Dust of Snow Class 10 English, First Flight Poem
Detailed summary and explanation of “Fire and Ice” Poem along with meanings for difficult words is provided here. Also, NCERT Question and Answers are also provided to help students understand this Poem and do well in their exams.
This short poem outlines the familiar question about the fate of the world, wondering if it is more likely to be destroyed by fire or ice. People are on both sides of the debate.
Fire and Ice’ is a short poem by Robert Frost. In this poem, the poet refers to two predictions of how the world will end. Some say it will end in fire while others say it will end in ice. According to the poet ‘fire’ stands for desire, greed, avarice or lust. The more you try to satisfy them, the more they grow. There is no end to it. They spread rapidly like fire and engulf your whole life. One becomes selfish and sometimes cruel also. On the other hand, ‘ice’ according to the poet, stands for hatred, coldness and rigidity. One becomes insensitive and indifferent towards the feelings of others. The poet says that both fire and ice are growing with such a rapid speed that the world would soon perish either way, in fire or in ice.
Some say the world will end in fire
Some say in ice.
Explanation : Here, the end of the world’ could mean doom or the Apocalypse, as stated in religious texts like the Bible. It could be a celestial happening, as stated by the astronomer, mentioned earlier. It could also be a natural calamity happening on earth itself, volcanoes, or forest fires, or the Ice Age. It could also mean man-made destruction of the world because of man’s greed or animosity, leading to global warming or nuclear war. It also points to the collapsing of the world around a person because of his mistakes, owing to similar reasons. The poet has demarcated the reason of this destruction into two major schools of
thought – me in favour of fire, and the other in favour of ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favour fire.
But if it had to perish twice
Explanation : The poet knows what it means to have desires. From his knowledge and experience of this feeling, and the havoc it can cause to a person if done in excess, he agrees that desire can be a cause of destruction. Fire is used in reference to the animal tendencies in us. All these emotions are associated with hotness. Here, desire could mean ambitions, aspirations, gluttony, greed, lust, etc. We commit mistakes, or so to say, sins, in running after our desires. We do not see that it can harm other people, animals, plants or nature, if we blindly go after it. Excessive emphasis on desires is what keeps us from experiencing pure joy and bliss.
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice,
Is also great And would suffice.
Explanation: The poet has also experienced negative feelings like hatred himself, and also in people around him. He is owning up to have this feeling himself, so we can also say that he is being very honest with us. Hatred is taken to be an ice-cold emotion. It could also be that he has received this emotion from someone, and knows what wrong it can do. When you become selfish and think only about yourself, you don’t care about anybody else.
Let us understand, why he has associated hatred with ice, and also why destruction by ice is following destruction by fire. You have a fit of rage which is a hot feeling, then it keeps smoldering inside you, and finally you become impervious to love. You become indifferent, uncaring, and devoid of positive feelings. Thus, hatred destroys the very humanity in you. If love is lost, everything is lost, and this is a great recipe for an impending disaster. his line lingers in the mind and makes your hair stand on their ends. It frightens you, and makes you shudder to think that the very inadequacies and imperfections in human nature could boomerang on us and lead to our destruction.
Difficult Word Meanings
|Desire||a strong feeling of wanting to have something||Perish||Die|
|Favour||support, approval||Suffice||be sufficient|