Small Towns & The River Workbook Solution : ISC Rhapsody & Prism

Small Towns & The River Workbook Solution : ISC Rhapsody & Prism

Welcome to “Small Towns & The River Workbook Solution: ISC Rhapsody & Prism,” where we explore ISC English Literature’s captivating narrative. Within these pages, we unravel the essence of “Small Towns & The River” through meticulous workbook solutions. This post offers comprehensive answers to multiple-choice and contextual questions, deepening your understanding of this evocative tale. Meet the characters and delve into the nuances of their development and thematic exploration. Each question serves as a gateway to dissecting the text, urging readers to analyze subtle nuances and extract deeper meanings. Contextual inquiries broaden our canvas for exploration, encouraging critical engagement with socio-cultural backdrops and universal themes. Through this examination, readers sharpen analytical skills and develop a profound appreciation for literary craftsmanship. Whether a student navigating ISC English Literature or an avid reader unraveling beloved stories, “Rhapsody & Prism: Small Towns & The River Workbook Solutions” promises valuable companionship. Join us on this literary journey as we illuminate the path to understanding, one workbook solution at a time.

Table of Contents

Poem Summary :

The Poem in Detail

Stanza 1

The poem begins with a paradox (a statement that appears contradictory) that small towns always remind the speaker of death. The next line continues the paradox with her own hometown being constant(unchanging). Her hometown is surrounded by trees that remain the same in all seasons — be it summer or winter. Similarly, the fying dust or the wind howling down the gorge does not make any impact on the town. Dust is another symbol of death while the howling wind creates a rather gloomy atmosphere. The town is not affected by the dust or the howling wind. It remains calm. This suggests an element of constancy, which is quite in contrast to life and death that constitute an ever-moving cycle. Thus, it is symbolic of duality—nature symbolises life whereas the town symbolises death.

Stanza 2

The second stanza begins with a reference to an incident from the narrator’s personal life, i.e., the death of somebody in the town. After seeing the wreath of tuberoses, another messenger of death, on the dead person the speaker is reminded of her mortality. The entire town mourns the loss together as is represented by the sentence, ‘in the dreadful silence we wept.’ It suggests the close-knit bond among the people of the town. Further, she contrasts the perishability of human life with the permanence of rituals and nature. The rituals have been in existence since time immemorial and have been handed down from one generation to the Other. Thus, they have permanence in contrast to the human life which is caught in the cycle of ‘life and death.’

Stanza 3

In this stanza, the speaker contrasts the transience of human life with the eternity , of nature, represented primarily by the river. In fact, the river is personified, by suggesting that it has a soul. In the summer, the river makes its way through the land with such a force that it seems like a person pouring out its grief in 5 storm of emotion. Here grief is suggestive of the pain a river feels when its water, gets polluted.

It is also suggestive of the possibility of drought or water scarcity that comes’ with overwhelming heat in the summer season. At times it becomes too much for the river that it has to hold its breath for it feels choked and suffocated with filth and dirt. It longs for the clear water through which fish can be seen during daytime and in which the reflection of the stars can be seen at night.

Stanza 4

The stanza begins with a refrain—The river has a soul’. The river flows through the land, beyond the small town. As it flows, it experiences the first drop of rain on its dry surface and also mist on the mountain tops and understands the. immortality of water, i.e., water never dries up, the water cycle continues from the mountains, to rivers and seas and to clouds and rains back to the land. However, while the water in the river is permanent, the river is physically on the move. Thus, a contrast is drawn between the sedentary town and the moving river, suggesting the immortality of nature.

ISC Rhapsody & Prism Workbook Answers : Class 12

Stanza 5

The poet reminisces of her happy childhood days. Childhood, being the beginning of life, represents purity and innocence. It is said to be the happiest and carefree time of one’s life, devoid of the harsh facts of life and the fear of the unknown. The ‘happy pictures’ refer to purity of soul at the dawn of life, i.e. childhood. This is why the happy pictures are enshrined. But when these children grow into, adults, they lose their childhood and are burdened with anxieties. And the entire town gets worried for their future. ‘Small towns grow with anxiety for the future), is symbolic of the fear of their traditions and rituals becoming obsolete under the threat of modernisation.

It is the anxiety of death that awaits the future. The poet goes on to mention the ritual of placing the dead with their heads pointing westwards so that when their soul rises it would go towards the ‘golden east’ meaning heaven. The rising sun symbolises a new day and a new beginning and rebirth. Thus, the poet conveys the immortality of human soul. It is hope of shedding the ‘anxiety for the future’ to rising ‘into the house of the sun’ in the ‘golden east’ that is reassuring. The stanza changes the mood to optimism with a reference to the ‘sunlight’ warming ‘the cool bamboo’. Here, ‘the bamboo’ symbolises the body whereas the ‘sunlight’ represents ‘soul’. As the sunlight is important for the plants, so is the soul which makes the body come to life keeping the universe alive.

Stanza 6

The stanza changes the mood to optimism with a reference to the ‘sunlight’ warming ‘the cool bamboo’. Here, ‘the bamboo’ symbolises the body whereas the ‘sunlight’ represents ‘soul’. As the sunlight is important for the plants, so is the soul which makes the body come to life keeping the universe alive

Stanza 7

In the last two lines of the poem, the poet transplants her morose thoughts with those of spirituality and afterlife. Here, she refers to not just her town but small toms by the river’ generally. She acknowledges the fact that people living in small towns want to ‘walk with the gods’, which means that they wish to live peacefully in the afterlife. Here, there is a reference to soul travelling to heaven and walking with Gods, rather than entering a body. It is suggestive of the immortality of the soul’ quite in contrast to the cycle of life and death. This stanza, thus, highlights the poet’s belief in the afterlife and eternal bliss. Besides, the repetition of the W sound in the last line—we all want to walk with the gods.” Such a harmonious rhythm reflects the poet’s peaceful state of mind, in comparison to the sombre mood at the beginning of the poem.

Workbook MCQs :

1. Which of the following is correct about the poet’s hometown?
(a) It Is affected during the rainy season
(b) It remains the same
(c) It becomes windy at night
(d) It becomes vibrant with change in season.

Answer :- (b) It remains the same

2. The howling of the wind creates what mood in the poem?
(a) Gloomy
(b) Scary
(c) Joy
(d) None of the above.

Answer :- (a) Gloomy 

3. Why is silence described as ‘dreadful’ in the poem?
(a) It creates panic in the mind of men
(b) It gives rise to loud noise afterwards
(c) Its association with death and grief
(d) It leads to decay and destruction.

Answer :- (c) Its association with death and grief

4. Which literary device is used in ‘the sad wreath of tuberoses™?
(a) Simile
(b) Transferred Epithet
(c) Metaphor
(d) Metonymy.

Answer :- (b) Transferred Epithet

5. ‘Life and death’ has been compared with which of the following?
(a) Residents of the town
(b) Tuberoses
(c) Winds
(d) Rituals.

Answer :- (d) Rituals.

6. What is suggested by the phrase The river has a soul?
(a) It is a living entity
(b) It is a heavenly object
(c) It is a revered entity
(d) It can die.

Answer :- (a) It is a living entity 

7. Which figure of speech is used in the line given below? it cuts through the land like a torrent of grief.’
(a) Metaphor
(b) Personification
(c) Simile
(d) Anaphora.

Answer :- (c) Simile 

8. Why does the river seem to ‘hold its breath’?
(a) To feel the flow of water
(b) Due to filthy water
(c) While falling from a height
(d) None of the above .

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

9. What does the river seek by asking for a land of fish and stars?
(a) Market of fish
(b) Pollution free clear water
(c) Colourful water
(d) None of the above.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

10. Which of the following is NOT known by the river?
(a) The first drop of rain
(b) Its dry surface
(c) The mortality of water
(d) The mist on the mountains.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

11. Which figure of speech is used in ‘Life and Death’?
(a) Simile
(b) Assonance
(c) Personification
(d) Antithesis.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

12. What constitutes a ‘shrine of happy pictures’ for the poet?
(a) Shrine in her town
(b) Childhood days
(c) Her town itself
(d) None of the above.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

13. What is suggested by the ‘anxiety for the future”?
(a) Future of children
(b) Anxiety about impending death
(c) The course of the river
(d) None of the above.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

14. What is ‘the cool bamboo’ and ‘sunlight’ symbolic of?
(a) Air; warmth
(b) Winter; summer
(c) Human body; the soul
(d) None of the above.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ] 

15. Which figure of speech is used in the line given below? ‘we all want to walk with the gods.”
(a) Alliteration
(b) Personification
(c) Transferred epithet
(d) Simile.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

Related Posts

Complete The Sentences :

1. In the poem, small towns always remind the poet of death because of their dull, never changing existence.

2. In the poem, the small towns ‘always remain the same’ because they are not affected by the change in season.

3. According to the poet, the entire town mourns the loss of death of somebody because the people of the town have a close-knit bond and join together at the moment of grief.

4. According to the poet, only the rituals are permanent because they have been passed down orally from one generation to the next.

5. According to the poet, the river has a soul because it is an ever-moving living entity that always has water and unlike the town, the flow of its water is affected by change in season and it is immortal.

6. In the summer, the river cuts through the land like a torrent of grief becausFor Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

7. The river sometimes holds its breath because For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

8. The river seeks ‘a land of fish and stars’ because For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

9. Small towns grow with anxiety for the future because For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

10. The poet has used the metaphors of the cool bamboo’ and ‘sunlight’ because For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

Short Question Answers :

1. How has the speaker characterized her hometown?

Answer :- The speaker characterizes her hometown as more than a physical place; it’s a landscape of memories and emotions. The river flowing through it is depicted as a lifeline, carrying the essence of life and collective memories. The town is portrayed as a small, close-knit community deeply rooted in its natural surroundings, where the river serves as a central element shaping its identity and rhythm.

2. How do the people of the small towns mourn the death of their fellow townsmen? What is suggested by their act?

Answer :- The people mourn by immersing themselves in the river, symbolizing a profound connection between the community and the river. This act suggests a belief in the cyclical nature of existence, where death is not an end but a return to the source of life. It reflects a collective understanding that the river carries both the sorrows and the joys of life, serving as a repository of memories and a pathway to solace.

3. How has the poet personified the river?

Answer :- The poet personifies the river by attributing human-like emotions and actions to it. The river is depicted as mourning the loss of the townspeople and seeking solace in its journey. This personification imbues the river with a sense of agency and intimacy, as if it is a living entity with its own desires and emotions. It deepens the reader’s connection to the river, turning it into a character with whom they can empathize and relate.

4. Why has the river been described as a ‘torrent of grief’? Why does it hold its breath?

Answer :- The river is described as a ‘torrent of grief’ because it carries the collective sorrows and memories of the people. It holds its breath in anticipation of finding solace in a land where life thrives. This imagery emphasizes the river’s role as a conduit of emotions, where grief flows as forcefully as its waters. The act of holding its breath suggests a moment of stillness and contemplation, as if the river itself is pausing to reflect on the weight of the emotions it carries.

5. Why does the river seek ‘a land of fish and stars’?

Answer :- The river seeks ‘a land of fish and stars’ as a metaphor for a place of eternal peace and tranquility. It longs to escape the burden of grief and find solace in a realm untouched by human sorrow. The imagery of fish and stars evokes a sense of natural harmony and beauty, where life flourishes in all its forms. By seeking such a land, the river yearns for a return to its primordial state, where it can merge with the cosmos and find eternal rest.

6. Describe briefly how does the river know the ‘immortality of water’?

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

7. Explain one ritual associated with the tribes of the poet’s hometown.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

8. What according to the speaker marks the days of childhood?

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

9. How has the speaker contrasted the transient nature of human life with the eternity of nature?

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

10. How has the speaker used imagery to depict nature in the poem?

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

Long Question Answers :

1. How has the poet presented a contrast between the human life and nature?

Answer :- The poet intricately weaves a tapestry of contrasts between the ephemeral nature of human life and the enduring rhythm of nature, epitomized by the river. Human existence, with its transient emotions and fleeting moments, is sharply juxtaposed against the timeless flow of the river, symbolizing the eternal cycle of life, death, and rebirth. This stark dichotomy serves to underscore the impermanence of human concerns in the face of nature’s timeless beauty and resilience. While human emotions ebb and flow like the tide, nature remains steadfast, offering solace and renewal even amidst the most profound grief. Through this poignant contrast, the poet invites readers to contemplate the fleeting nature of human life against the backdrop of the everlasting rhythms of the natural world. The river, with its ceaseless flow, becomes a metaphor for the immutable forces of nature, highlighting the transience of human existence in the face of nature’s enduring legacy. In essence, the poet’s portrayal of this stark dichotomy prompts readers to reflect on the ephemeral nature of human experiences amidst the eternal embrace of nature.

2: Discuss the aptness of the title of the poem ‘Small Towns and the River?

Answer :- The title “Small Towns and the River” serves as a fitting encapsulation of the poem’s thematic essence, evoking imagery of quaint rural communities intimately intertwined with the flow of nature. It suggests a symbiotic relationship between human settlements and their natural surroundings, particularly emphasizing the vital role of the river as a lifeline for these small towns. The title conveys a sense of interconnectedness, emphasizing the pivotal influence of the river in shaping the identity and rhythm of these communities. It conjures images of idyllic countryside settings, where the pulse of life resonates with the gentle cadence of flowing waters. Through the title, the poet lays the groundwork for an exploration of the intimate bond between human habitation and the natural world, highlighting the profound impact of the river on the lives and experiences of those who dwell along its banks. 

3. Discuss the how has the poet used the river as a metaphor to depict the theme of the poem.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

4. The poem, ‘Small Towns and the River’ begins on a sombre note but ends on an optimistic note. Discuss.

Answer :-  For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

5. Do you agree with the poet’s description of the contrast between small towns and the river to bring out the theme of her poem? Give reasons to support your answer.

Answer :- For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]6.How does the poem depict the beliefs and customs of the Adi tribe?

Answer :-For Full Answers Get The Workbook Answers PDF – View ]

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