A Tiger in the Zoo (Poem)

By | March 22, 2019
A Tiger in the Zoo (Poem)| Question and Answers | NCERT | Class 10 | English | First Flight

Thinking about the Poem (Page 30)

Question 1. Read the poem again, and work in pairs or groups to do the following tasks.
(i) Find the words that describe the movements and actions of the tiger in the cage and in the wild. Arrange them in two columns.
(ii) Find the words that describe the two places, and arrange them in two columns. Now try to share ideas about how the poet uses words and images to contrast the two situations.

Answer 1 (1)

In the Cage In the Wild
Stalks Lurking in Shadow
Few Steps of his cage Sliding through long grass
Quiet rage Snarling around houses
Locked in a concrete cell Bearing his white fangs, his claws
Stalking the length of his cage Terrorising the village
Ignoring visitors
Stares at the brilliant stars



Cage Wild
Few steps of his cage, Shadow

Concrete cell,

Water hole

Long grass

Behind bars


Plump deer

Houses at jungle’s edge

Patrolling cars Village

Question 2. Notice the use of a word repeated in lines such as these:
(i) On pads of velvet quiet, In his quiet rage.
(ii) And stares with his brilliant eyes At the brilliant stars.
What do you think is the effect of this repetition?

Answer 2 This repetition is a poetic device used by the poet in order to increase the intensity of the tiger’s rage and his helpless silence. ‘Velvet quiet’ refers to the quiet velvet pads of the tiger, which cannot run or leap. They can only walk around the limited space in the cage. The use of ‘quiet rage’ symbolises the anger and ferocity that is building up inside the tiger as it wants to run out into the forest and attack a deer, but the rage is quiet because he is locked in the cage and is helpless. The repetition of ‘quiet’ has, thus, brought immense beauty to the poem. Similarly, the use of ‘brilliant’ for the tiger’s eyes as well as the stars also brings out the magnificence of these lines. The tiger stares at the brilliant stars with his brilliant eyes dreaming about how beautiful his life could be in the forest. The repetition thus, gives a wonderful effect to the poem.

Question 3. Read the following two poems — one about a tiger and the other about a panther. Then discuss:
Are zoos necessary for the protection or conservation of some species of animals? Are they useful for educating the public? Are there alternatives to zoos?

The Tiger
The tiger behind the bars of his cage growls,
The tiger behind the bars of his cage snarls,
The tiger behind the bars of his cage roars,
Then he thinks.
It would be nice not to be behind bars all
The time
Because they spoil my view
I wish I were wild, not on show.
But if I were wild, hunters might shoot me,
But if I were wild, food might poison me,
But if I were wild, water might drown me.
Then he stops thinking
The tiger behind the bars of his cage growls,
The tiger behind the bars of his cage snarls,
The tiger behind the bars of his cage roars.
                                                             – Peter Niblett
The Panther
His vision, from the constantly passing bars,
has grown so weary that it cannot hold
anything else. It seems to him there are
a thousand bars; and behind the bars, no world.
As he paces in cramped circles, over and over,
the movement of his p0werful soft strides
is like a ritual dance around a centre
in which a mighty will stands paralysed.
Only at times, the curtain of the pupils
lifts, quietly. An image enters in,
rushes down through the tensed, arrested muscles,
plunges into the heart and is gone.
                                           – Rainer Maria Rilke

Answer 3 The Zoos are very necessary for the protection or conservation of many species. Zoos are safe and can also be used to educate the public about the importance and nature of wild animals and their role in maintaining the ecological balance. In a zoo, an animal would feel caged , bound and not free to roam around in large area.Wildlife sanctuaries, reserves and national parks have been instituted in order to conserve the endangered species. These places provide protection as well as natural habitat to these species.

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