Refugee Blues Questions & Answers

Hi Everyone!! This article will share Refugee Blues Questions & Answers.

This poem is written by W.H.Auden. In my previous posts, I have shared the questions and answers of Whose Place Is It Anyway, The Adventure of the Speckled Band and Home They Brought Her Warrior Dead so, you can check these posts as well.

Refugee Blues Questions & Answers

Word Galaxy

  • Refugee – a person who goes to another country to escape being mistreated for their religion or politics, or to escape war
  • Blues – a slow sad song, first sung by African-Americans working as slaves in the USA
  • Holes – here, slums
  • Souls – here, people
  • Consul – a government official representing their country in a foreign country
  • Yew – a coniferous tree which has red berry-like fruits
  • Quay – a platform where boats come in to load

Question 1: Choose the correct option:

(a) Who is the speaker in this poem?

i. a Jewish refugee
ii. a diplomat
iii. a journalist
iv. a poet

(b) How is the third line of each stanza different?

i. It addresses someone close to the poet.
ii. It conveys a positive message.
iii. The tone is consoling the listener.
iv. It reverses the mood of the two lines.

(c) What is the tone of the speaker?

i. gloomy
ii. instructional
iii. thoughtful
iv. satirical

Question 2: Where did the narrator and his companion want to go? Why were they unable to do so?

Answer: The narrator and his companion were forced to flee persecution and violence in Nazi Germany. They were terrified of returning to Germany but also were unable to find a safe haven in countries like England or US because they kept tight quotas on the number of Jewish immigrants admitted each year.

Question 3: Why did the consul bang the table? Why was he angry?

Answer: The speaker tried to seek asylum in an unnamed country in Europe but that country frustratingly turned the speaker away. When the consul asked for the passports, the narrator and his companion replied that their passports had expired. The consul became angry and shouted that if they had no passports, they were officially dead.

Question 4: What was the refugee offered by the committee and what did they ask him? What was his reaction?

Answer: When the narrator went to the committee to get the passports renewed, they offered him a chair to sit and asked him to come back next year. The narrator was disheartened and shocked because he did not know where to go.

Question 5: What did the narrator see at the harbour? What did the refugee see in the woods?

Answer: The narrator saw the fish swimming at the harbour as if they were free. He also saw the birds singing freely in the woods. They were all having better lives than he and his companion, a couple of Jews. There were no constraints and politicians to bind them. This shows the fallen state of the humans. The freedom that the fish and the birds enjoyed was not given to the Jews.

Question 6: What did the refugee see in his dream?

Answer: The refugee saw a huge building with thousands of rooms in his dream but none had their names written over it. This shows that there was no place for the refugee to reside.

Question 7: Who was looking for the refugee?

Answer: The soldiers who were deployed to kill the Jews were looking for the refugee.

So, these were Refugee Blues Questions & Answers.