NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Flamingo Poem 5 A Roadside Stand

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A Roadside Stand NCERT Solutions for Class 12 English Flamingo Poem 5

Before you Read

Q.Have you ever stopped at a roadside stand? What have you observed there?

Answer :The poet believes that when we encounter a beautiful thing, even for a small moment, the pleasure remains with us forever. It leaves a lasting impression that inspires us to live life with hope and optimism.


A Roadside Stand NCERT Text Book Questions and Answers

A Roadside Stand Think it out

Q1. The city folk who drove through the countryside hardly paid any heed to the roadside stand or to the people who ran it. If at all they did, it was to complain. Which lines bring this out? What was their complaint about?

Answer:The lines that bring out the irritation of the passers-by are:
Or if ever aside a moment, the out of sorts
At having the landscape marred….
They complained that the disfigured paint of the stall spoilt the beauty of the landscape, the signposts pointed the wrong way and the stalls were not maintained.

Q2. What was the plea of the folk who had put up the roadside stand?

Answer :The rural folks pleaded pathetically for some customers to stop by and buy some of their
goods. City folks used to pass by on this road and hence the rural folk set up the roadside
stand to attract their attention and sell their goods.

Q3. The government and other social service agencies appear to help the poor rural people, but actually do them no good. Pick out the words and phrases the poet uses to show their double standards.

Answer:The poet uses the word ‘greedy good-doers, beneficent beasts of prey’ and ‘enforcing benefits that are calculated’.

Q4. What is the ‘childish longing’ that the poet refers to? Why is it ‘vain’?

Answer :The poet thinks that the persons who are running the roadside stand, suffer from a childish longing. They are always expecting customers and waiting for their prospective customers. They keep their windows open to attract them. They become sad when no one turns up. They are always waiting to hear the squeal of brakes, the sound of a stopping car. But all their efforts go in vain.

Q5. Which lines tell us about the insufferable pain that the poet feels at the thought of the plight of the rural people?

Answer:The lines that express the poet’s insufferable pain are:
I wonder how I should like you to come to me
And offer to put me gently out of my pain.


A Roadside Stand Extra Questions and Answers

Q1.What is the untold sorrow of the owners of the roadside stand?

Answer:The untold sorrow of the roadside stand owners is that nobody pays attention to the efforts of the country folk to make some money. The city folk just pass by their stalls without helping them to maike some money. Their lives have not progressed at all as they merely earn to survive.

Q2. What is the poet’s complaint in the poem?

Answer:The poet does not complain like passers-by that the landscape has been marred. He is complaining about the lack of opportunity and encouragement to these people in the countryside. He is upset about the sorrow of those who had set up the roadside stall in the hope that people would stop by and some money would tickle into their palms.

Q3. Why do country people ask for money?

Answer:The country people ask for money to improve their lives. They set up stalls on (he roadside in the hope that they would make some money by selling goods of daily use and make their life better, as they had seen in movies and as had been promised by the party in power.

Q4. What was the news that was doing the rounds?

Answer:There was news that the people in power were planning to move all these rural people to the city next to the theatre and the big stores. Their lives would be secured and they would not have to worry about themselves any longer. They were promised that they would soon be pulled out of their poverty.

Q5. How would the innocent be soothed out of their wits?

Answer:The selfish good-doers would outwit the simple innocent people into believing that their intentions and efforts were for their improvement, while they would be seeking their own profits from the labour of these folks.

Q6. Why are the cars called ‘selfish’?

Answer:The poet has used a transferred epithet here. He actually means to call the car owners selfish as they just pass by without a thought for the plight of the owners of the roadside stands and if at all they do stop, it is either to complain or to turn their car round.

Q7.What is the sadness that lurks near the open window there?

Answer:The poet is referring to the disappointed faces that wait in vain at their stall windows for someone to ask for their wares and drop some money in their palm. But their hopes for a better living are belied.

Q8.What is the open prayer made by the country folk?

Answer:The country folk make an open appeal to the city dwellers that they should not be selfish. They expectantly pray for the city cars to stop at their roadside stand and help them lead a better life.

Q9.What is the trusting sorrow? What remains unsaid?

Answer:The country folk trust their rich brethren in the city to come to their help but they feel sad when their trust is breached by the city people through their indifference. Although the city people have said nothing but their silence speaks volumes about their cold and indifferent attitude to the rural poor, who feel hurt by it.

Q10.Which things irritated those passers-by who stopped at the roadside stand?

Answer:The passers-by got irritated by the tastelessly painted roadside stand. The thought that the artless decor of the stand was in disharmony with their surroundings and it had destroyed the scenic beauty of the landscape. Even their ‘N’ and ‘S’ on the signboards was wrongly presented. They did not approve of the things offered for sale.

Q11.Why did the people driving along the highway think that the landscape was marred?

Answer:The people driving along the highway objected to the tastelessly painted roadside stand. They thought that the artless decor of the stand was in disharmony with the surroundings and had destroyed the scenic beauty of the landscape. Although the shed had been recently renovated but it could never impress the city dwellers. They were always critical and felt that these unhygienically maintained roadside stands marred the beautiful mountain scene.

Q12.Who actually stopped near the sheds put up by the farmers at the edges of the road?

Answer:The poet states clearly that three cars stopped but none inquired about the prices of the farmer’s produce. One car stopped to reverse and another asked the way to where it was bound. The third foolishly asked if they could sell it a gallon of gas.

Q13.What would be the great relief for the poet in reference to these village folks?

Answer:The poet says loudly that he would be happy to own the great relief if the pains of these people were removed at one stroke. Obviously, he is much moved by their pathetic plight of life. He wants something to be done to improve their lives economically.

Q14.What hope does the poet nurture about himself when he asks that these people should be put at one stroke out of their pain?

Answer:The poet hopes that these people are put at one stroke out of their pain. The poet wants that the authorities should come to him and offer to put him ‘gently out of my pain’. The poet identifies himself with the village folks as far as their economic conditions are concerned.

Q15.What is the poet’s attitude to the good-doers and why is it so?

Answer:The poet condemns the good-doers for they actually take away the villagers’ freedoms to think for themselves. They force benefits on them which lull them into doing nothing and destroy their peace of mind and their lives. He criticizes them for exploiting the villagers for their own gains.

Q16What different attitudes do the city dwellers display to the country people?

Answer:The city dwellers are indifferent to the plight of the country people and ignore the stands selling their goods. They get irritated with them for spoiling the landscape with their wrong signboards. They also exploit them for their selfish gains by offering them hollow charity which spoils their lives.

Q17.On what occasions do the country people express their anger at the city elite?

Answer:The country people get angry with the city elite when, despite having money, they do not buy any of their goods. Again when a car stops and asks for gas which they obviously do not have, but does not ask the price of what they are actually selling.

Q18.What do the country people want?

Answer:The country people want a share in the wealth enjoyed by the city people which they also have a right to, so that they can improve their conditions and lead better lives just as those promised by the movies and which the government has denied them.

Q19.Why are the country folks disappointed?

Answer:The country folks have put up a roadside stand to sell their wares to the city dwellers. They desperately hope to earn some city money so that they could support their lives with it. They are disappointed because the city dwellers rush away in their polished cars with their minds focused only on their destination. If ever they pause, they are rather critical in their comments. They complain that the roadside stand had marred the scenic beauty of the landscape.

Q20.Bring out the contrast between the urban rich and the rural poor.

Answer:The urban rich are on the move, they are in a hurry, they are speeding looking ahead. They have no time to inquire about the goods put up by rural poor for sale. On the other hand, the rural poor are standing and pleading for help.

Q21.How does the poet describe the double standards of the government and other social service agencies towards the poor rural people?

Answer:The poet is sad that the government which came into power had many promises for the wellbeing of rural poor folks. But it and other social agencies did nothing for that. These poor rural people put up their roadside stands to sell what they produce. But no passer-by buys them. The poet feels much pain at their poor plight.


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