NCERT English Class 10 Poem - Animals

Poem - Animals

Writer of the poem - Walt Whitman
Summary

    In this poem, Walt Whitman has beautifully brought out the contrast between animals and human beings. Animals are generally simple in nature whereas humans are generally greedy, selfish and very complicated. He is very happy with the easy - going nature of animals and he wants to follow them. The poet is desirous to live with the animals as he thinks that they are contended and serene. They are wise and this is the reason why they never bewail of their lot and condition. They do not weep for their sins and they have no care to even worship God. They are always satisfied and do not need to possess things. They respect none including their ancestors and remain indifferent in their pleasure and pain. For this very reason, the poet wishes to learn from animals. They do not have any kind of falsehood. They are free from all types of trivial anxieties, so they are still living their natural life.

Explanation
   The poet is quite impressed by the animals that they do not cry and complain about their conditions like humans. They eat and sleep, have nothing to worry about and hence are peaceful. The animals are pure and they do not pray to God for forgiveness or ask God to fulfill their wishes/desires like humans.

    Animals do not possess material things like humans and they are happy and satisfied without any of the worldly possessions. They are devoid of the habit of praying to their ancestors. When the poet says ‘not one is respectable’, he means that since all of them are equal, there is no question of respect for some and insult to other. Thus animals are happy and uncomplaining.

    The poet feels that animals represent human beings in some way. This means that animals seem to have virtues like kindness and innocence which humans once had. They symbolise the lost values of the human race. The poet believes that humans dropped these virtues a long time ago and have forgotten them.

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