Q. What is the father’s greatest wish for his son? (2marks) (2015)
-> The father’s greatest wish for his son is to build a new relationship with his son which was there when the son was a small boy. He wages for the sweet old affinity.
Q. Silence surrounds us. I would have
Him prodigal, returning to
His father’s house, the home he knew,
Rather than see him make and move
His world, I would forgive him too,
Shaping from sorrow a new love (2016)
(i) Why does the father say that silence surrounds them? (1mark)
-> Father said that silence surrounds him because his relation with his son has almost diminished.
(ii) Does the speaker want his son to belong to a different world? (1mark)
-> No, the speaker does not want his son to belong to a different world.
(iii) What can be shaped out of sorrow? (1mark)
-> Love can be shaped out of sorrow.
(iv) Find a word in the passage that means “Extravagant” (1mark)
(v) What idea do you form about the relationship between father and son from the quoted lines? (4marks)
-> The father cannot know anything about his son because the son stays away in his own world and does not care for the father’s feelings. So, the father wishes to build up a relationship which existed between them when the son was a little child.
Q. I do not understand this child
Though we have lived together now
In the same house for years, I know
Nothing of him, so try to build
Up a relationship from how
He was when small. (2017)
i. Where do these lines occur? (1mark)
-> These lines occur in the poem “Father to Son.”
ii. Why does the speaker say that he does not know this child? (1mark)
-> Because they do speak to each other, they have no communication.
iii. For how long have the father and son lived together? (1mark)
-> For many years.
iv. What does the speaker try to build? (1mark)
-> The speaker tries to build a new relationship.
v. What idea do you form about the relationship between the father and son from the quoted lines? (4marks)
-> The poem is a description of a father’s sadness over the emotional separation from his son. When the son was a little child the father spent all his love, care and energy on the son and wished that she would grow up into a man and understand his father. But after growing up the son turned into a person totally different from his father with differences in opinions, ideas and choices of love. Both of them became almost strangers to each other and this hurts the father. The poem describes the personal experience of a father, but this pain is fairly universal to all parents as we see many children who hardly care for the feelings, emotions and loneliness of their parents in old age.
Q. Father and son, we both must live
On the same globe and the same land,
He speaks: I cannot understand
Myself, why anger grows from grief
We each put out an empty hand,
Longing for something to forgive (2018)
(i) Where must father and son live together? (1mark)
-> Both the son and the father must live ‘on the same globe’ or in the same world.
(ii) What is the source of the father’s anger? (1mark)
-> The grief of the grieved father turns into anger
(iii) What does the ‘empty hand’ signify? (1mark)
-> The father feels that neither his son nor he himself is going to be profited by staying estranged from each other, both are at losses.
(iv) What do they long for? (1mark)
-> They long for something to forgive
(v) What idea do you form about the relationship between the father and his son from the quoted lines? (3marks)
-> The father cannot know anything about his son because the son stays away in his own world and does not care for the father’s feelings. So, the father wishes to build up a relationship which existed between them when the son was a little child
Q. Does the poem ‘Father to Son’ talk of an exclusively personal experience or is it fairly universal? Give a reasoned reply. (3marks) (2018)
-> In the poem the poet does talk of an exclusive personal experience. He talks about the deep differences that separate both of them. But the poem does have a universal appeal. The father and the son represent the generation gap that separates every father and every son in every family.
Q. Whom do you hold responsible for the atmosphere of mutual distrust that prevails between the father and the son? Give a reasoned answer. (3marks) (2019)
-> The lack of understanding on the part of the older generation (here, father) is the root of the problem. The father wants the young man to stick to home turf. The son, now a young man, seeks fresh avenues and lives in a world of his own. The father finds it hard to adjust to the growing changes. The father is unable to understand his son due to the generation gap. It is a psychological and emotional gap between parents or older people and the young ones. This creates misunderstanding and a lack of attachment between the parents and children. The success lies in how effectively the parents can avoid the generation gap or ignore differences with their children.