KSEEB Solutions for Class 8 English Poem Chapter 11 After Apple-picking

Students can Download English Poem 11 After Apple-picking Questions and Answers, Summary, Notes Pdf, KSEEB Solutions for Class 8 English Karnataka State Board Solutions help you to revise complete Syllabus and score more marks in your examinations.

Karnataka State Board Class 8 English Poem Chapter 11 After Apple-picking

After Apple-picking Questions and Answers, Summary, Notes

Comprehension:

A. Answer the following questions in one sentence each:

Question 1.
Why does the poet say that he is done with apple-picking?
Answer:
The poet says that he is done with apple-picking though there are a few still to be picked, because he starts feeling drowsy.

Question 2.
What meaning is conveyed through the expression, “instep arch keeps the ache”?
Answer:
The apple picker still feels the ache in his foot as if he is standing on a ladder.

Question 3.
What does the poet see in his dreams?
Answer:
The narrator sees the harvest in his dream.

Question 4.
Which phrase in the poem suggests that the poet has had bumper harvest?
Answer:
‘The rumbling sound
Of load on load of apples coming in.’
‘For I have had too much Of apple picking.’
‘Of the great harvest I myself desired.
There were ten thousand thousand fruit to touch’.

Question 5.
What helps the poet in balancing his weight on the ladder-round?
Answer:
The instep arch of his feet.

Question 6.
What is the meaning of “fleck of russet”?
Answer:
‘Fleck of russet’ means a very small area of reddish brown colour depicting the colour of the apple.

B. Answer in three or four sentences each:

Question 1.
Why can’t the poet rub strangeness from his sight?
Answer:
At the end of a long day of apple-picking, the narrator is tired and thinks about his day. He has felt sleepy and even trance-like since the early morning, when he looked at the apple trees through a thin sheet of ice that he lifted from the drinking trough. Even in the morning, he was not able to rub strangeness from his sight. So it is clear that his feeling of drowsiness is not the outcome of physical exhaustion alone.

Question 2.
What is implied by the phrase, “just some human sleep”?
Answer:
Human sleep would be the sleep in the night that follows the activities of the day. This is necessary for us to get over the fatigue of the physical work. But the speaker is not sure whether it is the normal sleep of a tired man or the deep winter sleep of death. Significantly, even as he falls into a complete sleep, the narrator is unable to discern if he is dying or merely sleeping; the two are merged completely in the essence of the oncoming winter, and Frost refuses to tell the reader what actually happens.

Question 3.
What does the repeated reference to ‘sleep’ in the poem imply?
Answer:
‘Sleep’ in the poem operates at two levels – natural sleep and death. The hoary grass and winter suggest death. But the narrator does not know if the death will be renewed by spring in a few months or if everything will stay buried under mindless snow for all eternity. In other words, the speaker doesn’t know whether his life is coming to an end or whether it is the usual weariness of physical work.

Question 4.
“For I have had too much
Of apple-picking: I am overtired Of the great harvest / myself desired.”
Explain the above lines.
Answer:
After a hard day of work, the apple farmer is completely fatigued but is still unable to escape the mental act of picking apples. He still sees the apples in front of him. He admits that he himself had desired and dreamt of the great harvest, but is now overwhelmed by the number and leaves a few on the branches without picking.

Question 5.
“For all
That struck the earth,
No matter if not bruised or spiked with stubble,
Went surely to the cider-apple heap
As of no worth. ”
What worth is the poet referring to?
Answer:
The speaker says that the apples should not be allowed to fall, and have to be picked carefully. He knows that the minute apples fall, they lose their value. They are considered to have no worth and are sent to the cider crusher.

C. Answer the following questions in four to six sentences each:

Question 1.
Give the central idea of the poem.
Answer:
In some respects, this poem is simply about apple-picking. After a hard day of work, the apple farmer is completely fatigued but is still unable to escape the mental act of picking apples: he still sees the apples in front of him, still feels the ache in his foot as if he is standing on a ladder, still bemoans the fate of the flawless apples that fall to the ground and must be consigned to the cider press. Yet, as in all of Frost’s poems, the narrator’s everyday act of picking apples also speaks of a more metaphorical discussion of seasonal changes and death.

Question 2.
Justify the title of the poem, ‘After Apple-picking’.
Answer:
The poem ‘After Apple-picking’ is written in the first person; the speaker is someone who has worked long and nard but is now on the verge of being overwhelmed by fatigue and the depth of the experience of picking apples. The details of-his activity are recalled in contemplating the dream he expects to have.

The poem is filled with images drawn from the speaker’s experience with the pastoral world; the events he remembers all took place on a farm, specifically in an apple orchard. He has climbed a ladder to pick apples; even when he has finished, he can almost feel the rungs of the ladder beneath his feet. The smell of the apples is pervasive, and he can still hear the sound of the wagons carrying loads of apples into the barn.

Frost intends to evoke a mood of hesitation and drowsiness, as if the speaker were about to drop off to sleep and is no longer fully in control of his thoughts. He does this in the framework of apple-picking. Thus the title is highly appropriate.

Question 3.
The poet has achieved a bumper crop at the cost of considerable physical and mental exhaustion. Elaborate.
Answer:
The speaker finds that the large harvest for which he had wished has become excessive: He has “had too much/ Of apple picking.” He recalls the details of the work with pleasure, but he is half afraid of the sleep he feels coming on. On the edge of sleep, he remembers not only the ripe apples successfully picked but also those that fell and were considered damaged and had to be sent to the cider mill.

He knows that his sleep will be troubled by the failures more than by the successes. He is not sure about the nature of the sleep he is about to drop into – whether it will be ordinary steep, more like a hibernation, or more like death. All the sensory images are pleasant, but they have become distorted, as if the pleasant dream could become a nightmare. Thus we see that even the bumper crop is at the cost of considerable physical and mental exhaustion.

Additional Questions:

Question 1.
Why does the speaker think that his dreams will be ‘troubled7
Answer:
Though Robert Frost insists that the poem is written purely in context of a rural aspect and it shows nothing more than the beauty of nature prevailing upon human mind, intellect and will, yet the poem does allude to certain extended meanings. Hence when the speaker says that his sleep will trouble his dreams, it leads to multiple interpretations. The sleep of the peasant could either be related to death or to intoxication since the apple picker is ‘drowsing’ under the appeasing influence of mighty nature, if it is the human sleep, it is relief from physical exhaustion. But if it is death, apple-picking which is not complete can refer to unfulfilled promises, tasks, dreams and talents.

Question 2.
How does the woodchuck’s sleep differ from “Just some human sleep”?
Answer:
A woodchuck is an animal that hibernates during the winter and then reawakens during the spring. The speaker is saying that his sleep will be longer than that because he will actually be dead and never reawake.

Question 3.
What does the empty barrel signify?
Answer:
The empty barrel as well as the ‘magnified apples’ refer to human desires which may never be satiated to their fill. Sometimes, one may even have achieved lifelong goals and targets, but life does not stay longer to support one to relish the fruits of one’s labour. However, if the empty barrel implies only the unfulfilled desire, the magnified apples could also imply the lust of man which can never be satisfied.

Question 4.
What does ‘sleep’ mean here?
Answer:
Physical fatigue, mental emptiness and death.

Question 5.
What does the ‘pane of glass’ refer to?
Answer:
Pane of glass actually refers to the thin sheet of ice that the speaker gathers from the trough. He looks at the world through this pane of glass he skims from the trough. He holds on to it until it melts.

Question 6.
What is the significance of the ladder in the poem?
Answer:
The ladder brings in religious connotation to the poem as it is said that it is pointing toward heaven. The religious overtone alludes to the story of Jacob’s ladder in the Book of Genesis.

Question 7.
What does the speaker mean when he says, ‘I am done’?
Answer:
The speaker states that he is going to stop picking apples.

Question 8.
Interpret the lines:
‘Essence of winter sleep is on the night,
The scent of apples: I am drowsing off. ’
Answer:
It is night time, and the speaker is very tired. He compares his approaching sleep to an ‘essence’ or smell that wafts through the winter night. Not surprisingly, this essence smells like apples. This might mean that either he is falling asleep on his ladder in the orchard as night falls, or he is in bed, just thinking about being out in the orchard. This ambivalence continues throughout the poem.

Question 9.
What is the speaker’s state of mind as seen in the poem ‘After Apple-picking’?
Answer:
The speaker’s overwhelming state of mind in ‘After Apple-picking’ is tiredness and reflection. He was already tired in the beginning of the day when he took a drink and is even more exhausted after a long day spent picking apples. Physically, he is sore and worn out. His instep still feels the imprint of the ladder rung that he spent all day standing upon.

Question 10.
What symbolism can be found in the poem ‘After Apple-picking’?
Answer:
Symbolism threads through Robert Frost’s poem ‘After Apple-picking’. Apples, the symbol of life and the downfall of life, are the topics of the poem from start to finish. The ladder is one of the first symbols encountered in the poem. At the beginning of the poem, the ladder is pointed “Toward heaven still.” Later in the poem, the poet speaks of how the rungs of the ladder can be felt in the bottoms of his feet and how weary he is of the apple harvest. This is symbolic of the difficulty of his life’s work as he toils to reach heaven.

The apple picker has a hard time looking through the ‘pane of glass’ which is a piece of ice that formed on the drinking trough. He cannot see clearly through the ice as it distorts his vision and he cannot seem to recover from that. In other words, he cannot see what is to come now that his hard work is complete, and the harvest is in.

Two symbols interwoven through the poem are sleep and dreaming. The speaker wonders what form his sleep will take, even alluding to the hibernation of the woodchuck: “The woodchuck could say whether it’s like his Long sleep, as I describe its coming on, Or just some human sleep.” He is questioning if the sleep he feels coming on is a simple repose, or the eternal sleep of death.

The season of winter symbolizes the end of one’s life. Robert Frost could be metaphorically saying that the speaker is nearing the end of a hard working life.‘

Read the following extracts and answer the questions that follow:

1. I cannot rub the strangeness from my sight
I got from looking through a pane of glass
I skimmed this morning from the drinking trough
And held against the world of hoary grass.
It melted, and I let it fall and break.

Question i.
What did the poet see through the ‘pane of glass’?
Answer:
The speaker saw the frost-covered (‘hoary’) grass, distorted by the mirror (‘glass’) of the ice.

Question ii.
From where had he got this piece of glass?
Answer:
The night was cold enough to freeze the top layer of the trough into a sheet of ice, and the speaker picked up (‘skimmed’) this sheet.

Question iii.
How could the glass ‘melt’?
Answer:
The ice started to melt, probably from the warmth of his hands.

2. My instep arch not only keeps the ache,
It keeps the pressure of a ladder-round.
I feel the ladder sway as the boughs bend.
And l keep hearing from the cellar bin
The rumbling sound
Of load on load of apples coming in.
For I have had too much

Question i.
Why does the poet’s instep arch ache?
Answer:
The speaker feels not only the ache from the ladder on his foot, which would be natural to feel later in the day. He also feels the continuing pressure of the ladder, as if he were still standing on it. Thus the speaker can feel the pressure of the ladder on the bottom of his foot, and the ‘swaying’ of the ladder against the bending branches of the apple tree.

Question ii.
What has he been doing?
Answer:
He has been picking apples.

Question iii.
What is the rumbling sound that the poet hears?
Answer:
He hears the rambling sound of barrels of apples being unloaded into a bin for sorting.

Question iv.
Why does the poet say that he has had ‘too much’? What is he referring to?
Answer:
He states, in the most direct terms, that he is sick of picking apples and he has had too many apples.

Question v.
Why does the ladder sway?
Answer:
The ladder sways against the bending branches of the apple tree as there are too many apples.

3. There were ten thousand thousand fruit to touch,
Cherish in hand, lift down, and not let fall.
For all
That struck the earth,
No matter if not bruised or spiked with stubble,
Went surely to the cider-apple heap
As of no worth.

Question i.
Why is the poet careful to see that his apples don’t fall to the ground?
Answer:
The speaker had to worry about not letting the apples drop. Even if the apples were in perfect condition otherwise, without ‘bruises’ or ‘stubble’, they would be considered worthless if they touched the ground. They would have to be thrown in the heap of apples that will just be used to make cider.

Question ii.
What is the poet trying to express by using the symbol of an apple that is ‘spiked’ or ‘bruised’?
Answer:
The apple that is spiked or bruised makes us think of the Biblical story of the Fall of Adam and Eve, and their forbidden fruit. So, the spiked or bruised apple is a metaphor for all that is evil.

Question iii.
What does he really mean by using the imagery of apples being ‘cherished’?
Answer:
The speaker implies that each apple should be cherished, which means, carefully handled and picked. No apple should be allowed to fall.

4 Magnified apples appear and disappear,
Stem end and blossom end,
And every fleck of russet showing clear.

Question i.
What do ‘magnified apples’ signify?
Answer:
Magnified apples suggest that he’s going to dream about apples. The apples have an otherworldly appearance, as they are ‘magnified’ in his mind. They float by him like little orbs or stars across his vision.

Question ii.
Why does the speaker say, ‘They appear and disappear’?
Answer:
The description is similar to how the real apples would disappear into the barrel after he picked them.

Question iii.
Explain the last line.
Answer:
The speaker can see the brownish-reddish specks that dot the surface of the apples. This colour is called ‘russet’.

5. Were he not gone,
The woodchuck could say whether it’s like his
Long sleep, as I describe its coming on,
Or just some human sleep.

Question i.
What does the speaker wonder about?
Answer:
He wonders whether he will sleep like a normal person, or like a hibernating creature, such as a woodchuck.

Question ii.
Why does the speaker refer to the woodchuck?
Answer:
A woodchuck is a groundhog, and it hibernates in the winter. The speaker thinks he too could sleep for a long time.

Question iii.
Why is the speaker not able to say whether his sleep is like that of the woodchuck?
Answer:
The woodchuck is an expert in hibernation, so it could say whether the speaker is about to go into hibernation. Unfortunately, the woodchuck has already gone to sleep for the winter, so the speaker will get no answer to his question.

Writing Activity:

Have you ever witnessed the scene of a peasant hand-picking cotton-bolls or oranges in a farm with great care? Write a paragraph describing the scene of cotton-boll picking.
Answer:
At a time when we have machines for everything, it is a rare sight to see someone handpicking cotton bolls. But I got the opportunity when I went to my uncle’s place in Gujarat. It’s very interesting to watch cotton-picking. I saw labourers wearing white cloth around their head and picking cotton bolls. They carried long bags into which they put the cotton bolls that they had picked. The cotton plants do not grow very high. Hence it is easier for people to pick cotton with their bare hands. They make way for themselves amidst the plants and pick cotton bolls.
(Note: A cotton boll is actually the blossom of cotton that gets picked off the plant before it is processed. A cotton ball is a ball of refined cotton that is sold in shops.)

Multiple Choice Questions:

Four alternatives are given for each of the following questions/ incomplete statements. Choose the most appropriate alternative.

Question 1.
The speaker experienced a sense of strangeness
A) when he saw the unfilled basket
B) when he let the ice fall from his hands
C) while looking through a sheet of ice
D) when he saw the ladder standing upright, in the direction of heaven
Answer:
C) while looking through a sheet of ice

Question 2.
The speaker compares sleep to
A) an ‘essence’ in the winter air
B) a sheet of ice
C) the ladder standing upright in the direction of heaven
D) the unfilled basket
Answer:
A) an ‘essence’ in the winter air

Question 3.
Which of the following indicates that the task of picking apples is still not complete?
A) His long ladder still stands against a tree, rising high toward heaven.
B) There is a barrel that has not yet been filled with apples, and can accommodate some more.
C) A few apples may still have been left on the branches of the tree unpicked or yet to be picked.
D) All of the above.
Answer:
D) All of the above.

Question 4.
What causes drowsiness in the apple-picker?
A) The sheet of ice
B) The scent of apples
C) The drinking trough
D) The hoary grass.
Answer:
B) The scent of apples

Question 5.
The poet says he is done with apple-picking because
A) he could not rub the strangeness of the sight he had seen through a sheet of ice
B) only a few are left to be picked
C) he is tired
D) his instep arch is aching
Answer:
C) he is tired

Question 6.
The scene described in ‘After Apple-Picking’ takes place in
A) late autumn or early winter
B) autumn
C) winter
D) summer
Answer:
A) late autumn or early winter

Question 7.
The situation described in ‘After Apple-Picking’ is
A) frustration the speaker feels about apples left unpicked
B) a dream the speaker has after picking apples all day
C) the dangers the speaker realises about the act of picking apples
D) worry about the coming snow that winter
Answer:
B) a dream the speaker has after picking apples all day

Question 8.
According to the speaker, apples that are used to make cider are
A) the ones that fall to the ground
B) red and sweet
C) picked from the highest tree branches
D) found on the lowest tree branches
Answer:
A) the ones that fall to the ground

KSEEB Solutions

Question 9.
The speaker of ‘After Apple-Picking’ can be described as someone who is
A) angry with someone
B) bored with his job
C) weary from life
D) in love with a stranger
Answer:
C) weary from life

Question 10.
Which question does ‘After Apple-Picking’ symbolically address?
A) How does a person deal with many hopes, wishes and experiences?
B) How does one’s work affect one’s dreams?
C) What is the real importance of nature?
D) When does a person best fulfill life’s hopes and dreams?
Answer:
A) How does a person deal with many hopes, wishes and experiences?

KSEEB Solutions

After Apple-picking Summary In English

This poem by Robert Frost is in the first person, and the narrator is a hardworking, simple man who has been picking apples in an apple orchard all day long, and is now overcome with exhaustion, not only because of the work, but also because of his immense experience of picking apples. It is winter, and the fast-approaching night is making him drowsy. He knows he still has a lot of apples to pick, but doesn’t want to work anymore.

He feels the depth of his experience is going to make him dream vividly about apple-picking even while he’s asleep. He tries to shake the drowsiness off him, and tries to concentrate on picking apples because he has to take great care and not let any apple fall to the ground, as then it will be considered worthless. The narrator thinks about how tired he is, and how he wants to let sleep wash away his fatigue, and wonders if it will be a normal ‘human’ sleep, or a deep, hibernating sleep like that of the woodchuck.

The narrator, who is the apple-picker, has an old-fashioned ladder which he evidently uses to pick apples. The mention of the ladder standing upright, in the direction of Heaven, hints at the biblical story of Jacob’s ladder, where Jacob dreams of a ladder that reached Heaven. The narrator has been picking apples all day, and yet hasn’t picked all the apples on that tree. He still has one more barrel to fill with picked apples, but he is too tired to continue picking. He knows he should finish picking all the apples, but he has had enough.

The winter is fast approaching, and it is night time. This means that the narrator has spent all day picking apples, and is now exhausted by the work. He compares sleep to an ‘essence’ in the winter air, and feels this essence smells like apples, which again tells us about the effect of hard work on him. He is very sleepy, and feels like he’s going to fall asleep right there on the ladder. The narrator mentions that he feels ‘strangeness’ in his sight, which is attributed to an incident he experienced earlier that day.

The narrator found a thin sheet of glass on his water trough when he went to get a drink of water early in the morning. As he held the sheet of ice in his hands and looked through it at the frostbitten grass, he could see everything strange and distorted. When the ice began to melt in his hand, he let the sheet fall to the ground and break, but this did not change the strangeness in his sight, which is causing him to look at the world in an odd, different way.

Though he dropped the sheet of ice in real life, the narrator mentally alters the scene before he sleeps. This brings us to an emotion many of us have forgotten to experience – taking the time to gather the day’s thoughts, situations, and actions before falling asleep. He is now in bed, ready to give in to his exhaustion and fall asleep, and predicts what dreams he is going to have.

The narrator does dream about apples – picking them and tossing them into the designated barrels. In his dream, the apples are ‘magnified’, and look very different than what he is used to. He can see every speck of reddish brown (every fleck of russet) on the apples, thanks to the magnified appearance.

The narrator’s dream is very realistic. He can feel the pressure of standing on the ladder on his feet, and can even feel how his feet ache by standing on the ladder all day. Not only does he feel himself standing on the ladder, but he can also feel the ladder moving against the tree’s branches.

The narrator is almost living the dream, as it is so realistic. He can hear the sound of the apples being offloaded into the bins where they will be sorted. This line also makes it clear that the narrator is not the only apple-picker in that orchard; perhaps, they are all hired by someone else to pick apples.

After Apple-picking Summary In English 1

The narrator is tired of doing the work that he used to love in the past. He has picked countless apples over the years, and remembers how he always looked forward to the harvest season. However, now those feelings have changed. He no longer is excited about the apple-picking season.

The narrator describes his work as an apple-picker, and the utmost care that they all have to take when picking apples. He talks about ‘ten thousand thousand’ fruit (exaggeration for a very large quantity of apples) which had to be carefully unloaded into the barrels. Even if one fell down, and touched the ground, and remained unspoiled, it was thrown into the cider heap. The apples in the cider heap were considered useless.

The narrator is sure that he is going to have visions of picking apples, dropping them, and standing on the ladder, haunting him in his sleep. He wonders whether he will sleep like a normal person, or like a hibernating creature such as woodchuck (a groundhog). The woodchuck is an expert in hibernation, so it could say whether the speaker is about to go into hibernation.

Unfortunately, since it is already winter, the woodchuck has already gone to sleep, so the speaker will get no answer to his question. What we can decipher through these lines is that the narrator is extremely tired, and needs some well-deserved rest. Metaphorically, this also means that the narrator is wondering whether he will even wake up to life the next morning, or not.

KSEEB Solutions

Glossary:

barrel – a large round container, made of wood or metal
stick through – opening up against the tree
essence – fundamental, quality
cider – juice made from apples
pane – sheet of glass
done with – tired of
drowsing off – feeling sleepy
rub off strangeness – make one feel uncomfortable
skim – remove the substance floating on the surface of the liquid
drinking trough – a long narrow open container, used for holding food or water for animals
hoary – white or grey due to snow on it
magnify – to make bigger than the actual
fleck – a very small area of colour
russet – reddish brown; used here for the colour of apples
arch – the curved part of the bottom of one’s foot
sway – swinging movement
cherish – to hold dear

KSEEB Solutions

Leave a Comment

error: Content is protected !!