Wind, Poem Class 9 CBSE English Explanation, Summary, Difficult Words, Literary devices
By Ruchika Gupta
CBSE class 9 English Poem- Wind
CBSE class 9 English Poem - detailed explanation of the lesson along with meanings of difficult words and literary devices used in the poem . Also, the explanation is followed by a Summary of the lesson . All the exercises and Question and Answers given at the back of the lesson
Class 9 Poem –by SUBRAMANIA BHARATI
[Translated from Tamil byA.K. Ramanujan]
Introduction to the Poem
We all know that wind is a natural phenomenon. In this poem, the poet talks to the wind. The power of wind has been described and the poet says that wind is destructive. He has linked the destructive power of wind to the adversities of life and says that the weak people break down, but stronger people emerge out of adversities, stronger. The poem gives an important message that we should be mentally tough and physically strong in order to survive the hardships of life. A weak person breaks down like a weak building and crumbles.We must make these destructive forces our friends, with our strength and determination.
Poem and Explanation
Wind, come softly.
Don’t break the shutters of the windows.
Don’t scatter the papers.
Don’t throw down the books on the shelf.
There, look what you did — you threw them all down.
You tore the pages of the books.
You brought rain again.
You’re very clever at poking fun at weaklings.
poking fun: making fun of something
weaklings: a person who is weak
The poet is talking to the wind. He asks the wind to come softly. So, he is saying that the wind should not be very strong, loud.It should be soft and subtle. Then he says that the wind is very powerful it is destructive, it breaks the shutters of windows and scatters the papers. When the wind is very powerful, all the books which are kept on the shelf fall down. So here, the poet is describing the power of the wind. Then he says to the wind to look at the destruction that it had done. Whenever there is a strong wind all the thing that are weak, like small plants, tiny children, etc., they all get scared and they can even fall and get hurt. We can say that in the initial part of the poem, the poet is referring to wind as a young child. He is saying that it should come softly just like a small child does. In the later part, we come to know that the wind is destructive just like a youth. Just like a young boy or a young girl who is full of energy, violence and destruction.
Frail crumbling houses, crumbling doors, crumbling rafters,
crumbling wood, crumbling bodies, crumbling lives,
crumbling hearts —
crumbling: falling or to cause something to break
rafter: sloping beam which support the roof of the building
Here, the word ‘Crumbling’ is repeated so many times to lay stress that everything crumbles in the face of a strong wind. So, the writer is saying that when wind is very powerful, it is very strong, it leads to breakage of everything. Houses which are weak, fall, doors which are weak fall, the beams on which the roof of the buildings are supported, they also fall, all the wooden structures fall, all bodies of people fall, animals, lives, hearts. So, he is saying that everything crumbles. Everything that is weak reacts by falling down and breaking in the face of adversity. So, the poet is saying that whenever a weak person faces any adversity or challenge in life he breaks down and falls.
the wind god winnows and crushes them all.
winnows: to broke grain free of chaff, separate grain from husk by blowing on it.
The poet is addressing to wind as ‘wind god’, and he is saying that the powerful god of wind winnows, that means he sifts all the people and those people who are weak fall down and get crushed. So here, a comparison is made between wheat and people. Just like we winnow the wheat to separate the grain from chaff, the wind god separates the strong people from the weak people. When there is a strong wind, all the things that are weak fall and get crushed.
He won’t do what you tell him.
So, come, let’s build strong homes,
Let’s joint the doors firmly.
Practice to firm the body.
Make the heart steadfast.
Do this, and the wind will be friends with us.
steadfast – firm
The poet wants us to make friends with the wind i.e. the adversities in our lives.He says that the problems will not listen to us. They will come, so we should be prepared. In preparation,we should build strong homes and close the doors of our house firmly so that the wind cannot get into. And then he says that we should also make our bodies strong and hearts firm to face these challenges. And then once we are strong enough all the challenges will be like friends. We will not feel that they are troublesome.
The wind blows out weak fires.
He makes strong fires roar and flourish.
His friendship is good.
We praise him every day.
The poet has kept the wind on a pedestal. He is comparing the wind to god. He says that wind is god and we praise wind every day. He adds that everything that is weak gets finished off in the face of the strong wind. And all the things that are strong, flourish and grow to become stronger. He is giving us a very important message, that we should not feel bad that we are facing so many challenges and adversities in life. We should make our self physically and mentally strong to face these challenges. And once we are strong enough, we will overcome the challenges, we will become friends with them and then we will be happy that we had these challenges in our life because they help us become stronger and better.
Literary devices in the poem
Rhyme scheme - The entire poem is written in free verse. There is no rhyme scheme in the poem.
The literary devices used are as follows –
- Anaphora - When a word is repeated at the start of two or more consecutive lines, it is the device of Anaphora.
Lines 2, 3, 4 begin with ‘don’t’.
Lines 6, 7, 8 begin with ‘you’.
- Personification – wind has been personified. When the poet says ‘you are’, he is referring to wind as ‘you’ that means he is treating wind as a person.
- Repetition - ‘crumbling’ is repeated many times to lay emphasis. The poet wants to say that the wind crushes everything that is weak. That is why he repeats the word crumbling.
- Alliteration - the repetition of a consonant sound in close connection. ‘wind winnows’.
- Symbolism - Symbolism means that the thing refers to some other thing. wind is a symbol. It refers to the challenges in life. He is using wind as a symbol for the adversities in our life.
The first part of the poem describes the action of the wind. The poet asks the wind to come softly. He requests the wind not to break the shutters of the windows, not to scatter the papers and throw down the books from the shelf. But the wind throws the books and tears the pages. The poet says that the wind makes a mockery of weaklings. It brings down frail houses, crumbling doors, rafters, and even weak hearts. It crushes everything that is weak.
The poet advises us to be strong. Only then can we save ourselves from the wind. We should build strong homes with firm doors. Our bodies and hearts should also be strong. It is the way of the world to kick the weak and to be friends with the strong. The wind blows out the weak fires but makes the strong fires roar and flourish. Thus, the poem conveys the idea that nobody cares for the weak. Even the wind is on the side of the strong people. We must make ourselves strong to become successful and overcome the challenges in life.
Question and Answers
1. What are the things the wind does in the first stanza?
A. When the wind blows violently, it destroys everything. It breaks the shutters of windows, scatters the papers, throws the books down from the shelves, tears their pages and brings along a lot of rain.
2. What does the poet say the wind god winnows?
A. The wind God winnows means that nature sifts the weak things from the strong ones. Everything that is weak is tossed by the powerful wind and gets destroyed. Just like the winnower separates the grains of wheat from the chaff, similarly, the wind god separates the weak from the strong.
3. What should we do to make friends with the wind?
A. We must make ourselves strong to face the violent wind. When we will be strong, the wind will not harm us, instead it will become a friend and help us to grow and flourish.
4. What do the last four lines of the poem mean to you?
A. The last four lines of the poem carry an important message that the strong people emerge stronger and victorious in the face of adversities. We must make ourselves strong like a burning fire which grows and flourishes in the violent wind, we also prosper in the face of challenges.