NCERT Solution for Class 7 English Honeycomb Book Poem 7 Dad and the Cat and the Tree Summary, Explanation, Question Answer
Dad and the Cat and the Tree – NCERT Class 7 English Honeycomb book Poem 7 Dad and the Cat and the Tree Summary and Detailed explanation of the poem along with the meanings of difficult words. Also, the explanation is followed by a Summary of the poem. All the exercises and Questions and Answers given at the back of the lesson have been covered. Take Free Online MCQs Test for Class 7 Click Here
|Dad and the Cat and the Tree Introduction||Dad and the Cat and the Tree Summary|
|Dad and the Cat and the Tree Explanation||Dad and the Cat and the Tree Question Answers|
Dad and the cat and the Tree Introduction
The poem is about a cat who got stuck high on the tree and a father who tries to rescue the cat but fails in a humorous way.
Dad and the cat and the Tree Summary
The incident the poem talks of takes place in the morning. A cat gets stuck in a tall, wobbly tree. The poet, who is the child in this poem, asks the father to rescue the cat. The father immediately brings a ladder to climb the tree. Meanwhile, the mother asks the father to be careful. The father tells the mother not to worry. He said that he was a great climber, and climbing a tall, wobbly tree such as that was a child’s play for him. However, as he climbed the ladder, it slipped and he fell on top of the garden’s flower bed. The father didn’t let this demotivate him. He brushed off the dust and then he tried Plan B. He told everyone to stand out of the way. The mother asked him to be careful again, to which the father’s response was light-hearted. He swung himself on a branch as his second attempt. However, the branch broke and he landed on his back. The mother became shocked and more anxious and asked him to stop because she feared that he would break his neck. But he told her that it was easy and that he was going to try Plan C. He climbed up the garden wall. Luckily and surprisingly, he didn’t fall. He then gave a great leap and landed in the crook of the tree-trunk and on the cat. The cat yelled and jumped down onto the ground. It was now safe and sound. But funnily, the father was now stuck up the tree.
Dad and the cat and the Tree Explanation
This morning a cat got
Stuck in our tree.
Dad said, “Right, just
Leave it to me.”
dad: informal way of saying father
leave it to me: you can count on me, I’ll be responsible for it
The incident took place in the morning when a cat got stuck in the tree present in the poet’s house. The poet’s dad saw the cat who was in trouble and told the other members of the family to leave the task of rescuing the cat to him. He meant to say that he would surely get the cat to safety.
The tree was wobbly,
The tree was tall.
Mum said, “For goodness’
Sake don’t fall!”
mum: informal way of saying mother
for goodness’ sake: an exclamation expressing protest
The poet in this stanza describes the tree. The tree was tall and wobbly, meaning that it was risky for a middle-aged man like the father to climb it. That is why the mother is introduced in this stanza. As a caretaker of the family, she will naturally be worried for her husband’s safety. She said the phrase ‘for goodness’ sake’ which clearly indicated that she was protesting or she was against the idea of her husband climbing an unsteady tree. She asks him to be careful and to not fall off.
“Fall?” scoffed Dad,
“A climber like me?
Child’s play, this is!
You wait and see.”
scoffed: laughed mockingly
child’s play: very easy to do
When the father heard her wife’s warning, he scoffed and gave a light-hearted reply. He told her that a climber like him would never fall off a wobbly tree. In other words, we can say that he was trying to show his family that he was brave and nothing could hurt. He wanted to see them be proud of him. He said that climbing a tall, wobbly tree was a child’s play, and he told them to wait and see how heroically he rescues the cat.
He got out the ladder
From the garden shed.
It slipped. He landed
In the flower bed.
shed: simple roofed structure used for garden storage, to shelter animals, or as a workshop.
flower bed: a garden plot in which flowers are grown.
In this stanza, dad brings out the ladder from the garden shed. He placed it and climbed it. However, the ladder wasn’t placed properly. When he climbed it, the ladder slipped and he fell. He landed right on the flower bed of the garden.
“Never mind,” said Dad,
Brushing the dirt
Off his hair and his face
And his trousers and his shirt,
brushing the dirt off: removing the dirt from oneself
Dad didn’t let this failure demotivate. He said nevermind as he removed the dirt off his hair and face and clothes. This meant that he was getting ready for a second attempt.
“We’ll try Plan B.
Stand Out of the way!”
Mum said, “Don’t fall
Dad said that he would try Plan B. He told everyone to stand out of the way so that nothing could stop him or hinder his plan. The mother, who became more anxious due to the fall, pleaded with him to not fall again.
“Fall again?” said Dad.
Then he swung himself up
On a branch. It broke.
Dad replied that him falling again was a joke, meaning that it would be impossible. He then tried to save the cat for the second time. He swung himself up on a branch. However, the branch was too weak to support his weight, which is why it broke and he fell again.
Dad landed wallop
Back on the deck.
Mum said, “Stop it,
You’ll break your neck!”
landed wallop: fell heavily
He now landed heavily on the ground. The mother, who was first just worried, is now shocked and scared for the father’s life. She expresses this by telling the father to stop climbing the tree or he’ll break his neck.
“Rubbish!” said Dad.
“Now we’ll try Plan C.
Easy as winking
To a climber like me!”
winking: closing and opening one eye quickly
The father didn’t pay much attention to his wife. Instead, he said that she was saying rubbish things and that climbing a tree was as easy as winking to a great climber like him. He means to say that he was such a great climber that he could easily climb a wobbly tree just he could easily wink.
Then he climbed up high
On the garden wall.
He didn’t fall!
The father then goes on to try out his Plan C, which is his third attempt to rescue the cat. He climbed up the tall garden wall and climbed till he reached the top of the wall. The poet here introduces a twist here – we were expecting the father to fall from the garden wall, but he didn’t. What the poet tries to tell is that when we are determined to do something even though we fail a lot of times, we tend to succeed because we learn from our mistakes. The father tried his best to learn from his mistakes and chose the best possible way to save the cat. That is why he didn’t fall.
He gave a great leap
And he landed flat
In the crook of the tree-trunk —
Right on the cat!
leap: jump or spring a long way, to a great height, or with great force.
flat: in or to a horizontal position.
The father then gave a great leap towards the tree. Then, he landed in a horizontal position on the bend of the tree-trunk, on which the cat was sitting. He thus landed right on top of the cat he wanted to rescue.
The cat gave a yell
And sprang to the ground,
Pleased as Punch to be
Safe and sound.
sprang: move or jump suddenly or rapidly upwards or forwards.
pleased as Punch: very pleased
safe and sound: unhurt
When the father landed onto the cat, the cat yelled as it was surprised and hurt by the father’s weight. It then jumped rapidly towards the ground. It was now not stuck from the tree. The cat was feeling very pleased as it was on the ground safe and sound.
So it’s smiling and smirking,
Smug as can be,
But poor old Dad’s
smirking: smiling while evoking insolence, scorn, or offensive smugness
smug: having or showing an excessive pride in oneself or one’s achievements.
The cat is now safe and sound. So it is smug and is smirking because it has pride in tricking the father and seeing him in trouble now. It is feeling great satisfaction to see the hero being stuck up the tree. The cat is laughing at the father while being on the ground, whereas the father is now in trouble because he is the one who is stuck up the tree.
Dad and the cat and the Tree Question Answers
Working with the Poem
Q1. Why was Dad sure he wouldn’t fall?
Ans. Dad was sure he wouldn’t fall because he was very confident in his climbing skills and felt that climbing a tree was a child’s play for him.
Q2. Which phrase in the poem expresses Dad’s self-confidence best?
Ans. There are two phrases which express Dad’s self-confidence best – child’’s play and as easy as winking. These two phrases tell us that Dad was extremely confident in his climbing skills.
Q3. Describe Plan A and its consequences.
Ans. Plan A was the first attempt of Dad in saving the cat. In this, he got out a ladder from the shed present in the garden which was full of other garden tools. He put the ladder in the position he wanted and started climbing it. Now comes the consequence of Plan A. The ladder slipped and Dad fell and landed in the flower bed. There can be two reasons why the ladder slipped – Dad didn’t put it properly or his weight was too much for the ladder. Due to these reasons, Plan A was a failure.
Q4. Plan C was a success. What went wrong then?
Ans. Plan C, in which the father climbs the garden wall and leaps onto the tree, was a success. This is because the father was able to get the cat out of the tree.
However, something went wrong in the end. The cat was able to get out of the tree but the father, who sat on the cat on the crook of the tree-trunk, was stuck on the crook. So, he took the cat’s place on the crook of the tree-trunk.
Q5. The cat was very happy to be on the ground. Pick out the phrase used to express this idea.
Ans. So it’s smiling and smirking,
Smug as can be,
These lines of the last stanza show that the cat was very happy to be on the ground.
Q6. Describe the Cat and Dad situation in the beginning and at the end of the poem.
Ans. In the beginning of the poem, Dad was free and was standing safe and sound and on the ground whereas the cat was stuck up the tree and hence was captivated and scared. However, at the end, we see the opposite of the situation. The cat is now safe and sound and on the ground whereas dad is now stuck up the tree and troubled by the situation.
Q7. Why and when did Dad say each of the following?
(ii) Never mind
(iii) Funny joke
Ans. (i) Dad said this when the mother gave her first warning to him and asked him not to fall down. He said this because he couldn’t believe that anyone could think that such a great climber like him could fall from a tree.
(ii) Dad said never mind when his first attempt failed. He said this to show that mistakes can happen even from a great climber like him and that it was totally normal because he was a human and all humans can make mistakes.
(iii) Dad said this when the mother gave him a second warning. It shows how much confidence Dad had on himself.
(iv) Dad said this when the mother had given him a third warning. He said this because he believed that her warnings were rubbish or senseless. This again shows his self-confidence.
Q8. Do you find the poem humorous? Read aloud lines which make you laugh.
Ans. Yes, I find the poem humorous.
He landed In the flower bed.
“Fall again?” said Dad. “Funny joke!” Then he swung himself up On a branch. It broke.
Dad landed wallop Back on the deck.
But poor old Dad’s Still Stuck Up The Tree!
NCERT Solutions for Class 7 English