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The third approached the animal,
And, happening to take
Thus boldly up he spake:
Is very like a snake!”
“What most this wondrous beast is like,
Is very plain,” quoth he:
Is very like a tree!"
The fifth, who chanced to touch the ear,
Said: “E'en the blindest man
Deny the fact who can,
Is very like a fan!"
The sixth no sooner had begun
About the beast to grope,
That fell within his scope,
Is very like a rope!”.
And so these men of Indostan
Disputed loud and long,
Exceeding stiff and strong;
And all were in the wrong.
In'do stan' (in'do stän'), India, a country in Asia; ob sēr vā'tion, taking account of through the senses; mär'vel, wonderful thing; grope, to feel one's way with the hands.
Why did the men go to see the elephant?
Why could they not know what the elephant looked like?
What did the second man touch? The third man? The fourth man? The fifth man?
Were they far from the truth?
Which do you think was farthest from finding out what the elephant was like?
Did each one believe he was right?
SIR WALTER SCOTT
Hie away, hie away!
Hie, go quickly; brāe, hillside; copse'wood' (kops'wood'), underwood; black cock' (blák kok'), male of the black grouse, a game bird of the British Isles; trips, runs lightly.
Try to picture clearly the scenes to which you are asked to "hie away.
Read aloud so as to express the light, joyous spirit one would have going on such an excursion.
JAMES RUSSELL LOWELL
Into the sunshine,
Full of the light, Leaping and flashing
From morn till night;
Into the moonlight,
Whiter than snow, Waving so flower-like
When the winds blow;
Into the starlight
Rushing in spray, Happy at midnight,
Happy by day;
Ever in motion,
Blithesome and cheery, Still climbing heavenward,
Glad of all weathers,
Still seeming best, Upward or downward,
Motion thy rest;
Full of a nature
Nothing can tame, Changed every moment,
Ever the same;
Let my heart be
Upward, like thee!
Blithe'some, joyous; às pir'ing, seeking for that which is higher: cease'less (sēs'lès), without stopping. STUDY HELPS
Read this poem two or three times, noticing the short lines and the quick, light movement of the language.
În what three kinds of light does the poet let you picture the fountain? Just how does it appear in each case?
What word in stanza 3 sums up the fountain's nature?
Stanzas 4, 5, 6, and 7 describe the fountain by naming all the qualities or characteristics that belong to it. Make a list of all these qualities in the order in which they are named.
Do you think the qualities mentioned are sufficient to justify the poet in calling it a “glorious fountain”? Try to explain why.
What appeal does the poet make to the fountain in stanza 8?
Do you think it would be a good thing to be filled with the spirit of this fountain?
After answering all these questions, read the entire poem aloud so as to express its spirit.
A happy man or woman is a better thing to find than a five-pound note. He or she is a radiating focus of good-will; and their entrance into a room is as though another candle had been lighted.
ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON