Windy Boy in a Windswept Tree Windy Boy in a Windswept Tree

					Windy Boy in a Windswept Tree                         Windy Boy in a
by Geoffrey Summerfield                               Windswept Tree
Everyone knows how exciting and dramatic a
                                                      The branch swayed, swerved,
powerful storm can be. Geoffrey Summerfield’s
poem describes the effect of a strong wind on a       Swept and whipped, up,
boy caught in. a tree. His use of language helps      Down, right to left,
us to see the scene in our minds.                     Then leapt to right again,
                                                      As if to hurl him down
                                                      To smash to smithereens
                                                      On the knife-edge grass
                                                      Or smother
                                                      In the close-knit quilts of moss.
                                                      Out on a crazy limb
                                                      He screwed his eyes tight shut,
                                                      To keep out the dizzy ground.
                                                      Sweat greased his palms;
                                                      Fear pricked his forehead.
                                                      The twisted branches lunged and
                                                      His body curved, twisted, he arched
                                                      His legs and gripped the bark
                                                      Between his ankles.
                                                      The crust of bark
Bringing the wind to life                             Sharp as glasspaper
Geoffrey Summerfield uses personification to          And rough with wrinkles
make the wind seem as if it is alive.                 Grazed his skin
Some words show the movement of the tree -            And raised the raw red flesh
such as 'swayed' and 'swerved'. Others make
                                                      And crazed his mind
the tree sound like a human being - 'leapt to
right again, / As if to hurl him down' (lines 4-5).   With fears of breaking.
The tree often sounds as if it is deliberately        Then the mad-cap, capering wind
attacking the boy.                                    Dropped.
    a. Look through the poem and find some            The branch steadied,
       examples of where the wind seems to
       behave as if it is alive.
    b. Think about why the writer uses this           Rested.
       technique. Which of the following reasons      He slowly clambered, slowly back,
       is most likely?                                Slowly so safely,
                                                      Then dropped
          •   Personifying the wind makes his
                                                      Like a wet blanket
              poem more interesting.
          •   It makes the boy seem like a            To the rick-like, reassuring ground.
              victim.                                 Finally, without a sound
          •   It makes the wind seem aggressive.      He walked carefully
          •   It helps us to imagine the power of     Home.
              the wind.
          •   It adds humour to the poem.

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