Summary: This poem is about mirror. It can also be said that this poem is about the character of mirror. Mirrors are shiny and show exactly what is before them. Mirrors have no prejudices. They are not cruel but only show the truth. The mirror continuously stares at the opposite wall. They have been seeing each other for such a long period that both appear to belong to each other. Their face to face interaction is only disturbed when there is no light or when someone is standing to see his/her appearance in the mirror. The mirror is like a four-eyed God which watches us unbiased and from all angles. A lady comes in front of the mirror. The lady has been doing this since ages. For her, the mirror becomes a lake and she searches her true personality in the fathomless depth of the lake. She had lost her childhood and her youth in this mirror. Every day, the old age is menacingly advancing towards that lady like a terrible fish. Like everyone, the lady can also see in the mirror that her end is approaching her.
Question 1: When the mirror is being described as being 'unmisted by love or dislike' we understand that the mirror is
Question 2: The other word for 'contemplation' is………..
Question 3: When the mirror says 'it has no preconceptions' it means that:
Question 4: The mirror has been called 'a four-cornered god' because:
Question 5: The 'speckles' refer to:
Question 6: The phrase 'agitation of the hand' suggests that the person is:
Question 7: By saying 'Now I am a lake' the narrator wants to show that
Question 1: What is the poetic device used when the mirror says 'I swallow'?
Answer: In this case, the poet has used a metaphor. A mirror does not reject anything rather accepts everything which is presented in front of it.
Question 2: How does the mirror usually pass its time?
Answer: The mirror most passes most of its time by staring at the opposite wall. It has been doing that since so long that the wall appears like an inseparable part of the mirror.
Question 3: What disturbs the mirror's contemplation of the opposite wall?
Answer: Two things disturb the mirror’s contemplation of the opposite wall. One of them is darkness and another is someone standing in front of the mirror.
Question 4: Why does the mirror appear to be a lake in the second stanza? What aspect of the mirror do you think is being referred to here?
Answer: Like a lake, a mirror is very deep and hides so many secrets and mysteries in its innards. A mirror is the place where someone may have lost her childhood, her youth, or her innocence. Whatever is lost in this depth is lost forever. You cannot recover your past from the depth of a mirror.
Question 5: What is the woman searching for in the depths of the lake?
Answer: The woman is searching her true personality in the mirror. She knows that those who appreciate her beauty are liars and only the mirror can tell the truth.
Question 6: How does the narrator convey the fact that the woman looking at her reflection in the lake is deeply distressed?
Answer: When she looks in the mirror, she waves her hands frantically. This shows that the lady must be deeply distressed.
Question 7: What makes the woman start crying?
Answer: When the lady discovers that mirror is showing nothing but the truth, she begins to cry. She is crying because she is glad that the mirror had been faithful to her.
Question 8: What do you think the 'terrible fish' in the last line symbolizes? What is the poetic device used here?
Answer: The poet has used ‘terrible fish’ as a metaphor. In this case, advancing age is the terrible fish. All of us age every day and cannot escape the harsh fact that one day all of us shall become too old, too weak and too unattractive.
Question 9: Find the various instances of personification used in this poem.
Answer: The mirror has been personified in many cases. At first, the mirror has been personified as the God who looks at us from all angles. Then the mirror has been personified as a lake which hides so many secrets in its depth.
Question 10: Read the given lines and answer the questions that follow by ticking the correct choice:
A woman bends over me,
Searching my reaches for what she really is.
Then she turns to those liars, the candles or the moon.
What is the woman bending over?
Why have the candles and the moon been called 'liars'?
Why does she turn to them in spite of calling them 'liars'?
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