The School Globe
by James Reaney
Sometimes when I hold
Our faded old globe
That we used at school
To see where oceans were
And the five continents, 5
The lines of latitude and longitude,
The North Pole, the Equator and
the South Pole‹
Sometimes when I hold this
Wrecked blue cardboard pumpkin 10
I think: here in my hands
Rest the fair fields and lands
Of my childhood
Where still lie or still wander
Old games, tops and pets; 15
A house where I was little
And afraid to swear
Because God might hear and
Send a bear
To eat me up; 20
Rooms where I was as old
As I was high;
Where I loved the pink clenches,
The white, red and pink fists
Of roses; where I watched the rain 25
That Heaven¹s clouds threw down
In puddles and rutfuls
And irregular mirrors
Of soft brown glass upon the ground.
This school globe is a parcel of my past, 30
A basket of pluperfect things.
And here I stand with it
Sometime in the summertime
All alone in an empty schoolroom
Where about me hang 35
Old maps, an abacus, pictures,
Blackboards, empty desks.
If I raise my hand
No tall teacher will demand
What I want. 40
But if someone in authority
Were here, I’d say
Give me this old world back
Whose husk I clasp
And I’ll give you in exchange 45
The great sad real one
Not with a child’s remembered and
But with blood, pus, horror, death, 50
stepmothers, and lies.
INSTRUCTIONS: Read the poem entitled “The School Globe.”
1. In paragraph form and with reference to the poem, discuss what the globe represents
to the poet. (6 marks)
2. In paragraph form and with reference to the poem, discuss the poet’s adult view of
the world. (6 marks)
1. Which of the following phrases implies that as a child the narrator experienced
A. “Rooms where I was as old / As I was high. . . .”
B. “In puddles and rutfuls / And irregular mirrors. . . .”
C. “where I watched the rain / That Heaven’s clouds threw down . . . .”
D. “Where I loved the pink clenches, / The white, red and pink fists / Of roses . . . .”
2. In line 10, “Wrecked blue cardboard pumpkin” is an example of
3. Lines 11 and 12, “I think: here in my hands / Rest the fair fields and lands,” contain an
4. Lines 21 and 22, “Rooms where I was as old / As I was high,” suggest that the
A. tall for his age.
B. short for his age.
C. young and small.
D. young compared to the globe.
5. In line 23, the words “pink clenches” literally refer to
A. the clouds.
B. flower buds.
C. the boy¹s fists.
D. the school desks.
6. In lines 25 and 26, the words “I watched the rain / That Heaven’s clouds threw
down” contain an example of
7. In lines 28 and 29, the words “irregular mirrors / Of soft brown glass” refer
D. broken bottles.
8. In line 31, the phrase “A basket of pluperfect things” implies or suggests
A. school supplies.
B. childhood memories.
C. a flower arrangement.
D. the countries on the globe.
9. The speaker is alone in the classroom because
A. it is summer vacation.
B. he has been given a detention.
C. the other students have been dismissed.
D. he returned at the end of a school day to get the globe.
10. In a sense, the poem contains two personas or narrators, namely
A. the teacher and the child.
B. the stepmother and the child.
C. the child and the parent he became.
D. the child and the grownup he became.
11. The poem¹s tone shifts dramatically at line
A. 35. B. 40. C. 45. D. 50.
12. Which of the following best describes the form of the poem?
A. free-verse sonnet.
B. retrospective lyric.
C. introspective ballad.
D. blank-verse narrative.
MINISTRY OF EDUCATION PROSE AND POETRY SCORING GUIDE
Holistic Scale: Marking Criteria for Content and Written Expression
Literary interpretation should clearly demonstrate synthesis of content, organization and style.
HIGH‹Substantial, clear, perceptive
The high level response demonstrates a focused, clear, and perceptive understanding of the task and text and is written in a fluid manner. Thoughtful engagement with the text is apparent through the use of specific, relevant, and integrated support. The reader is impressed by the quality of the response. The 5 response, which may not be as sophisticated or mature as the 6, reads with less ease, possibly as a result of a greater density of minor errors.
MIDDLE‹Sufficient, satisfactory, basic
The middle level response reflects a basic, literal reading of both task and text with some sensitivity to nuance or subtlety and is written in a satisfactory manner. Support is adequate. Organization may be simplistic with mechanical transitions. Errors in mechanics rarely impede understanding. The 3 response may be barely adequate. It may also feature weak support, awkwardness of expression or a higher density of mechanical errors.
LOW‹Awkward, unclear, deficient
The student misses the intent of the question (e.g., does not understand the term ³contrast²), but writes well even though off topic. The low level response attempts to address the task but manages to produce an essentially awkward and/or confusing statement. Support is inadequate, unclear, and further diminished by a multiplicity of errors. The 1 response demonstrates a deficient command of language skills appropriate to the task.
Answers may be awarded a 0 for failure to provide a response in keeping with the purpose of the question.