A Tiger in the Zoo | Leslie Norris | Poem 3 | Class X | English |
This poem revolves around a tiger which is caged as well as helpless. The poet compares and contrasts the life of a caged tiger with the life of a free tiger which roams aimlessly and freely here and there. He conveys an important message to the readers that animals must not be caged rather left free to their own meditations so that they can live freely. According to him, freedom is much better than captivity and everyone has the equal right to enjoy it be he a human or an animal.
In the first two stanzas of the poem, the poet sees a caged tiger in a cell. It is a very congested concrete cell wherein the tiger can hardly take a couple of steps let alone run. Moreover, he describes the beauty of a tiger praising his bright strips on his body and his pads which seem to have made of velvet. The poet finds ferociousness in him but he can’t do anything as he is caged and helpless. He is full of pity and believes that all his shackles must be broken and he should be let free to enjoy his life. He imagines, what the tiger would have been doing had he been outside the cell. He would have been lying in the shade of tress and waiting eagerly for his hunt (Deer) at the water hole
In the next few stanzas, he imagines what the tiger would have done if he had failed to get his prey. He would have roared and terrorized the people of nearby village showing his white fangs and awful claws scaring people to death. In these lines, the poet indicates the destruction made by humans in the forests enforcing the animals to enter the so-called made towns and cities by humans. In the fourth stanza, the poet shows the tiger’s inability to do anything for he is caged in a concrete cell. He is furious but has no option left except ignoring the visitor who have come to see him. His helplessness has been shown in the fourth stanza.
In the last stanza, the poet tells that the tiger has no peace neither during the day due to visitors nor at night due to patrolling of the cars. He keeps on looking at the stars with his shiny eyes in a hope that someday or the other he would be comfortable and as free as others are in front of him in natural surroundings.
- Repetition: Velvet quiet quiet rage, Brilliant eyes brilliant stars
- Alliteration: Stalks in vivid stripes, locked in a concrete cell.
- Rhyme Scheme: Inconsistent
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