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THE RIVER by Valerie Bloom The River's a wanderer, A nomad, a tramp, He doesn't choose one place To set up his camp. The River's a winder, Through valley and hill He twists and he turns, He just cannot be still. The River's a hoarder, And he buries down deep Those little treasures That he wants to keep. The River's a baby, He gurgles and hums, And sounds like he's happily Sucking his thumbs. The River's a singer, As he dances along, The countryside echoes The notes of his song. The River's a monster Hungry and vexed, He's gobbled up trees And he'll swallow you next. 1

Asaimen Bi Kak Nor

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THE RIVER by Valerie Bloom The River's a wanderer, A nomad, a tramp, He doesn't choose one place To set up his camp. The River's a winder, Through valley and hill He twists and he turns, He just cannot be still. The River's a hoarder, And he buries down deep Those little treasures That he wants to keep. The River's a baby, He gurgles and hums, And sounds like he's happily Sucking his thumbs. The River's a singer, As he dances along, The countryside echoes The notes of his song. The River's a monster Hungry and vexed, He's gobbled up trees And he'll swallow you next.


SYNOPSIS The River is about the many faces of a river. The river is a wanderer where he moves all over the place. He does not sit still and is always in motion. He is also a winder where he twists and turns. He meanders. He is also a hoarder where he keeps things deep down in his river bed. Sometimes, he is a baby when he is happily flowing along. At times, he is a singer as seen through the happy sounds of the water. Finally, he is also a monster and can devour trees (most probably referring to a flood)

THEMES 1. The River is a Natural Source of Water The river is a natural source of water. It is an important element in the water cycle. It balances the ecosystem. Therefore, many living things depend on the river to get their source of water. Water is an important basic need for all living things. Many living things such as plants, animals and human beings will die without water.

2. The River is a Natural Source of Life The river is also a natural source of life. It is considered to bury little treasures that help to support living organisms such as animals, human beings and plants.


On the other hand, when the river water overflows, the surrounding areas are flooded. This natural phenomenon provides a rich source of fertile soil to farmers to grow their crops as well as helps them to irrigate their farms. This in turn provides us with different sources of food for our daily life.

3. The river causes natural disasters In Stanza 6, the poet warns that the river can at times cause natural disasters. Hence, the river is described as a monster, hungry and vexed. This usually happens when there is a heavy downpour which causes the river to overflow its banks. It displays its power and rage as it gobbles up or destroys and uproots trees. Sometimes, the rivers wrath can be seen when lives, properties and livelihood is lost. This is nothing that Man is unable to control.

4. Man has both positive and negative qualities Man, like the river, has his positive and negative qualities. Therefore, we must accept people with their strengths and limitations.

PERSONA The voice used in the poem The River is a he, which is the third person pronoun. The persona describes what he sees, feels and hears about the river.


Some of the descriptions relate to his lifes experiences and knowledge about how a river flows upstream to downstream.

The persona provides details about where the river starts; meandering through the hills and valleys and finally, ending up in the sea or ocean.

Apart from being gentle, the persona also warns that the river can be destructive to both nature and Man.

Language and Style The poem consists of six stanzas. Each stanza has four lines.There is a rhyming scheme in the poem. Every second and fourth line in each stanza rhymes: Stanza 2 The Rivers a winder, Through valley and hill He twists and he turns, He just cannot be still. From the stanza above, the word hill rhymes with still.

Stanza 3 The Rivers hoarder, And he buries down deep Those little treasures That he wants to keep From the stanza above, the word deep rhymes with keep.


The rhyme scheme used by the poet is a-b-c-b. in other words, the last word in Line 2 rhymes with the last word in Line 4.

LITERARY DEVICES Metaphor One literary device used in this poem is the metaphor. The poet shows similarities between the river and human beings. The river is described as being a wanderer, hoarder, baby, singer, dancer and monster. The poet also uses the river as a metaphor to describe our own journey through life. Just like the river, we start our journey when we are born. Then we grow up and gradually learn about things and begin to face more challenges. This part is described in the poem when the river meanders through hills and valleys. Next, as we mature we have our ups and downs, happy and sad moments. This is described in Stanza 4 and 5. Then again, sometimes we behave like monsters and lose our tempers and hurt or destroy others with our actions. This is like when the river turns into a monster and causes destruction. Personification The second literary device used is personification. Even though the writer talks about the river yet she has been able to give it human-like abilities, functions and feelings.


This is referred to as personification. The poem clearly shows, describes and gives ample examples of human characteristics.

Some of these include being a wanderer like a nomad and a tramp. The river is also a hoarder that buries little treasures and does not want to part with them. Then the river moves on and becomes a baby who is happily sucking his thumbs and then as a dancer, the river sings and dances along the countryside. Finally, the river is described as a monster that has no mercy.

Contrast The third literary device used is making contrasts. Here the poet shows the contrasting characteristics of the river. o One moment the river is gentle like a baby and at other times, it rears its ugly head and becomes a monster ready to destroy nature. o Through this technique, the poet shows that the river is just like us, it has both positive and negative characteristics. Imagery Imagery refers to images that we can see when we read and understand the poem. o In this poem, Valerie has successfully painted a vivid picture of the river and these images are clearly imprinted in our minds as we read the poem. For examples: Stanza 16

o The image we conjure up is that of a wanderer like a nomad or tramp who moves around and cannot sit still. Stanza 2 o The image formed is that of a river slowly winding down hill, twisting and turning. Stanza 3 o The river is described like a hoarder who buries invaluable treasures beneath it. Stanza 4 o The river is described just like a baby who is sucking on his thumbs. The baby also makes happy gurgling and humming sounds. Stanza 5 o The river becomes a singer who dances along to the song which echoes throughout the countryside. Stanza 6 o An ugly image of the river is painted. It is described as a monster that hungrily swallows up trees and human beings.


I WONDER by Jeannie Kirby I wonder by Jeannie Kirby I wonder why the grass is green And why to each other were often mean? Who taught us how to curse and hate? And lead us to betray our faith? Why cant we learn to live and love? And give all praises to him above Why must we strive to put others down? Why not wear a smile instead of a frown. Must we forever devise new ways? To hurt each other instead of praise? For arent we all the same in his sight Dont we all rise in the morn and sleep at night? For who amongst us has not shed a tear Or hurt by another who never seemed to care. And which of us has not done the same To hurt another or caused some shame. When shall we learn to let go of the past And live each day like its our very last? Which will you be, an foe or a friend? Would you still hate today, if this was your end?



I wonder why the grass is green, And why the wind is never seen The writer was questioning about why the color of the grass is green and not other colors. He also did question about why the wind cannot be seen. As we know, we can feel the wind blows and pass us by everyday in our lives. The writer most probably would be a small kid, because children only knows that physical contacts only can be created when an object touches another. For writer in this case, he/she needs something to be made as evidence of why he can feel the wind blowing. Who taught the birds to build a nest, And told the trees to take a rest? This particular kid (person) questioned why the bird that he saw was building a nest for itself though the kid knew that no one or no other creatures did teach the bird to do so. He also knew that animals do not possess the wisdom to invent something on their own. In this situation, he did not know that it is just the nature of animals to seek for protection and safe place to hide. As the time turns to sunset and about to be night time, the kid wondered why the trees stopped producing oxygen and why they were doing so and on whose order. And when the moon is not quite round, Where can the missing bit be found? Because the whole daytime has been windy, the kid then questioned why he could not see moon anywhere at the sky because at the moment, it was about to rain and the


clouds already covered the skies up. He did not know that the rain comes from the process of condensation and needs the clouds to turn the air to liquid (rainwater). Who lights the stars, when they blow out, And makes the lightning flash about? As he could see the stars that were shining at the skies, they questioned how they shine and how they could be so bright at the night time. He only knew that light and brightness only comes from things that are burning and fired up by human being themselves. Lightning that stroked many times during the moment caught his attention because no one create lightning and makes them appear at the sky. Who paints the rainbow in the sky, And hangs the fluffy clouds so high? The day after, the kid could see the rainbow appeared at the sky and the formation of the colors of the rainbow makes him guessing of who painted and designed such organized pattern of colors. After the rain, the clouds rise up higher because they are fluffier now, light and softer, free from the water particles and reveal the beautiful colors of the rainbow. Why is it now, do you suppose, That Dad wont tell me if he knows? Last of all, the kid questioned all the readers why his father (Dad) did not tell him if his Dad ever knew of why all the panoramas that he had seen happened before his own eyes. It is because the kid himself is still a young child, nave, and innocent and his father might not tell him because afraid that he would not understand of how nature really works.


THEME 1. Curiosity of a child a. Children are by nature inquisitive and they like to ask questions. 2. The wonders of nature a. The poem shows readers of how majestic and awe-inspiring nature can be for those who take the time to stop and appreciate it. 3. The thirst for knowledge a. Humans, by nature, are inquisitive beings. We have the innate drive to seek knowledge and information to better ourselves.

LITERARY DEVICE Point of view o First person The title and the first two words of 'I Wonder' show us that the poem is told from a first person point of view. Setting o Outdoors The speaker was describing the events that one can see out in the open space.


Tone o Inquisitive The repetition of interrogative wh- words lends an inquisitive tone to 'I Wonder.'

Mood o Puzzlement The inquisitive nature of the speaker incites the feeling of puzzlement in readers as there is a high possibility that many cannot answer the questions posed by the speaker.

Poetic Devices 1. Alliteration a. grass green b. birds build c. tree - take a rest 2. Direct speech Hearing the speaker's questions first hand gives readers a clearer picture of the challenging time that they will have in answering the speaker's questions thus intensifying the mood of puzzlement. 3. End rhyme a. Stanza 1 : green, seen b. Stanza 2: nest, rest c. Stanza 3: round, found12

d. Stanza 4: out, about e. Stanza 5: sky, high f. Stanza 6: suppose, knows 4. Imagery a. Visual imagery = sense of sight i. Grass, birds, trees, moon, stars, lightning, rainbows, and clouds. 5. Personification a. the trees - have the ability to rest b. the stars - have the ability to blow out the light 6. Repetition a. The words, 'why' and 'who' are repeated twice and thrice respectively. The repetition of the interrogative wh- words reinforces that the speaker's curiosity is not just a fleeting fancy but is a matter that constantly bugs the speaker.


SIMILARITIES 1. Both of these poems are about nature. 2. These poems have 6 stanzas for each poem

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN TWO POEMS I WONDER 1. 2 lines in every stanzas 2. Questions about the unique THE RIVER 1. A lines in every stanza 2.Telling about the unique

characteristics of nature

characteristics of nature

3. The




3. The subject is only river

e.g : grass, wind, birds, trees, moon, stars, rainbow, clouds

4. The rhyme is aa

4. The rhyme is abcb


REFLECTION First of all, thanks to our God because give me a chance to do this coursework. Next, to my family that always support me to further up my study and to complete this task. During doing this task, Ive had learn many things about literature. As a teacher or formerly as religious teacher, I didnt notice what is important of literature to kid or student, furthermore English Literature. But, after done this task, more and more knowledge about literature that I get. I had knew each poem that been written by a famous writers had their deeply meaning and message. Besides that, from the task that Ive done, I can get know many great poem writers which I had never know before this. But, l also have a weakness while complete this task. Firstly is about my vocabulary and my experience in doing a coursework. Im usually speak in Malay and studied literature also in Malay which is my mother tounge, but while Im trying to challenge myself to complete this task which all in English, I had found a difficulties. Literary meaning sometimes never same with standard English sentence meaning. I need to search in internet or ask for a help from my English Teacher in my school to discover the meaning of the poem or some sentences. Thats all what I get when I doing this task. I hope, I can further my knowledge besides can use this knowledge for my pupils to improve their skills of learnings.


REFERENCES A collection of Poems, Short Stories and Dramas Form 1 to Form 3, 2009 , Ministry of Education Malaysia, Shah Alam, Selangor I wonder by Jeanne Kirby ( 2009, Sep 24 ), I wonder by Jeanne Kirby, retrieved 18 March 2012 from http://pencps.blogspot.com/2009/09/i-wonder-by-jeanne-kirby.html I wonder bu Jeanne Kirby (2010, June 1 ), I wonder by Jeanne Kirby retrieved 18 March 2012 from http://biteenglish.blogspot.com/2010/06/i-wonder-by-jeannie-kirby.html