An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum | NCERT Class XII Poem Explanation

April 23, 2020

An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum | NCERT Class XII Poem Explanation

An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum by – Stephen Spender. NCERT Class XII Poem Explanation. Class XII English Poems explanation and difficult words. This poem ‘An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum’ was part of ‘The God that failed’, 1949


An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum | NCERT Class 12 Poem Question Answers


Far far from gusty waves these children’s faces.
Like rootless weeds, the hair torn round their pallor:
The tall girl with her weighed-down head. The paper
seeming boy, with rat’s eyes. The stunted, unlucky heir
Of twisted bones, reciting a father’s gnarled disease,
His lesson, from his desk. At back of the dim class
One unnoted, sweet and young. His eyes live in a dream,
Of squirrel’s game, in tree room, other than this.


‘Far far’ repetition to lay stress on the distance i.e. very far away.

‘gusty waves’ sudden rush of strong wind is full of energy and vigour.

The faces of the children are very far from being energetic as they should be.

‘Like rootless weeds’ use of similie. Rootless is without a
foundation of values, weeds being unwanted.

So, the children are unwanted and without any bindings,
their hair is smeared all over their pale faces.

Description of the children in the classroom.

Second Stanza

On sour cream walls, donations. Shakespeare’s head,
Cloudless at dawn, civilized dome riding all cities.
Belled, flowery, Tyrolese valley. Open-handed map
Awarding the world its world. And yet, for these Children, these
windows, not this map, their world,
Where all their future’s painted with a fog,
A narrow street sealed in with a lead sky
Far far from rivers, capes, and stars of words.

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