Q.1. Can a “simple jab of the knife” kill a tree? Why not?
Ans. No, a simple jab of a knife cannot kill a tree because it takes many years for a tree to grow and rise out of the earth. Moreover, only a chop cannot kill it because it will slowly rise again and grow to its original size.
Q.2. How has the tree grown to its full size? List the words suggestive of its life and activity.
Q.3. What is the meaning of “bleeding bark”? What makes it bleed?
Ans. “Bleeding bark” refers to the area on the tree trunk where it has been hit with the axe. It bleeds because the woodcutter has wounded the tree by cutting and chopping it.
Q.4. The poet says “No” in the beginning of the third stanza. What does he mean by this?
Ans. In the beginning of the third stanza, the poet has said “No” to lay emphasis on the fact that mere chopping of the tree would not kill it. The tree would grow again and retain its original size.
Q.5. What is the meaning of “anchoring earth” and “earth cave”?
Q.6. What does he mean by “the strength of the tree exposed”?
Ans. The strength of the tree lies in its roots, which the poet asks to snap out in order to kill the tree. Thus, the phrase “the strength of the tree exposed” refers to the roots of the tree being exposed to sunlight and air.
Q.7. What finally kills the tree?
Ans. The tree is finally killed by the uprooting of its roots. When the roots, which had anchored their lies hidden in the earth for years, were dug out, the tree’s strength was exposed and this led to the death of the tree. It dried up after it had been uprooted.