A ROADSIDE STAND-Question
The little old
house was out with a little new shed
In front at
the edge of the road where the traffic sped,
stand that too pathetically pled…
Q.1.Why was the 'little old house' extended towards
Ans. The little old house, the roadside stand, existed on the roadside
to make a living out of the city money. The owners of the roadside stand
expected to attract the rich city men by extending the stand closer to the
Q.2.Which traffic is referred to here? Why are they
Ans. The traffic referred to here is the cars and other vehicles of the
rich people from and to various cities. These rich city men are in great hurry
to make money by doing business in the city.
Q.3.Why is the Stand's existence said to be
Ans.The roadside stand's sole expectation
is the flow of city-money into their hands. But their expectations are never
fulfilled as the rich men are not considerate about them and hence a pathetic
existence for the roadside stand.
It would not
be fair to say for a dole of bread
But for some
of the city money, the cash, whose flow supports
The flower of
cities from sinking and withering faint…
Q.1.Why is it unfair to say that these people are
begging for a 'dole of bread?'
Ans.One may think that the poor people at
the roadside stand are beggars. But they are not. Unlike the beggars, who beg
unconditionally, shamelessly and sometimes unreasonably, the people of the
roadside stand have something to sell, some information to share and a noble
reason behind their begging.
Q.2.What do the poor
people really expect from the rich?
Ans. The poor people expect a small share of the money from the rich
Q.3. How do the poor people
look at the city money?
Ans. For the poor people at the roadside stand money is very essential
for growth and survival. It boosts the growth of the city and the city people.
Q.4.What is the flower of the cities? How?
Ans. Prosperity/growth is
the flower of the cities. As the flower is the crowning glory of a plant,
growth becomes the flower of a city.
traffic passed with a mind ahead
Or, if ever
aside a moment, then out of sorts
At having the
landscape marred with the artless paint
Of signs with
S turned wrong and N turned wrong…
you mean by 'polished traffic?
Ans.Polished traffic portrays the insensitive attitude and gentlemanly appearances
of the city-men. They appear to be 'polished' outside but their minds do not
understand the sufferings of the poor people.
'passed with a mind ahead.'
Ans. The city people who passed by the
roadside stand were self centered and their minds
were restless with greed for money and ambitions for great profits in their
Q.3.What are the usual complaints made by the city men when they stop
at the roadside stand?
Ans. The rich people to and from
the cities usually have the same sets of complaints. Having failed to see the
wretchedness of the poor, they complain that the roadside stand, with its
artless paint, ruined the beauty of the nature. Another complaint is that the
letters are wrongly written.
senseless do the rich men's complaints sound to the
the poor people of the roadside stand, the rich men's complaints, that the
landscape is destorted with their poor sense of color, that they sell poor quality fruits and that they
have a low literacy level, sound to be childish and infuriating and senseless.
How did the
poor people "mar" the landscape?
What does 'of
signs with S turned wrong and N turned wrong' convey?
sale are wild berries in wooden quarts
necked golden squash with silver warts,
Or beauty rest
in a mountain scene…
articles are 'offered for sale' at the stand?
Ans. Wild berries in wooden containers, croock-necked
golden squash with silver warts and paintings of mountain scenery are for sale
at the roadside stand.
qualities of the 'offered articles' make them unfit for sale?
Ans. The articles for sale at the
roadside stand are wild and therefore lack the polished look of the similar
articles available in the cities. Moreover these articles are not packaged
properly and they are far expensive than those in the cities.
'beauty rest in a mountain scene' mean?
Ans.Beauty resting in a mountain scene is probably a scenic painting made by
the inhabitants of the roadside stand meant for selling to the rich people.
You have the
money, but if you want to be mean
Why, keep your
money (this angrily) and go along.
Q.1.What do the poor people of the roadside stand feel when the city men
decline from buying anything?
the rich city men decline to buy articles from the roadside stand, the poor
runners of the stand feel dejected and angry. They ask the city men to keep
their money with them and leave the roadside stand without further bargain or
The hurt to
the scenery wouldn’t be my complaint
So much as the trusting sorrow of what is unsaid:
Q.1.Why is the
poet's complaint different from that of the rich city men?
Ans. The rich city men have their hollow
complaints that come out of their failure to understand the core level
struggles of the poor. But the poet is concerned for the poor and therefore his
complaints are relevant.
Q.2.What do you mean by the trusting sorrow of the poor people?
Ans. The poor people are instinctively
sensitive and expectant to the promises of the rich and the mighty. They
believe their hollow promises and wait for their realization. But finally their
hopes give way to the miserable realization that the promises made by the rich
are not meant to be fulfilled.
you understand when the poet says that the trusting sorrow of the poor people
poor people place their trust in the fake promises of the rich people and the ruling
parties and consequently become sorrowful. The poet complains that this sorrow
of the poor people has not been brought to the serious concern of the concerned
authorities, media and the public.
Here, far from
the city we make our roadside stand
And ask for
some city money to feel in hand
To try it will
(not) make our being expand…
Q.1.What do the people at the roadside stand expect from the rich? What for?
Ans. The poor people at the roadside stand
expect the generosity of the rich city people. They hope to alleviate their
poverty by getting money from the city people.
And give us
the life of the moving pictures’ promise
That the party in power is
said to be keeping from us.
Q.1.What are moving pictures? What kind of life is promised by the
Ans. The movies the poor people
have watched are full of promises for them. In those movies they saw people who
journeyed from poverty to prosperity.
Q.2.What do 'the parties in power' 'keep from the poor people?
Ans. The governments and the
corrupted politicians keep the share and the allotted rights of the poor people
away from them and use that for their selfish motives.
Q.3.How are the rich politicians responsible for the misery of the
Ans. The rich and corrupted
politicians keep the money assigned by the government for the poor people in
their own malicious hands and make selfish use of them, thus depriving the poor
people of their rights, happiness and all that they deserve.
It is in the
news that all these pitiful kin
Are to be
bought out and mercifully gathered in
To live in
villages, next to the theater and the store,
won’t have to think for themselves anymore…
Q.1. What is the good news for the poor people?
Ans. The media keep on advertising
that the governments are planning schemes for the welfare of the poor people.
think the 'good news' for the poor people' ever come true? Why?
Ans. No, the promises of the
governments for the poor people are not seriously meant and therefore most of
them remain just promises and are forgotten. This happens because these
promises are the election baits and the bureaucratic trick to exhort money in
the name of the poor people.
good doers, beneficent beasts of prey,
their lives, enforcing benefits
That are calculated to soothe them out of their wits…
Q.1. Who are the greedy good doers? What is the irony in the 'greedy
Ans. The business class and the political
parties and leaders are the greedy good-doers mentioned here. A greedy person
cannot be a good doer. These good doers intend to make money out of the poor
people by appearing beneficent to them.
Q.2 What does
'beneficent beast of prey' imply?
Ans. Similar to 'greedy good-doers,' 'the beneficent beasts of prey' is
also an indication to the greedy people who make money in the name of social
and political and charitable works.
Q. 3. How do
the rich 'enforce benefits' on the poor?
Ans. In business promises wrapped up in
glossy appearances have great value. The rich business people convince the poor
of the advantages of their new schemes and promotions and make them buy their
products and be their customers.
Q. 4. What
sort of calculation is made to 'soothe the wits of the poor?' Does this
calculation work? How?
Ans. The business minded city people attract
the poor people with their well-planned promotional offers and promises. These
promises and offers are such a way calculated that the poor people cannot
escape the traps of the rich. The businessman's calculations work well as there
is a more efficient brain behind all these promises.
teaching them how to sleep, they sleep all day,
sleeping at night the ancient way…
Q.1 Who teach the poor people to sleep? How?
Ans. The rich people through their alluring
promises of peace of mind and prosperity in life teach the poor people sleep.
Q.2. Are the
poor able to sleep? Why? Who are really able to sleep?
Ans. The poor people are unable
to sleep as promised by the rich as the promises were not meant to be. On the
contrary the rich people are able to sleep peacefully with the satisfaction of
making themselves richer by exploiting the poor.
Q.3.How do the
influential rich destroy the sleep of the poor? How is this done in the ancient
Ans. The influential rich people
give the poor great promises and exploit them to make profit out of them. This
destroys the sleep of the poor people. This method of the rich and mighty is as
old as the human civilizations.
feel myself I can hardly bear
The thought of so much childish longing in
that lurks near the open window there,
That waits all
day in almost open prayer…
Q.1. What is the childish longing? Why is it in vain?
Ans. The poor people's uncertain
and futile expectation for the city money is the childish longing. It is in
vain as the rich city people do not have the generosity to help them.
OR: Children long to achieve things beyond their reach; but never get
them. The poor people’s expectation that the rich people would give them money
is their childish longing. it is in vain because the
hard-hearted rich people never give them a penny.
Q.2. Why can't
the poet bear the childish longing of the poor people?
Ans. The poet is a true humanitarian who is
genuinely concerned for the poor people's misfortunes. He wants a solution for
their poverty. But seeing how childish their longings are, the poet feels it
sadness remains at the window of the roadside stand?
Ans. There is a sadness of
helplessness, of unfulfilled promises and of being fooled by the parties in
power remaining near the roadside stand.
the prayer of the open window?
Ans. The open window is praying for a
generous traveller stopping at the stand to buy something and paying a generous
amount to alleviate the distress of the poor people.
Q.4.Why is the
‘open window’ said to be in ‘open prayer’ for the city people’s generosity?
Ans. The open window of the
roadside stand has acquired the attitude of poor people of the roadside stand.
Just like the people, the window also expects the city-men to stop their cars
to help the poor people.
For the squeal
of brakes, the sound of a stopping car
Of all the
thousand selfish cars that pass
Just one to inquire what a farmer’s prices
Q.1. How do the poor people react to the squeal of brake in front of
the roadside stand?
Ans. At the sound of the squeal
of brakes, the sound of a stopping car, the poor people at the stand feel their
spirits cheered at the possible arrival of a customer to buy their things.
Q.2. Why are the cars called 'selfish cars?
Ans. The cars are selfish because the people who
travel in them are self centered.
Q.3. What do you understand by 'farmer's prices?' Who want to
know that? Possibly why?
Ans. Farmer's prices refer to the wages for which the farmer could be
hired to work in the city. Farmer's prices can also refer to the prices of the
berries, squash and paintings displayed at the roadside stand for sale.
And one did
stop, but only to plow up grass
In using the
yard to back and turn around;
And another to
ask the way to where it was bound;
And another to
ask, “could you sell a gallon of gas?”
Q.1 How do the city men plow up grass
in the yard of the roadside stand?
Ans. The insensitive and selfish city men
drive their cars into the yard of the roadside stand to back and turn it
around, leaving a huge cloud of grass plowed up.
Q.2. What is the most queer demand of the rich man at the
roadside stand? How is it queer?
Ans. The insensitive city man demands a gallon of
gas at the roadside stand. This is queer because the city man is not aware of
the fact that the poor man cannot provide him with expensive items such as gas.
Q.3. Why are the poor people angry with the city men when they ask
Ans. The roadside stand has the store of wild
berries, squash and paintings which are never bought buy
the city men. On the contrary the city men require a gallon of gas and the
roadside stand does not have it for sale. This helplessness make
the poor people angry.
They couldn’t (this crossly), they had none,
didn’t it see?
No in country,
money, the country scale of gain,
lift of spirit, has never been found…
Q.1. Why do the people at the roadside stand talk ‘crossly’ with the
poor people sometimes become angry with the rich people. The latter refuse to
buy the wild berries at the stand at a price demanded by the owners of the stand.
They indulge in bargain and blame the berries and squash. But the poor, who
know the rich people are so mean, grow angry at their unwillingness to help
them by parting with a little amount of their money.
Q.2. How is
money important for the village people?
village people think that money is important for growth in the village. They
hope to make improvements in their wretched state of life.
Q.3. What are the two significant roles of money in the lives of
the poor people?
Ans. Money is the measuring rode of growth for the village people. They
estimate their economic growth by means of the small amount of money at hand.
Similarly, money is necessary for a villager to feel confident. He feels a
‘lift of spirit’ with money in reach.
Q.4. How does money become the 'requisite lift of spirit for the
Ans. Money is the most important requirement for man in the modern
world. If one has money at hand then he feels confident and a feeling of his
spirit being lifted.
Q.5.Why is money
never found in the villages?
Ans. It is a common truth that
countryside is backward and therefore it remains poor and penniless. Moreover
the country folks are easy targets of the politicians and business-men and
therefore they are easily cheated and looted. Besides, if these poor people are
given money then they will migrate to prosperous cities or make a city in the
place of their village.
Or, so, the
voice of the country seems to complain.
I can’t help
owning the great relief it would be
To put these people at one
stroke out of their pain…
Q.1 What is the voice of the country?
Ans. The voice of the country is that the
rich people have no concern for them, and that they are being exploited,
cheated and given false promises by the parties in power, and that there is no
end for their miseries.
Q.2. Why can't the poet help 'own' the relief of helping the poor
out of their poverty at one stroke?
Ans. The poet wants to see that the poor
people are given some kind of help and support by the rich people but he knows
that this would not happen. When he fails to see this, he allows himself to
dream that these poor people have been helped by some supernatural powers to
alleviate their miseries.
Q.3. What kind of a relief does the poet dream for the poor
Ans. The poet dreams of a supernatural help
for the poor people, a touch of magic or the like, so that the poor people will
be redeemed from their state of poverty and misery.
Q.4. Why does the poet seek an unrealistic solution for the poor
people’s distress even though he himself blamed them earlier for their
'childish longing in vain?'
Ans. The poet, unlike the greedy good-doers,
genuinely wishes to get the poor people out of their pain, poverty and endless
miseries but he is sad and helpless to see that there is no one to help them
come out of their poverty. This helplessness drives the poet to seek an
unrealistic solution for the poor people’s misery.
And then next
day as I come back into the sane,
I wonder how I
should like you to come to me
And offer to
put me out of my pain.
Q. 1What does
the poet see when he comes back into his senses?
Ans. The poet sees the city cars still
passing without feelings, the helplessness of the poor people and the endless
misery of the people at the roadside stand.
Q.2. What does the poet want his readers do for him?
Ans. The poet is greatly
distressed that the poor people are not helped by the government and rich
people. He finally resorts to some heavenly help for the poor by which their
poverty would be removed. But soon he realizes how childish his dreams are
seeing that the poor haven’t improved. At this point the poet wants his readers
to promise him to help the poor.
Q.3. What is the poet's pain?
Ans. The poet’s pain is that the poor people
are still waiting for the rich people’s generosity and that the rich people
never help the poor people. He is also sad that his insane dreams of the poor
people helped by a stroke were only dreams.
Q.4. How can his readers remove the poet's pain?
readers can get the poet out of his pain by offering to help the poor people.