Plus Two English Rice Poem Notes, Appreciation, Summary

Plus Two English Notes Chapter 2 Rice (Poem)

Rice composed by Chemmanam Chacko and translated by Prof. K. Ayyappa Paniker, is a trip down memory lane to the narrator's native village. After returning from North India, he realizes that a lot has changed, especially his favourite rice.
Chemmanam Chacko was born on 7 March 1926 in the village of Mulakulam in erstwhile Travancore. He created a space for himself in Malayalam poetry. He is a master satirist who fought the system in many battles through his writings. The poet, who has many literary works to his credit, always responded to his surroundings with scathing verses.
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Board SCERT, Kerala
Text Book NCERT Based
Class Plus Two
Subject English Notes
Chapter Chapter 2
Chapter Name Rice (Poem)  
Category Plus Two Kerala

Kerala Syllabus Plus Two English Notes Unit 4 Chapter 2 Rice (Poem)  

Chapter 2 Rice (Poem)


Chemmanam Chacko’s Rice is a thought provoking poem. After receiving his doctorate, the poet returns from northern India. He does not like North Indian cuisine and wishes to eat rice once he reaches Kerala. When he returns home, he expects to see his father hard at work in the fields. According to the poet, everyone will be busy in the field because it will be the planting season. He wishes the train would go faster so he could meet everyone and eat the rice faster.

When he returns to his village, he notices that everything has changed. Rubber trees were planted in the place of rice trees around the city. There are arecanut palms and dealwood trees along with the rubber trees. When he returns home, he finds his father working on a rubber sheeting machine. He is surprised that his father has no reservations about converting rice plants into rubber. According to his father, growing rice is inconvenient and less lucrative than other crops. Since the government distributes rice to those who lack paddy fields, no one wants to grow rice. When the poet's brother arrives with government-supplied food, he discovers that it is made of wheat rather than rice. A plane flies over the poet's residence. He imagines that the Chief Minister is heading to the Center to ask for more wheat. Since the state no longer grows food crops, authorities must rely on grain from other states and the federal government.

Plus Two English Rice Poem Appreciation

The poem "Rice" written by Chemmanam Chacko and translated by Prof. Ayyappa Paniker is a great satire that cracks down on the greed of some farmers here. The poem is full of scorn and sarcasm. The son of a rice farmer travels to northern India to do research on making bowl toys. For four years he works hard, eats chapatti every day and finally manages to get his doctorate. He must have thought about exploring the possibilities of bowls because, as the son of a rice farmer, he had plenty of bowls at home and also in the houses nearby. By using shells to make toys, many people could find employment in a state notorious for unemployment.

But then there's the disappointment. When the son returns home with his well-deserved PhD in making bowl toys, there is no bowl at all in or near his house. Farmers had switched to cash crops, particularly rubber, believing that growing rice was inconvenient and unprofitable. In addition, numerous incentives for the cultivation of cash crops were given by the project sponsors. The son finds his father with people building a machine for making rubber sheets. All the paddy fields are gone and in their place, he sees gum trees and dealwood trees.

 There is biting sarcasm in the description of the Chief Minister flying to the centre to ask for more grain to feed the people here. There is no more rice to eat. People must eat wheat. The son comes home after four years with the wish to eat his favourite rice "athirika". But his craving will remain an unfulfilled craving since he too must eat the wheat ration given to the household. And his PhD? How can he find shells to make toys?

I wouldn't call it an exquisite poem, comparable to the poems of Wordsworth, Coleridge, Shelley or Keats. But it can bear comparison with the poetry of Alexander Pope, who excelled in satire. The poem has excellent imagery. The poet used a number of Malayalam words in the poem. The language is colloquial. The stanzas of the poem are irregular - they range from 2 to 6 lines. It's a prose poem. As a satirical poem, the style is simple, direct, and clear, in keeping with the subject matter. Chemmanam Chacko has done a good job of showing how farmers have transformed from humble folk to smart, commercially minded people. the-poem-in-the-light-of-their-answers-to-cake

Related Questions

a) Of all the memories of his homeland, the narrator thinks of rice first. What does this show?

It shows his extreme love for rice. He is a rice eater. For the last 4 years, he has been eating chapattis. Now he is craving rice.

b) What are the memories of the narrator about the paddy cultivating season?

He remembers his father in the fields below his house. He is wearing a handloom dhoti stained with yellow mud. He is excited about the water of the Varanganal canal. He also remembers his little brother carrying the tender saplings to be planted where the ploughing is done. On the dyke baskets full of seeds are kept. There is the noise of shouting as the oxen draw the plough in the field.

c) The narrator wants the train to move a little faster. What does this tell us about his feeling for his native village? 

It tells that he loves his village dearly. He has been missing it for long. He wants to reach it as quickly as possible. We see his nostalgic feelings here.

d) What changes in the native village does the narrator notice on his return.

There are many changes in his native village. The palm-thatched houses are gone. There are only rubber plants there. There are no rice fields anymore. There is no noise from people below. No shouts of ploughing. The whole field is planted with areca nut palms. In the corner, along the canal, there are the dealwood trees which were not there before.

e) “Can we get some husk from the Centre, too, to make toys with it?” Bring out the satire in these lines.

The poet had gone to North India and did 4-year research on making toys with husks. He got a doctoral degree at the end of his research. Now he comes back to Kerala to find out that there is no more rice cultivation here and consequently no husk to make toys with. To make toys with husk, he has to get a husk from the Centre! He did the research to help the State to find employment and. income.

f) Rubber plants have taken the place of paddy. What does this imply?

It implies that food crops are replaced by cash/commercial crops. People don’t any more cultivate their favourite varieties of rice like athikira, modan and vellaran. Now they survive on their rations which consist of wheat.

g) “Only fools turn to rice farming for gain.” Why does the father say so?

The father says so because nobody promotes the farming of rice. Rice farming was quite inconvenient and the farmer gained nothing. Rubber brings better money. The government gives rice to those who have no paddy fields.

h) What does the ship of the sky represent?

It represents the aeroplane, as the ship of the desert represents the camel.

Plus Two English Notes

Chapter 2: Rice (Poem) Textbook Solution


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