KSEEB Solutions for Class 9 English Poem Chapter 1 The Grass is Really Like Me

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Karnataka State Board Class 9 English Poem Chapter 1 The Grass is Really Like Me

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The Grass is Really Like Me Questions and Answers, Summary, Notes

Comprehension:

C1. Read the poem silently and answer the following questions after discussing your response in pairs or in groups.

The Grass Is Really Like Me Question 1.
What does the poet mean by the phrase,’ raise its head’? Literally it means to straighten up after being flattened.
Answer:
But metaphorically it means to survive and establish one’s identity again.

KSEEB Solutions For Class 9 English The Grass Is Really Like Me Question 2.
Explain the phrase, ‘unfurl underfoot to fulfill itself.
Answer:
The grass opens out even if it is under the foot of someone; to do justice to its existence. Likewise, women seek meaning in their lives even when they are trampled upon by men.

The Grass Is Really Like Me Poem Questions And Answers Question 3.
Refer to lines four and five. Are they contrasting? Which one do you think is the poet referring to?
Answer:
Line four talks of the woman made to feel ashamed of her being a woman and line five talks about the forcible submission of a woman by men. They are contrasting and the poet refers more to the second thought. She feels that woman by herself is never submissive but it is men who make her become one.

The Grass Is Really Like Me Questions And Answers Question 4.
The poet is associating herself with the grass. Why? When she says ‘me’, is she referring to just herself or the entire womenfolk?
Answer:
The poet associates herself with the grass because just as grass is trampled upon by all passersby, a woman is also trampled upon by patriarchal forces in society. However, when the speaker says, ‘me/ she doesn’t mean her individual self; she means the entire womenfolk who are more or less in the same position of subjugation.

KSEEB Solutions For Class 9th English The Grass Is Really Like Me Question 5.
Do you think the ‘lawnmowers’ are the same in the case of the grass and the poet?
Answer:
No, the lawnmowers in the case of the grass are workers who are doing their duty. But the lawnmowers in the case of the poet are the chauvinistic people who don’t believe in the concept of equality of women.

KSEEB Solutions For Class 9 English Chapter 1 Question 6.
Pick out the line from which the poet shifts the attention from ‘grass’ to ‘woman’. Who is the ‘you’ inline 11?
Answer:
It is inline 11 that the poet moves from the impersonal to the personal. From the lawnmowers, she moves on to men who dominate over women. ‘You’ refers to all those who victimise women.

The Grass Is Really Like Me 9th Standard Question 7.
What does the phrase ‘scorching defeat’ refer to? What does the poet mean by the words ‘grafted on to the earth’?
Answer:
The phrase ‘scorching heat’ refers to the various forms of torture a woman faces in her life. Those who do not have the strength to overcome the violence and injustice, are grafted on to the earth. It means they don’t have the capacity to raise their heads.

KSEEB Solutions For Class 9 English Poem 1 Question 8.
What is the poet trying to tell us in lines 18 and 19?
Answer:
Lines 18 and 19 refer to those women who succumb to the power that works against them. They get grafted to the earth and allow the more powerful to have their victory. They are like weak straws. However, not all women are weak and feeble. Some women raise their heads and fight against injustice. They are like the grass which unfurls and fulfills itself even as it is being trampled upon.

The Grass Is Really Like Me Critical Analysis Pdf Question 9.
‘But neither the earth’s nor woman’s desire to manifest life dies’ Explain the meaning of the lines above.
Answer:
By equating the desire of the earth and the desire of the woman, the poet makes it very clear that it is natural for the woman to have the desire to manifest herself. Just as the earth reveals its self, its glory, a woman wants to establish her selfhood, her autonomy. Those who go against this impulse in a woman are going against the natural order in nature.

C2. Put the following lines in the table given below according to the figure of speech used in them:

  1. The grass is also like me.
  2. As soon as it can raise its head
    • The lawn mower
    • Obsessed with flattening it into velvet
    • Mows it down again.
  3. But they are merely straw not grass.
  4. Fear is the tax that conscience pays to guilt.
  5. Work is food for noble minds.
  6. Man needs God as he needs water and oxygen.
Simile Metaphor Personification

Answer:

Simile Metaphor Personification
The grass is also like me. But they are merely straw not grass. As soon as it can raise its head.
Man needs God as he needs water and oxygen. Work is food for noble minds. The lawn mower Obsessed with flattening it into velvet Mows it down again.
Fear is the tax that conscience pays to guilt.

Additional Questions:

Answer the following:

The Grass Is Really Like Me Notes Pdf Question 1.
What does the poet compare herself to?
Answer:
She compares herself to the grass.

The Grass Is Really Like Me Questions And Answers Pdf Question 2.
How does the grass try to fulfill itself?
Answer:
It unfurls underfoot.

The Grass Is Really Like Me Question And Answers Question 3.
What happens to the grass when it tries to raise its head?
Answer:
The lawn mower flattens it again.

KSEEB Solutions For Class 9 The Grass Is Really Like Me Question 4.
Who is compared to the lawn mower?
Answer:
Man, who suppresses women, is compared to the lawn mower.

KSEEB Solutions For Class 9 English First Language Question 5.
What does not die with either the grass or with the woman?
Answer:
The desire to manifest life does not die with either of them.

The Grass Is Really Like Me Pdf Question 6.
Who are grafted to the earth?
Answer:
Those who cannot bear the defeat of their courage are grafted to the earth.

Question 7.
Why is the grass compared to a woman?
Answer:
The grass, being on the ground, is trampled upon by people walking over it all the time. Similarly, men push women down all the time without letting them make their decisions freely or act independently.

Question 8.
What is the lawn mower obsessed with?
Answer:
The lawn mower is obsessed with flattening the grass into velvet. As soon as it raises its head, the lawn mower mows it down.

Question 9.
How is the lawn mower comparable with man?
Answer:
The lawn mower is comparable with man because as soon as a woman tries to be independent and tries to reveal herself (through her opinions and thoughts), man puts her down. It is like the lawn mower which flattens the grass as soon as it raises its head.

Question 10.
How are the earth and woman similar?
Answer:
The earth and woman have a strong desire to manifest life. They represent the spirit of life. Nothing stops them from holding on to life against all odds.

Question 11.
Who is grafted to the earth?
Answer:
Those who cannot see themselves defeated or who cannot overcome the abuse are grafted to the earth. They need support, like the straw.

Question 12.
In what ways is the woman’s position comparable to that of the grass?
Answer:
The poem presents the feelings of a woman in a male ‘ dominated society. It shows the way women are treated through an interesting metaphor. The woman identifies herself with the grass. For, the grass is trampled upon by people walking over it all the time. By mowing it from time to time, the grass is tamed and cut. Similarly, a woman is not free to act or to take decisions independently.

Her freedom to do anything is curbed. Man, like the lawn mower which pulls down the grass, keeps pulling the woman down. The grass is soaked by water, scorched by the sun, and pushed down by the lawn mower, all trying to annihilate it. So, the woman’s position in a male-dominated society is comparable to that of the grass.

Question 13.
How does the speaker in the poem equate herself with the earth?
Answer:
Women, as well as the earth, have a strong survival instinct. They do not get totally destroyed under any severe conditions. Nature has gifted them with the power to resist all odds and survive even in the worst conditions. Their desire to manifest life does not die. However much men may struggle to put her down, she springs back to life. Under the worst possible conditions too, the earth strives hard to put out a shoot from a dried plant. Therefore, the woman here equates herself with the earth.

Explain the following with reference to the context:

Question 1.
“It has to unfurl underfoot to fulfill itself’.
Answer:
This line is taken from the poem, ‘The Grass is Really Like Me’ by Kishwar Naheed, a well known poet of Pakistan.
In the line above, the speaker in the poem compares her position to that of the grass. She does not have the freedom to think and express. She has to play a subservient role to man. She is oppressed by him. She cannot take decisions because men keep pushing her down all the time.

Similarly with the grass; it cannot grow freely. The moment it grows, the lawn mower is ready to flatten it, as do the people who trample over it. So, the grass, being soft and giving way, slowly opens out or unfurls under the trampling foot. It does not raise its head. A woman too cannot show that she is capable. She is expressive only in hiding.

Question 2.
But neither the earth’s nor woman’s desire to manifest life dies.
Answer:
The line above is taken from the poem, ‘The Grass is Really Like Me’. The poem is written by Kishwar Naheed, a well-known poet of Pakistan.

In these lines, the poet compares herself with earth. At the smallest opportunity and under the least congenial conditions, the earth brings forth life. The desire to manifest life cannot be curbed or killed. A woman too, like the earth, is full of spirit. Her energy is used for creating life. So, it is not easy to suppress a woman. Her desire to manifest life springs forth.

Multiple Choice Questions:

Question 1.
The poet compares her life to
A) the life of another woman
B) the life of a lawn mower
C) the life of a blade of grass
D) None of the above.
Answer:
C) the life of a blade of grass

Question 2.
‘It has to unfurl underfoot to fulfil itself means it has to
A) wilt down and die
B) prove its existence
C) get trodden by people
D) dry up and become straw.
Answer:
B) prove its existence

Question 3.
“The grass is also like me”. The word ‘me’ refers to
A) the poet only
B) people in general
C) women in general
D) one particular woman.
Answer:
C) women in general

Question 4.
The lawn mower in the case of the poet is
A) man
B) a woman
C) the people
D) the government.
Answer:
A) man

Question 5.
‘How you strive and endeavour to a level woman down too’. means men push down women whenever the women
A) assert themselves
B) show what they are
C) show what they can do
D) All of the above.
Answer:
D) All of the above.

Question 6.
‘The lawn mower obsessed with flattening it into velvet’ The figure of speech employed here is
A) Simile
B) Metaphor
C) Personification
D) Oxymoron.
Answer:
C) Personification

Question 7.
Women are oppressed constantly and hence their desire to manifest themselves
A) dies forever
B) never dies
C) never tries to show itself
D) accepts defeat.
Answer:
B) never dies

Question 8.
The women who are like straw
A) accept defeat and never grow
B) are stuck down at the bottom
C) are united with the earth
D) All of the above.
Answer:
D) All of the above.

Appreciation:

A1. Read the poem silently and choose words from the bubble that describe the mood of the poet. Give reasons for your answer.
The Grass Is Really Like Me KSEEB Solutions for Class 9 English
Answer:

  • Resentful: Though the poet does not directly express her bitterness, it is clear that she disapproves of the treatment meted out to women in society. So, we can say that she is resentful which means indignant, angry.
  • Reflective, pensive, wistful: All these words mean that the poet is thoughtful. The poet is certainly contemplative of the fate of women in society.
  • Dejected: Though the poet has the courage to put up a fight against the forces that push women down, the present scenario makes her feel dejected, which means, gloomy and depressed.
  • Repulsive: Though repulsive is a strong word, we can choose it as reflective of the poet’s mood, because repulsive means revolting. We can see that the poet sows the seeds of revolt when she says that women who make way for men by being grafted to the ground are meek like straw. Stronger women like her are like the grass which has the ability to come up in life.

A2. Look at the following phrases that are associated with certain ideas. Match them with the corresponding ideas given in the box below.

  1. unfurl underfoot
  2. fulfill itself
  3. scorching sense of shame
  4. heat of emotions
  5. scorching defeat
  6. raise its head
  7. make way for the mighty

KSEEB Solutions For Class 9 English The Grass Is Really Like Me
Answer:

  1. unfurl – underfoot
  2. fulfill – itself
  3. scorching sense of shame – embarrassed
  4. heat of emotions – an insult
  5. scorching defeat – shameful defeat
  6. raise its head – try to progress
  7. make way for the mighty – outshine.

A3. Discuss the answers to the following questions with your partner and then write them in your notebook.

Question 1.
The poet says ‘the grass is also like me’. How does she bring out this relationship in the second stanza?
Answer:
In the second stanza, the poet shows that just as the grass is repeatedly mowed down whenever it tries to raise its head, a woman’s freedom and autonomy are curbed every now and then. However, just as the grass keeps raising its head, a woman also keeps trying to restore her dignity.

Question 2.
Explain the ironical ideas used by the poet in the last stanza. How do you analyze them?
Answer:
The irony is used at different levels in the last stanza. The poet accepts the fact that there are a whole lot of women who are unable to. withstand insult and succumb to shameful defeat. These are the ones who make way for the mighty. But the poet uses the word ‘mighty’ ironically because the ones who use their power to curb the power of others are not the ones who deserve the epithet of mighty. They are in fact petty. Similarly, it’s ironic that the grass that seems to be the weakest aspect of nature is resilient and can come back to life again and again despite the repeated onslaught against it.

Question 3.
The poet has used some unusual words and phrases to evoke images in the reader’s mind as for instance, ‘scorching sense of shame’. Such a poetic device is called imagery. Pick out such phrases from the poem.
Answer:

  1. unfurl underfoot
  2. heat of emotions
  3. flattening it into velvet
  4. scorching defeat
  5. grafted on to the earth
  6. to make way for the mighty.

The Grass is Really Like Me by Kishwar Naheed About The Writer:

Kishwar Naheed is one of the best-known women poets of Pakistan. She was born in Bulandshahr, Uttar Pradesh, in the year 1940. Her poems have been translated into other languages such as English and Spanish. She has written for children and also penned a collection of traditional ghazals. She founded an organization named ‘Hawwa’ (Eve) which helps women without the independent income to become financially independent, through cottage industries and selling handicrafts. She also used to write for the daily newspaper, ‘Jang’.

The Grass is Really Like Me Summary in English

The poem ‘The Grass Is Really Like Me’ is a feministic poem. The poet compares herself to the grass. The poet is associating herself with the grass because she feels that the condition of women and of the grass is the same. When she says ‘me’, she refers to the entire womenfolk. There are many points of similarity between the grass and a woman. In the case of the grass the lawn mower cuts down all the grass, but in the case of the poetess, the dominating society suppresses all her efforts to come up.

When the grass is cut or grafted, it grows again. Similarly, a woman’s feelings and emotions, which are suppressed by the dominant section of the society, rise up again and again. The phrase ‘raise its head’ implies that when women raise their voice for freedom and agitate for it, like the grass under the feet, they are trying to grow up even in their subjugated position. In the woman who raises her head, the emotions are contrasting. Even though the sense of shame is insufferable, her inability to retaliate keeps her silent. However, internally her heart yearns for equality.

The phrase ‘scorching defeat’ refers to painful burning result of the courage shown by the women. The poetess means that the defeated are suppressed just as the grass is cut and thrown down.

The poet is trying to tell us that the defeat makes the way for the bigger or the stronger. The defeated grass is cut and fallen on the ground. The remaining straw makes way for the stronger machine. Similarly, the women who remain recessive, make way for the dominant society.

The earth’s desire is to make the seedling grow. That is why even after repeated grafting, the grass grows. In the same way, woman’s desire to express or unfurl cannot be suppressed. The dominant society may curb it repeatedly but her desire will ‘raise the head’ again.

Glossary:

unfurl: open out, spread out
wetness: dampness, moisture
manifest: reveal
lawnmower: a machine used for cutting the grass on a lawn
endeavor: make an effort
grafted(past tense of ‘graft’): joined together, united
merely: just, only, simply
straw: dried stalks of grain used as fodder or for thatching, packing, etc.

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