Page No: 95
Before you Read
Q1. What does the title of the poem suggests to you? What do you think the poem is about?
Answer:- The title of the poem suggests the importance of silence. The poem is about the importance of self-examination and introspection. It is also an appeal for universal harmony.
Page No: 96
Think it Out
Q1. What will counting up to twelve and keeping still help us achieve?
Answer:- Counting up to twelve takes very short time. Keeping still for this brief interval of time gives us a momentary pause to introspect and review the course of action. It is generally observed that most of the ills and troubles of the world are caused by our rush or hurry. Violence is caused by anger. Keeping quiet and still will give us necessary respite and ensure peace.
Q2. Do you think the poet advocates total inactivity and death?
Answer:- No, he doesn’t advocate either total inactivity or death. He makes it quite clear that ‘stillness’ should not be confused with ‘total inactivity’ or equated to it. Total inactivity brings death. But Neruda has ‘no truck with death’. His stillness means halting of harmful and hostile human activities.
Q3. What is the ‘sadness’ that the poet refers to in the poem?
Answer:- The poet refers to the ‘sadness’ of failing to understand oneself in the monotonous every day existence. He also finds it sad that the humanity is moving towards its own ruin owing to its unanalyzed actions. He regrets the rush of outdoing others that has made us forget the values of humanity.
Q4. What symbol from Nature does the poet invoke to say that there can be life under apparent stillness?
Answer:- The poet uses the symbol of the earth to illustrate the point that there can be life under apparent stillness.
Keeping Quiet Extra Questions and Answers
Keeping Quiet Short Answer Questions
Q1. In the poem ‘Keeping Quiet’, what is the appeal made by the poet?
Answer:- The poet appeals the people to keep quiet for a short time. This would help them take stock of their mindless activities and conduct self-analysis. All this will help save mankind from its imminent doom.
Q2. “Under the apparent stillness there is life.” Justify this statement giving an example from the poem, ‘Keeping Quiet’.
Answer:- The poet says that just as there will be life below the snow once it melts, similarly, there will be life even in the apparent stillness.
Q3. What are the different kinds of wars mentioned in the poem? What is Neruda’s attitude towards these wars?
Answer:- Green wars – cutting the trees, war with environment; war with gas—chemical or nuclear; war with fire, and war with ammunition. Every type of war is useless and must be given up. Whenever there is victory after a war, there are no survivors. War is only destructive.
Q4. When everything seems dead, what remains alive?
Answer:- When everything seems dead, only the earth remains alive.
Q5. What is ‘the fisherman’ symbolic of?
Answer:- The fisherman symbolises man’s indiscriminate exploitation of nature for his vested interests.
Q6. How can suspension of activities help?
Answer:- The poet believes that suspension of activities will allow men to introspect, which can help them by solving many of the problems based on caste, religion and nationality.
Q7. According to the poet, what is that human beings can learn from nature?
Answer:- Life under apparent stillness in attitude is important. Just like nature carries on its work even when there is stillness all around, similarly, stillness in attitude will help in retrospection.
Q8. ‘Life is what it is all about; How is keeping quiet related to life?
Answer:- Keeping quiet helps people pursue their goals single-mindedly. They need to understand that silence is productive and stillness is progress.
Q9. Why does one feel ‘a sudden strangeness’ on counting to twelve and keeping quiet?
Answer:- The absence of hustle and bustle of life would create feeling of peace and quietness, which would make us united in our natural commitment. It will create a strange feeling of universal brotherhood.
Q10. How will ‘keeping quiet’ protect our environment?
Answer:- Keeping quiet will stop man’s indiscriminate exploitation of nature for his vested interests. In this moment of inactivity, fishermen will not harm the whales.
Q11. How would keeping quiet affect life in and around the sea?
Answer:- Keeping quiet will prevent sea life from being harmed and the person collecting salt would look at his hurt hands. It will thus, help in maintaining an ecological balance and give everyone some time to introspect.
Q12. How is the earth a source of life when all seems dead on it?
Answer:- The seeds that lie dormant throughout winter germinate or spring to life with the arrival of spring. It appears as if nature is celebrating life.
Q13.According to Pablo Neruda, how would keeping quiet be an exotic moment?
Answer:- According to Pablo Neruda, when everything comes to a standstill, it would be a rare moment. No one would rush, no engines running. No one would harm any other organism. All would be calm and quiet reflecting upon their lives and introspecting.
Q14.What are green wars? Who wage them and with what result?
Answer:- Green wars mean war against environment or environmental degradation. It is waged by the people who exploit the nature for commercial use and the soldiers. It results in damage to the environment and ultimately harming humans.
Q15.According to Pablo Neruda, what do we not do when we keep quiet?
Answer:- When we keep quiet, we will not be in any rush, the people will not harm any other living organisms and will not harm the environment. When we keep quiet, we will not do anything.
NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Others Chapter
NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Flamingo Prose
- Chapter 1 The Last Lesson
- Chapter 2 Lost Spring
- Chapter 3 Deep Water
- Chapter 4 The Rattrap
- Chapter 5 Indigo
- Chapter 6 Poets and Pancakes
- Chapter 7 The Interview
- Chapter 8 Going Places
NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Flamingo Poetry
- Poem 1 My Mother at Sixty-six
- Poem 2 An Elementary School Classroom in a Slum
- Poem 3 Keeping Quiet
- Poem 4 A Thing of Beauty
- Poem 5 A Roadside Stand
- Poem 6 Aunt Jennifer’s Tigers