The Voice of the Rain [Poem by Walt Whitman] Exercise
Glossary of the Poem
- Atomies /ˈæt.ə.miːz/ – (n.) tiny particles; atoms
- Beautify /ˈbjuː.tɪ.faɪ/ – (v.) to make beautiful; to enhance the beauty of
- Birth-place /ˈbɜːθ.pleɪs/ – (n.) the place where someone or something is born
- Bottomless /ˈbɒt.əm.ləs/ – (adj.) having no bottom; extremely deep
- Descend /dɪˈsend/ – (v.) to move or fall downward
- Drouths /draʊθs/ – (n.) droughts; periods of dryness or lack of rainfall
- Duly /ˈduː.li/ – (adv.) in a proper or expected manner; appropriately
- Eternal /ɪˈtɜːr.nəl/ – (adj.) lasting forever; never-ending
- Form’d /fɔːmd/ – (v.) formed; shaped
- Fulfilment /fʊlˈfɪlmənt/ – (n.) the act of completing or achieving something
- Globe /ɡloʊb/ – (n.) the Earth; the world
- Heaven /ˈhɛv.ən/ – (n.) the sky; a place associated with happiness or divine beings
- Impalpable /ɪmˈpæl.pə.bəl/ – (adj.) unable to be felt or touched
- Issuing /ˈɪʃ.juː.ɪŋ/ – (v.) coming out; emerging
- Lave /leɪv/ – (v.) to wash or bathe
- Latent /ˈleɪ.tənt/ – (adj.) hidden; concealed; not yet developed or visible
- Origin /ˈɔːr.ɪ.dʒɪn/ – (n.) the point or place where something begins or is created
- Pure /pjʊər/ – (adj.) clean; uncontaminated; free from impurities
- Reck’d /rɛkt/ – (v.) reckoned; considered; taken into account
- Sea /siː/ – (n.) a large body of saltwater; the ocean
- Seeds /siːdz/ – (n.) small, reproductive structures produced by plants; the beginnings of new life
- Soft-falling /sɒft ˈfɔː.lɪŋ/ – (adj.) gently descending; falling softly
- Thou /ðaʊ/ – (pron.) the second person singular pronoun; used when addressing one person
- Translated /trænsˈleɪ.tɪd/ – (v.) past participle of “translate”; converted into another language or form of expression
- Unborn /ʌnˈbɔːrn/ – (adj.) not yet born; not yet in existence
- Upward /ˈʌp.wərd/ – (adv.) towards a higher place or position
- Vaguely /ˈveɪɡ.li/ – (adv.) in an unclear or indistinct manner
- Voice /vɔɪs/ – (n.) the sound produced in the throat; the expression of thoughts or opinions
- Wand’ring /ˈwɒn.dər.ɪŋ/ – (v.) wandering; moving about without a fixed course or purpose
- Yet /jɛt/ – (adv.) up until now; so far; nevertheless
Summary of “The Voice of the Rain”
“The Voice of the Rain” is a poem written by Walt Whitman in the form of a conversation between the poet and the rain. The rain describes its perpetual journey from the earth to the poet.
In the poem, the poet asks the soft-falling shower, “Who are you?” The rain responds by saying that it is the poem of the earth, which is an unusual reply. The rain explains that it cannot be touched as it rises as water vapor from the land and the bottomless sea, changing its form but remaining the same. Through condensation, the vapor transforms into clouds.
The rain falls back to the earth’s surface, providing water to drought-prone areas and beautifying and purifying its birthplace. It sustains the life of seeds within the earth, aiding in their growth. The rain doesn’t concern itself with whether anyone acknowledges its actions; it simply completes its work and returns home. The poet also draws a comparison between the rain and a song, as both undertake a shared journey. A song originates from the heart of the singer, traverses to fulfill its purpose, and returns with love for its creator.
Literary devices used in “The Voice of the Rain” include personification, metaphor, hyperbole, and imagery. The rain is personified as a living entity, and it is metaphorically compared to a poem. Hyperbole is used to emphasize the vastness of the sea. Imagery is employed to create visual descriptions of the soft-falling shower.
About the Writer of The Voice of the Rain
|Born||31 May 1819, West Hills, New York, United States|
|Died||26 March 1892, Camden, New Jersey, United States|
|Poems||Leaves of Grass, Song of Myself, O Captain! My Captain!|
|Awards||Golden Kite Award for Picture Book Illustration|
Walt Whitman, born on May 31, 1819, in West Hills, New York, was an influential American poet, essayist, and journalist. Considered one of the most significant figures in American literature, Whitman’s poetry broke traditional forms and explored themes of democracy, nature, and the human experience. His seminal work, “Leaves of Grass,” published in 1855 and expanded throughout his life, challenged societal norms with its celebration of the individual and the body. Whitman’s writing, characterized by free verse, expansive catalogues, and a lyrical and exuberant style, revolutionized poetry and had a profound impact on future generations of poets. The voice of the Rain is one of these. His inclusive vision embraced all aspects of humanity, transcending boundaries of race, gender, and social class. Whitman’s contribution to American literature continues to be celebrated for its innovation, its democratic spirit, and its enduring relevance.
Things To Understand in ‘The Voice of The Rain’
The two voices in the poem belong to the rain and the poet. The lines “And who art thou? said I to the soft-falling shower” indicate the voice of the poet, while “I am the Poem of Earth, said the voice of the rain” indicate the voice of the rain.
The phrase “strange to tell” means that it was unexpected or unusual for the rain to reply to the poet’s question.
The words that indicate the parallel between rain and music are: “For the song, issuing from its birth-place, after fulfillment, wandering Reck’d or unreck’d, duly with love returns.” The similarity between the two is that they both have a cyclic journey. A song originates from the heart of the singer, wanders in the world, and returns to its birthplace with love. Similarly, rain originates from the earth, fulfills its duty, wanders, and returns to its birthplace with love for its creator.
The cyclic movement of rain is portrayed in the poem through its process of rising as vapor, condensing into clouds, and falling back to the earth as rain. This cycle repeats continuously. In science, the water cycle is explained similarly, where water evaporates, condenses, and precipitates back to the earth. The poem reflects the eternal journey of rain in its own words.
The last two lines are put within brackets because they represent the poet’s personal observation and thoughts, drawing a comparison between rain and music.
Whence – where
Vaguely – not clearly
Descend – come down
Lave – wash; bathe
Atomics – small particles
Latent – hidden/buried
Exercise of The Voice of the Rain Class 10 English [NEB Nepal]
A. Match the words with their meanings.
a. eternal – vii. never-ending
b. impalpable – v. not easily understood
c. vaguely – ii. unclearly
d. descend- i. come down
e. lave- vi. to pour out as water
f. atomizes- iii. indivisible particles
g. reck- iv. to take care of
B. Fill in the blanks by choosing the words given below.
[impalpable, recks, globe, drought, beautify, latent]
a. The river ran dry during the drought
b. It is still impalpable to understand how the earth originated.
c. The company produces a wide variety of make-up and skin care products designed to gently and effectively beautify human skin.
d. His greatest ambition is to sail around the globe
e. Without training, his musical talent remained latent
f. What recks it whether they win or lose?
C. Complete the summary of the poem using suitable words or phrases given below.
[quenches, rhythm, mysterious, heal, atomizes, condensation, ascends, showers, originality]
The poem is a conversation between the poet and the rain. When the poet asks about the identity of the drizzle, she replies that she is the poem of the Earth. The rain expresses that it gives happiness to Mother Earth.
The rain is a perpetual process that has different forms at different times. It rises from the land as water vapor and ascends high to the sky. It takes the form of clouds. Though it changes its form or shape, its originality remains unchanged. It shows that nature is not fully understood. Some parts of it always remain mysterious.
The raindrops pour down from above to wash away atomizes and dust layers. It quenches the thirst of the dry Earth and heals everything that is becoming lifeless. In other words, the showers make the Earth pure and beautiful.
Finally, the poet observes that the life of rain is similar to that of a song. A song also has the power to calm, heal, transform, and thrill. In the same way, repeated evaporation and condensation purify the rain. It beautifies the whole earth as a rhythm does to a poem or a piece of music.
D. Answer the following questions.
a. What are the two voices in the poem? Who do they belong to?
The two voices in the poem are the speaker and the rain. They belong to the earth.
b. How is the cyclical movement of the rain shown in the poem?
The cycling movement of the rain is shown in the poem by describing how it rises from the land and sea as water vapour, ascends into the sky, takes the form of clouds, and then descends back to the earth as rain to wash away dust and quench the thirst of the dry earth.
c. Why are the showers necessary for the Earth?
The showers are necessary for the earth because they provide moisture to plants and animals, wash away dust and pollutants, and help in the purification and beautification of the earth.
d. How are the rain and music similar?
The rain and music are similar as they both have a rhythm and the power to calm, heal, transform, and thrill.
e. How are the clouds formed?
The clouds are formed when water vapor rises from the earth and then cools and condenses into tiny droplets, which then accumulate and form larger droplets that eventually fall to the earth as rain.
f. List the pairs of opposite words in the poem.
E. Why do water and vegetable oil not mix?
Water and vegetable oil do not mix because they have different chemical properties. Water is polar, while vegetable oil is nonpolar. This means they are unable to form a homogeneous mixture when mixed together, and they separate into two distinct layers.
Complete the following sentences using the correct form of verbs in brackets.
If Gaurab were the captain, the team … (play) better.
I …..(call) you had I known you were in Nepal.
would have called
If he … ….(not/come ) to Nepal. he would not have seen Mt. Everest.
Had you arrived a bit earlier, you… . . ..(see) Manashi.
would have seen
We could slow down global warming if we… ….(reduce) eneray consumption.
If he were to see me, he …….(know) me at once.
Were Rijisa in the USA, she… .. . (be) working for a company.
How would you feel if someone …..(ask) you for an autograph?
What….(you/do) if Keshab had proposed you for marriage?
would you have done
If I ……(have) a life jacket, I could certainly swim across the river.
Complete the following sentences with appropriate clauses.
If you don’t leave soon,……
If you don’t leave soon, you will miss your bus.
If it rains in winter,……
If it rains in winter, you will feel colder.
…… as long as you tell the truth.
You will not get into trouble as long as you tell the truth.
A country cannot develop unless ……
A country cannot develop unless it invests in education and infrastructure.
…….if they insult you?
What will you do if they insult you?
A. Write a letter of complaint to the concerned authority about the unmanaged garbage in your locality. Mention the hazards of unmanaged garbage to public health and suggest some measures to solve the problem.
I am writing to bring to your attention the unmanaged garbage problem in our locality that has been a persistent issue for several months. The piles of garbage on the streets and in open areas are causing a lot of inconvenience and health hazards for the residents.
Unmanaged garbage is not only an eyesore but also poses a severe threat to public health. The garbage attracts rodents and insects, which can spread diseases like dengue, malaria, and plague. The foul odor emanating from the garbage is causing respiratory problems and nausea among the residents.
Moreover, the garbage blocks the drainage system, which leads to waterlogging during the rainy season. This, in turn, causes a breeding ground for mosquitoes and other disease-carrying pests.
Therefore, I urge the concerned authority to immediately solve this problem. Some measures that can be taken to manage garbage effectively are:
Regular garbage collection: The garbage should be collected from households and commercial areas on a regular basis.
Segregation of waste: The residents should be encouraged to segregate the waste into biodegradable and non-biodegradable categories.
Recycling: The non-biodegradable waste should be recycled to reduce the amount of garbage that ends up in landfills.
Public awareness: The residents should be educated on the hazards of unmanaged garbage and the importance of proper waste disposal.
I hope that the concerned authority will take prompt action to manage the garbage in our locality, which will not only improve the living conditions but also promote public health.
Thank you for your attention.