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Notes for
Jalaluddin Rumi (Persian, 1207-1273) (translated by Coleman Barks)

Exercise AK G11

     This short poem is an example of what can be done later in the year, after most students have mastered S/V/C patterns, and the teacher's objective is simply to use an occasional review to make sure that the students do not forget the syntax they have learned. In this case, after the students have analyzed the syntax of the poem, you might want to have them discuss the words in the subject and finite verb slots. Who or what is the "craftsman"?  What did he do? ("pulled," "cut," "called," "gave"). By comparison, what did the reed do? What do the verbs suggest that the poet is imlying about human nature?
     If you want to put more focus on the literary aspect of this assignment, you might want to have students compare this poem with Pascal's Pensee # 147. (See Grade 11, March 13th.)