Class 11 Alternative English Chapter 3 Life And Learning

The Listeners – Walter De La Mare

Chapter : 3

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Q.1) Why did the traveller knock at the door? 

Ans: The traveler knocked at the door and wanted to get in because he had promised to meet the residents of the house. 

Q.2) Did anyone answer his knock? 

And: No one answered his knock. 

Q.3) What does the poet refer to as the ‘voice from the world of men’?

Ans: The voice of traveller is referred as the voice from the world of men. 

Q.4) Explain the phrase ‘perplexed and still’ ?

Ans: The phrase ‘perplexed and still’ means puzzled and motionless. The poet uses this phrase to show that the traveler was confused and puzzled but he remained motionless.

Q.5) What time of the  day is described in the poem? Pick out the words that suggest this. 

Ans: The time described in the poem is night. The words suggest that it was night are: Moonlit door; moonlight; moonbeams; starred and leafy sky; shadowiness, one man left awake. 

Q.6) What is the effect created by the words ‘The silence surged softly backward’? 

Ans: ‘The silence surged softly backward ‘indicates that it was mysteriously still again when the traveller quickly moved forward. The place became silent.

Reference to the context 

Q.1) And his horse in the silence chomped the grasses of the forest’s ferny floor.

And a bird flew up out of the torrent, 

Above the traveller’s head :

(a) What does ‘his’ refer to? 

Ans:’His’ refers to the traveller’s. 

(b) What has disturbed the bird from its nest in the turret? 

Ans:The knocking at the door by the traveller has disturbed the bird from its nest in the turret. 

(c) Which part of the country is the traveller in? 

Ans:The traveller is in the hilly part of the country. 

(d) What is he doing here? 

Ans:He is trying to call and meet the dwellers of the house. 

Q.2) But only a host of phantom listeners

That dwell in the lone house then

Stood listening in the quiet of the moonlight 

To that voice from the world of men:

Stood thronging the faint moonbeams on the dark stair that goes down to the empty hall, 

Hearkening in an air stirred and shaken

By the lonely Traveller’s call. 

(a) Who are the ‘host of phantom listener’s? 

Ans:The ghosts in that lonely house are the ‘host of phantom listeners’. 

(b) What were they listening to? 

Ans:They were listening to the voice of the traveller. 

(c) Whose is the ‘voice from the world of men ‘? Explain the phrase. 

Ans:It is the traveller’s voice which referred in the phrase ‘voice from the world of men.’

(d) Who stood ‘throughing the faint  moon beams on the dark stair’? 

Ans:The ghost stood ‘throughing the faint moonbeams beams on the dark stair.’

Q.3)Aye,they heard his foot upon the stirrup, 

And the sound of iron on stone, 

And how the silence surged softly backward, 

when the plunging hoofs were gone. 

(a) Who are the  ‘they’ mentioned in these lines? 

Ans:The ghosts are the ‘they’mentioned in these lines. 

(b) Where does the sound ‘of iron on stone’ come from? 

And:The sound ‘of iron on stone’ comes from the hoofs of the horse and stonny road as a result of the galloping of the horse fast. 

(c) Why do you think the person is in such a hurry? 

And: Because the person wants to go away from the places as soon as possible.

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