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Analyze the poem by Sir John Squire,"There was an Indian."

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muzhdah | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted May 10, 2011 at 5:24 AM via web

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Analyze the poem by Sir John Squire,"There was an Indian."

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jmj616 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Associate Educator

Posted May 10, 2011 at 11:19 AM (Answer #1)

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Sir John Squire (1882-1958) in his poem "There was an Indian," describes Columbus's discovery of America from the point of view of an Indian (Native American).

The poem begins by describing the Indian as a person "who had known no change"--his way of life had not changed for centuries.  When he sees Columbus's ships approaching he gasps, because he has never seen anything like them before.  He can only describe them as "huge canoes" that have "bellying cloths on poles" (sails on masts) and "fluttering coloured signs" (flags).

The Indian fears what he sees; his lips turn pale, and he hides behind a stone and stares at the ships.  He sees, but does "not understand, / Columbus's doom-burdened caravels."  Caravels are small, light sailing ships, like Columbus's.  They are referred to as "doom-burdened" because the appearance of Europeans eventually led to the near-annihilation of the Native Americans.

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muzhdah | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted May 12, 2011 at 12:29 AM (Answer #2)

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Thank you soo much!

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