to forget all the events related with Marjorie and lead his wife towards new direction. Human life is a mixture of sorrow and happiness. If any disastrous event comes in our life also, we should control our emotion and lead our life towards new phase and time happily. We should have capacity to adjust with all the fluctuations that come in our life.
The Poplar Field
Hemingway is a romantic poet. Like his other literary works, this is also a romantic poem representing nature. He describes the difference in the environment and natural beauty before and after the poplar trees are fallen down. With example of poplar trees, the poet wants to show the real phase of human life according to rule of nature.
The poplars are cut down which used to grow along the Ouse River. The river doesn’t reflect the beautiful shadows of these trees. The musical environment has been ruined now. The leaves don’t blow the air and sing a song in happy mood. There are also no shades. These trees were once in the field but now they have become seats. Not only the environment has been ruined but there is also destruction of the blackbird’s habitat. The bird used to add charm in that beautiful environment by its different types of melodious songs. It has transferred its nest to the hazel trees to get shelter and shade.
The poet thinks that his days too are passing away fast and should be lying down like those poplars. He thinks that he will be in the tomb before such grove will grow again. Such scenes make him think deeply about human lives. He understands that trees are perishable like the woods. Such events inspire him to think about the perishable nature of human joys and our enjoyment is short when our lives are so short. Man is the most perishable thing in the world and will live shorter than now in the future.
The poem deals with the personal feeling according to the principle of romanticism. Romantic writers don’t write care the common interest so they express their personal emotions using singular pronoun ‘I’. So, in this poem we see the first person instead of others. Personal approach makes the expression stronger and powerful.
The poem compares the life cycle of poplar and the human life. Poplar grows up; it produces branches, leaves, etc. it makes shades and pillars. It lies down and perishes in the ground. Our lives also grow and perish. Human life is also similar to the natural life. However, the life of nature or tree passes through time. The human life is also the same. So, our enjoyment goes away from the life. As human life is not certain, we should live our life, every moment of life enjoying a lot and with great happiness. We cannot take these enjoyable moments with us after our death. We can take only the physical body, which we get from the nature. Our pleasures and enjoyments all die before our death.
The poem is remarkable for its celebration of the rural and its nostalgic tone. (Nostalgic poems are reminiscences of past life of a writer, is also part of autobiography). The poet recollects the scene of the poplar trees, which he used to enjoy the whispering sound of the tree columns. Winds used to play and sing in the leaves. Rivers reflect the image of the trees beautifully. Birds have shifted to other places. Melody has disappeared. Now he has no pleasures in these poplar trees. After 12 years he sees the field and feels everything dead by depletion.
The poet has given indirect suggestion to the readers to protect the natural vegetation. He warns us that if we won’t protect the green forests now only, we will die before age. We should understand that we are living in this world just due to nature. We are just the products of nature and one day we have to surrender ourselves in the lap of nature. The poet has written this poem in defense of natural conservation because he thinks that we get some important human aspects from the trees. The poplars represent the forest. When we preserve the trees we can get shades and pillars for houses. Birds live there and they sing some melodious songs, which make our lives joyful. The poet compares the tree with human life and says our lives are more perishable than the trees. We are destroyed by the nature. So we should defend the nature.
The Nightmare Life Without Fuel
“The Nightmare Life Without Fuel” is an essay, which depicts the life of this world in coming future when the fuel resources will have reduced from their source. The main thrust of this essay is: what is going to happen if we do not conserve the world’s natural resources. Asimov focuses on a specific problem that will arise by the lack of fuels. This whole world is run by different resources such as petrol, diesel, water, wood, etc. We cannot imagine this world without the use of fuel. In comparison to the past days, we are now facing the problem of scarcity of fuel resources. Earlier these resources were found in large quantity and life style was easier.
As the fuel resources were abundantly found, every sector was found running successfully and easily. Factories, industries, transportation, great organizations, etc. were in proper condition. People didn’t have problem of scarcity of fuel resources. But slowly and gradually population growth increased and brought bad consequences. Agricultural lands occupied by huge buildings and industries. Also, the number of vehicles also increased. Due to the maximum use of the resources, human life has been in discomfort. Human beings feel that their lives are really unsecured. They always have fear that they will lose work and food. They think that they are themselves responsible for causing scarcity of resources. As they are less conscious of their future, they suffer because of the destruction of the resources. Most of them claim that they will have new resources invented. Of course, new resources such as nuclear energy and solar power have been discovered but they are very dangerous and also expensive in use. People know that their pleasures are in danger and also their future is dark. Coming generations will suffer more than us.
Asimov focuses on the decreasing resources of fuel in the world. The life will be full of struggle without fuel resources. This world will slowly go dark, as less lighting bulbs will be there in the streets. Electrical appliances will be used less as there will also be scarcity of electricity. Even luxurious provisions and equipments will be impossible. More time will be taken to do simple work also as there won’t be any vehicle running in the streets. There will be difficulty in transportation and accumulation of required foodstuffs. Due to the shortage of food, people will die due to starvation and malnutrition. Due to lack of proper balanced diet, there will be problem in human brains. Child death rate will increase, as children will be deprived of proper nutritious and body building food. Specially, simple towns, suburbs will be affected much. These areas depend upon transportation for all kinds of things. They will be in danger of extinction. Every human activity will be minimized due to less light, heat, and less comfort.
Security forces will also be affected badly. Without the use of weapons, military forces will be purposeless. Their work will end because they can’t work without fuel. They use scientific weapons, which are operate with fuel and are very expensive. Only the technically strong countries will be able to exercise their military power if fuel is saved in time. Factory workers will be jobless as industries and factories will be closed. So, it will be very difficult for them to provide basic needs to their family also.
Only small benefits will be there due to lack of fuel. The environment will be fresh, cool and pure. Crime rates will decrease. People will understand the importance of nature and will go attached with it. People will be cooperative, as all of them will be facing same problem. They will keep themselves warm using sweaters and other thick clothes only.
The writer tries to warn us from the devastating situation of this world in the coming future. If we are not serious at present only, we have to suffer a lot in the future. We must t understand the importance of the nature and try to conserve it. The world is depending upon the trade and because of trade the environment is being neglected. People are living in the cities and the environment of the cities is polluted. Major population of world should be engaged to plant the trees to make a better world in future. We cannot use the solar easily and even if we use, it cannot naturally help us. But if we preserve the jungle, our environment and energy will be improved.
Unchopping a Tree
-W. S. Merwin
In the essay “Unchopping a Tree”, the writer presents impossible example to convey deep meaning. Joining the chopped parts of trees refers to the new plantation of more trees in the open fields, which are full of stumps. Every part of trees refers to the every parts of the nature whether they are small or big. Each and every parts of nature is important. As we are also the creation of the nature, it is our duty to maintain the balance in the nature. We don’t have rights to destroy the nature. Actually we are not destroying the nature but we are destroying ourselves. Our lives totally depend upon the nature. Through the writer’s appeal to join the parts of the chopped trees, he wants to remind human beings about their important works to be done to conserve the greenery of the nature.
Unchopping a tree is impossible. It is only a kind of feeling but certainly it has meaning. The writer emphasizes on the preservation of the nature. The nature should be preserved and those persons who cur the trees must plant some more in replacement. When they save and plant the trees, it is unchopping a tree. The writer warns that it is easy to destroy but very hard to create. He further says that life of a tree and human life are the same so they should be preserved with equal emphasis. Not only the trees we should save but also should protect the habitats of some animals who live in trees.
The writer tries to persuade us how to work hard to bring the chopped tree into the original situation, which is not really possible. When a tree is felled down, there is no way to bring it into its original condition. But its place can be replaced with more trees, which we plant. Trees are also the important parts of the ecosystem as other living creatures. We should think of conservation of such trees instead of deforestation for the protection of the ecosystem.
Keeping Things Whole
The poem Keeping Things Whole is taken from Selected Poems (1980). The poet pleads for wholeness against the usual fragmentation that goes on in life. The poet believes in whole part and not in partial. He knows the value of each and every part of nature to present nature as whole. He tries to know the value of each and every small and small constituents of nature to continue the wholeness of nature. The poet indirectly pleads human beings to fill the gaps in the nature if they separate the parts of nature. The poet indirectly pleads human beings to keep nature whole by conserving its every small parts in every small part in every nook and corner.
The poem deals with two separate things of anything, which are part and whole. The nature has small parts small parts. It is divided into the separate elements. He has lost himself in the field. He is losing himself everywhere. The poet parts the air forward but it becomes whole behind him. He only makes the air whole, not a part. But everything becomes whole itself. We see field, air, etc as a part not as a complete. Our lives are also parted but it is only illusion. If we try to make separate parts, that is only hollowness of concept.
The poet has presented himself in the field missing and parting in the air and he is whole not part in the bank drop. He wants to be whole, not part. He is not happy with himself because he is an intruder in the natural environment. He feels that he is fragmenting, disturbing and damaging the natural wholeness that is why air moves to fill the spaces occupied by his body while he walks. He becomes careful not to disturb the wholeness of things in the environment. This shows his concern to the protection of environment.
The poet suggests that if human being involves to encourage the existence of the nature, the nature also gives reaction. For example, if we cut down the forest, land erosion, flood, landslides occur. Then, men get knowledge from the nature that the nature itself is powerful rather from human beings. Even if man tries to challenge the existence of the nature, he can’t get victory over it. So, the poet becomes very much sensitive for the delicate balance of the nature. –
The last stanza suggests that we all move to make a whole, not part. The poet moves forward and he parts the air but it becomes whole again. So, what we think of being parted i.e; that is wrong. Everything in the world is whole.
“Concrete Cat” is an example of a concrete poem, a poem just giving focus to the physical picture and not the imagination, emotion and language. This type of poem is written for eyes and not for mind and heart. It does not appeal to the heart because it doesn’t emphasize on emotion and thought. It is written in the short form, which is also called “reduced language”. Words do not follow the regular pattern of the poems. Words are scattered in such a way that they form the real portrait of the thing to be expressed by the poem. The chief concern of such a poem is with the physical appearance of poetry- not primarily with ideas or emotions and also not with language as we ordinarily use.
This poem says something about a cat and its “catness” in action. Ear, eye, mouth, whisker, tail, etc. all sketched on the page denote both physical and abstract meanings. The middle stripe is the only place where language aspires toward poetry and becomes figurative. This middle stripe shows stomach part which says much about the human world and human activities.
Unlike other poem, the words are arranged in such a way that emotions are kept in a shadow and real portrait is highlighted. From the words written in different shapes and styles we understand the poem. The poem creates such a situation that we can see the real picture of cat immediately after we read the poem. Outer appearances seem to be important than emotions and thoughts. Different parts of cat’s body are presented by the use of words in their respective places.
Generally poems are written in certain stanza and generally follow the traditional pattern. Many poems are written in ornamental language. But, this poem doesn’t follow that pattern. This poem is made for our eyes rather than our ear. The meaning of the poem is nothing other than the portrait of the cat. The poet has used craftsmanship.
Oops! How’s That Again?
“Oops! How’s That Again” is an essay written by Rosenblatt and this essay has a humorous tone. Through the humorous tone also, the essayist has tried to reflect the bitter reality of human beings when they make mistake when they speak. He enriches his discussion with remarkable examples; although, as befits its subject. He is much concerned with the psychological causes of bloopers.
Human beings often make mistake knowingly and unknowingly when they speak. After making mistake they also apologize for it. From the uneducated person to highly intellectual and educated, scholar, different mistakes are made according to their level. This essay describes the mistake the people make while speaking and the reasons behind it are divided into four categories. They are as follows: i. Public Blunders ii. Memorable Translations iii. Bloopers iv. Spoonerisms.
Public Blunders are the mistakes made by the people when they give speech. While delivering the speech, they don’t actually care for the grammatical mistakes or vocabulary mistakes. These mistakes are specially committed by especially by the political leaders when they deliver their speech. They try to give emphasis by giving different examples but their sentences are not totally complete. This happens due to their tongue slip. Here the speaker may be trying to give message from one view but the different audience may take it in wrong way.
Memorable translations are the mistakes generally done by the people who speak very fast. This is also related to the psychological condition of the listener. The words spoken by the fast speaker may not be easily understood the real words. There may be misunderstanding between the speaker and listener. The person with weak psychology, if, wrongly interprets the words of the speaker, it may bring violent situation.
Bloopers are the mistakes done foolishly and not tried to correct. These mistakes are very simple types of mistakes, which are not given much importance by the speaker. This may be the habit of some people. Spoonerisms are the mistakes, which are done by the use of incorrect words due to tongues slips. Here, wrong words are not known by the listener as the speaker immediately tries to replace the wrong word when he comes to know the mistake. While the replacement of words the speaker should be conscious as wrong replacement can misinterpret the actual meaning.
There are different views about the verbal errors according to different people. Victoria Fromkin, a linguist, says that the verbal errors happen due to tongue slips concerned with the brain. Before the words are expressed, thought is placed by the brain into a grammatical framework. Sigmund Freud, a psychiatrist, presents his theory about the verbal error in different way. According to him, a tongue slips are caused by the network of id (unconscious mind), ego (subconscious mind) and superego (conscious mind). When people make mistakes, it has become the trend to laugh at them. Why do we laugh at them we don’t know. According to the philosopher Henri Bergson, the act of laughter is caused by any interruption of normal human fluidity or momentum. So, tongue slips are like slips of banana peels. We simply make fun and hoot at the errors simply to break the monotonies.
Rabindranath Tagore is a Bengali Indian poet, writer and philosopher. He was born is 1861 and died in Calcutta (now Kolkata). He is famous for his poetic works, philosophical plays, novels and short stories. The poetic play, Malini, is a story of love and hatred. It also deals with the topics such as religion, faith, friendship, devotion, sacrifice, forgiveness, loyalty, betrayal, etc.
The play opens with the agitation of the Hindu Brahmins for the banishment of Malini, the princess of Kashi. A Hindu kingdom. Malini has been charged for her acceptance of a new creed, i.e. Buddhism. Having been taught by Buddhist Monks, she was influenced by Buddhism. She does not find any attachment with the worldly beauty and the material world. She thinks that wealth does not cling to whose destiny it is to find riches in poverty. Her mother, the Queen opines that for a woman, husband and children are the objects of worship.
The king and the Queen are worried about her acceptance of Buddhism and request her to give up her new creed. The Queen believes Malini to be a pure flame of fire and thinks some divine spirit has taken birth in her but the king does not want her to take the burden of the world on her shoulders.
Kemankar, a firm and determined youth, is the leader of agitators. Supriya, the childhood friend of Kemankar is also an agitator. Malini is charged as a poisonous snake who is aiming at the heart of Hindu religion. Supriya does not approve the idea to banish Malini in the name of religion. He knows that the truth cannot be determined by the force of numbers. He supports Malimi’s belief that the love and truth as soul and body of all religions. Though the essence of all religions is same, Kemankar believes in their different forms. Supriya leaves the assembly assuring Kemankar about their friendship.
All the agitators step back when they come to know that the army is in support of the agitation. They think it as a rebellion and extreme measure. They believe that their faith, not the arms, will give them victory. So make penance and invoke the goddess to descend from heaven to less and give power to them. Malini enters with all in the palace, and receives the honour of the ordinary citizens except Kemankar and Supriya. They ask for forgiveness, Malini announces her self exile and wants to make home renouncing the royal palace. Kemankar becomes alone in the agitation. So he makes a plan to go to the foreign land to bring soldiers to fight. Though Supriya does not like this plan, he wants to go with him for their friendship’s sake. Kemankar orders him to remain there to watch and keep him informed.
The first part of the play ends with the conversation about Malini. The king shows the determination to banish Malini as the demand persisted but he immediately changes his mood when he learns about Malini’s missing. But Malini is brought back by the Brahmins and the soldiers with a great honour.
The second part of the play opens in the garden where Malini and Supriya are talking. Supriya wants to be led by Malini but she does not think herself so great to lead him. During conversation Malini wants to learn about Kemankar from Supriya. He said that Kemankar’s mind has always been firm and determined while his mind or thoughts are always flickering with doubts. Supriya suddenly reveals that he has deceived his friend by informing his plan to the king.
The king enters. He is very much happy with Supriya and so he proposes Supriya to ask for anything even the princess Malini along with provinces worthy to tempt a king. But he refuses all. He thinks these as rewards for his treachery. He only wants love from Malini, which she has for every creature in the world.
Kemankar has been captured by the king’s soldiers and the king is going to execute him for his treason. Both Malini and Supriya plead the king to pardon him. He is brought before the king who wishes to meet Supriya. Since he wants to know why Supriya has done that or why he betrayed his own friend. Supriya replies he did to keep faith. He blames Supriya being a faithless. Supriya replies that true faith is there is love, where there is man. He says he got the knowledge from malini, which he could not get from any sacred books. Supriya wants to make compromise but Kemankar says falsehood and truth cannot live side by side in friendship.
Supriya assures Kemnakar that he is paying his life for his love as Kemankar knows for the faith. At this Kemankar wants them to be judged in front of the death. Then Kemankar strikes Supriya with his chains and Supriya falls and he dies. Kemankar calls for his executioner but Malini requests the king to forgive him.
Character sketch of Malini.
Princess of Kashi, a Hindu kingdom.
Innocent young girl.
Influenced by Buddhism.
Does not find any attachment with the worldly beauty and material world.
Thinks that wealth does not cling to those whose destiny it is to find riches in poverty.
She is a Pure flame of fire and seems as if some divine spirit has taken birth in her.
Maintains that love and truth to be the soul and body of a religion.
Has love for all the creatures in the world.
Has infinite compassion to everyone, even to the sinner as Kemankar.
Like a lamp in the darkness.
Has forgive to everyone, etc.
The Six Million Dollar Man
Harold J. Morowitz
Dr. Harold J Morowita is a professor of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry. He is a scientist, teacher, and author. ‘The Six Million Dollar Man’ is a popular essay in which Morowitz examines the statistical statement that the chemical value of the human body is only 97 cents. He spends his essay in refining and improving the statement and tries to arrive at a more accurate definition at the end.
From a biochemical catalogue he collects the information about the price of ingredients that the human body is made of. Then he calculates the average value of a gram dry weight of human being and his own dry weight. When he multiplies both, he finds his price, i.e. Six million dollar. But soon he realizes that each human being is priceless and infinitely precious. He concludes his essay with Alfred North Whiteheads conclusion that “ the human body is an instrument for the production at art in the life of the human soul.”
The author received a humorous birthday and from his daughter and son-in-law with a caption “ According to BIOCHEMISTS the materials that make up the HUMAN BODY are only worth 190 cents.” The definition compelled him to make thorough study of the entire matter. He started by sitting down with his catalogue from a biochemical company and began to list the ingredients and their prices. His biochemical value was 97c when he was paying for the informally poorest form of cool, air, water, lime, bulk iron, etc. but in the six million dollar figure he was paying for his atoms in the highest informational state in which they are commercially available.
It can be done for less than six thousand trillion dollars. But we cannot evaluate the human life in biochemical point of view. An incubator can develop micro-organisms artificially but it cannot assemble the cells into tissues, tissues into organs, and organs into a person, fill it with life and make a human being.
Thus, each human being is priceless and infinitely precious. We cannot evaluate a person’s life in terms of money. The rationality and humanity are the characteristics of human being. It can produce anything. Alfred North Whitehead is true that “ The human body is an instrument for the production of art in the life of human soul.”
Morowitz shifts his subject. He starts out talking about the human body and ends up talking about the human being. Human body and human being differ from each other. Human body is made up of chemical organism but a man becomes human being because of consciousness, rationality and some indispensable human qualities.
ON THE VANITY OF EARTHLY GREATNESS
“On the Vanity of Worldly Things” is a poem written by Arthur Guiterman, an American poet and journalist, is best known for his humorous verse. Through humour, he has tried to depict the reality of human beings and animals caused by the change in time. It shows the bitter reality that the power of animals or human beings doesn’t remain same when time and situation change. We always run after reputation and prestige. We become or want to be great and we think it will remain the same forever. We earn reputation and prestige and we think it will remain the same forever. We earn reputation and we think that the credit won’t be lost but actually we won’t think that is destroyed in due course of time. Our greatness is dismissed by time. So, time laughs at our blindness and pride.
Time is such a thing on which we cannot get victory. The nature has given us limited time to live and exercise our power. Beyond that time, we cannot move according to our desire. Only in favourable time and situation we can perform our actions or activities.
The “vanity” actually means the degrading value of reputations of any persons and animals in the world. To clarify this point the writer has presented few examples. Julius Caesar was a great warrior and a famous general statesman. He earned a great name and fame in his time through his strength and power. But that power lost its value with the change in the time and situation. He does not posses any arm and power to show his power of the past. His head is on the shelf and weapons and other things belongings are only in the museum in the form of history.
The roman emperor Charlemagne was a great in his time by his sword, power. But the power of his sword also became meaningless due to the change in time. Now that sword has been rusted and is kept useless in the museum. Not only the great kings and warriors, but there is also good presentation of powerful animals whose value has been decreased. Grizzly bear, whose embrace was very dreadful, has become nothing more than a rug to give warmth. Tusks of mighty brawls of mastodons have been changed into playing things like billiard balls.
All the given examples are concerned with the greatness but the greatness has been turned and reduced to valueless things. The vanity human greatness and animals’ strength have become a good subject to present irony. That irony makes one feel unwell and quite indifferent to the person.
Everybody becomes great in his time and situation but later on he becomes helpless and valueless. All reputation and achievements will be dismissed quickly. So, it is useless to take pride in one’s power as everything decays and fades away in due course of time.
‘In Bed’, an essay by Joan Didion depicts her personal experiences with migraine headache, which she inherits from her parents. She presents something unusual about the disease in a more philosophical and meditative domain of thought.
Joan spends her day in bed there almost five times a month because of the migraine headache. She knows that she is going to be attacked by the headache when she feels some sort of irritation and flow of blood in the vessels of her brain. To avoid the attack she takes some medicines and starts to work. In her earlier days, she thought that she would get rid of the disease just by denying it. Sometimes she even tells lies saying that she did not have the attack frequently. But the truth was that sometimes the attack was quite violent and long lasting. However, she feels good that she does not have any other physical problems, such as brain tumor, eyestrain or high blood pressure. She also tries to do all her normal work in spite of it. During the attack her right temple (head) would suffer extreme pain and tears would roll down from her right eyes. She would also vomit. Generally the headache may also be caused by stress, allergy, and tiredness, an abrupt change in blood pressure, a flashing light or a fire drill.
It’s strange that no medicine works effectively in case of migraine, especially when the attack begins. Some people may have hallucination, blinding effect, stomach problem, tiredness and pain in all the senses along with headache. They are even unable to do their normal work. During the attack Didion can’t see and speak clearly. She looks as if she has drunk some wine. But the headache never takes anyone’s life. It is interesting to know what doctors believe about a migraine sufferer. They said that the individual is ambitious, inward, and intolerance of unbearable pain But Didion’s untidy hair and carelessness in house keeping do not point out her migraine quality. However her great effort to write and rewrite a single paragraph for a week reveals some sort of perfection. Finally she accepts the diseases and lives with it. When she has it she simply concentrates on the pain. But after ten or twelve hours she gets some sort of refreshment and spiritual power. She opens the window and feels the air, eats gratefully and sleeps well. She feels as if she is blessed by God. Therefore she is happy.
Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936), a British poet, novelist, and the writer of short stories was born in India and set many of his writings in the Indian flavor. He was awarded by the Nobel Prize for literature in 1907.
‘The Gardener’ ends surprisingly revealing the reality of Helen, the protagonist, and her relationship with Michael. Michael, whom Helen calls nephew, is in reality, her son whose father is unknown throughout the story. The gardener is a mysterious character who does not appear at first and in the middle but only at the last of the story creating confusions in the readers.
Helen Turrell conceals (hides) the truth about Michael till the end of the story but she does not show any reaction when the gardener confidently says he will tell where her son lies.
Helen Turrell conceals (hides) the truth about Michael till the end of the story but she does not show any reaction when the gardener confidently says he will tell where her son lies.
The villagers of Hampshire believe Michael to be an unfortunate son of Helen’s late brother, George Turrell and his beloved (not wife). Actually it was not so. She had created a false story about Michael’s parents. Michael was born when Helen was in southern part of France. She had told lies about her trip that she had long troubles. Because of the fear of social stigma she had told another lie that she had arranged for the passage of the child and a nurse from Bombay. She was thirty-five when she gave birth to the child. She showed much fondness to the child despite the fact that she was not the child lover.
Michael was fearless, Philosophical, and fairly good-looking. At the age of six, he knew that Helen was not her real mother but his aunt. She did not allow Michael to say her mummy because she was unmarried. To escape from the society’s contempt, she made Michael know the false reality.
Michael got maturity in due course of time but his interest in Helen was constant and increasing throughout. Though Helen wanted him to go to Oxford University, he took war as his career. The First World War was going on. Many soldiers were killed during war. Michael was killed by the shell-splinter explosion. After getting full proof about his death, Helen, being a next of –kin, prepared to go and see his grave in Hazenzeelein the third Military Cemetery with perfect information.
In a teashop, three kilometers away from cemetery, she met an English Woman, Mrs. Scarsworth. They stopped in a hotel where Mrs. Scarsworth revealed that she had come there to see the grave of someone special to her and also that she was unmarried. Helen told lie that she had come to see her nephew’s grave.
Next morning she walked alone towards the grave. As she was searching at the mean time she saw a man knelt behind a line of headstones-evidently a gardener. He did not introduce with her neither did he salute her. He asked her who she was looking for. She said it was Lieutenant Michael Turrell, her nephew. He had finite compassion in his expression and eyes. He said he would show her where her ‘son’ lay. She went away, supposing him to be the gardener when she left the cemetery.