Summary of Wrinkles by Arvind Krishna
The poet ‘Arvind Krishna Mehrotra’ talks about the sacrifices of mothers for their children. The title of the poem ‘wrinkles’ is symbolical of the sufferings of a mother right from her childhood till she grows up, is married and then becomes a mother. A mother makes sacrifices for the well-being of her children. The poet in the poem has begun to notice the wrinkles on his mother’s face and he intends to iron out these wrinkles. The poet summons the courage to tell his mother of the first wrinkle which she developed owing to her father who pulled her out from the backyard of his house only to place her in the courtyard of her in-laws. She got the second wrinkle at the time when the poet was developing in her womb.
The third wrinkle became apparent owing to the suckling of the poet which wore away the attractiveness of his mother’s face. The fourth wrinkle was caused when the poet got married to a girl who tore him away from his mother. The poet is ashamed of himself for being apathetic. He now picks up the courage to ask his mother for the girl who she has concealed under the folds of her skin. The poet then continues to say about this girl. He says it is the same girl who was suppressed but who would celebrate the raade festival with complete pleasure. It is the same girl who would love to play hopscotch and the game of pebbles.
In the last stanza, the poet earnestly requests his mother to become the same girl who she was before her marriage. He further tells her that he would bring everything that she would enjoy herself with, only to see her smiling and enjoying the life in full.
1. The poet finds four wrinkles on his mother’s face.
2. The first wrinkle represents the time when she got married and was sent to her in-laws.
3. The second wrinkle represents the time when she got pregnant and the third wrinkle represents the time when she bore her child and suckled him which wore away all her attractiveness.
4. He is seeking the girl who would celebrate the raade festival with utter pleasure, and who would play the game of pebbles and hopscotch with happiness.
5. She used to enjoy the raade festival. She used to immerse the raade seedlings. She used to take bath during Navaratras. She used to play hopscotch and the game of pebbles.
6. The poem ends with the aspiration of the poet who aspires to change his mother back into the girl who knew how to draw enjoyment from all the small things.
Tawi: a river of Jammu
Make bold: becoming courageous
uproot: to pull out or remove
Navaratra: a festival of Hindus, celebrating the birth of Lord Krishna.
tinsel: glittering decorative metallic strips or threads.
Questions and Answers
Thinking about the Poem
Q.1. How many wrinkles does the poet find on the other mother’s face?
Ans. The poet finds four wrinkles on his mother’s face.
Q.2. What does the first wrinkle stand for/represent?
Ans. The first wrinkle represents the time when she got married and was sent to her in-laws.
Q.3. What does the second and the third wrinkles represent?
Ans. The second wrinkle represents the time when she got pregnant and the third wrinkle represent the time when she bore her child and suckled him which wore away all her attractiveness.
Q.4. What is the poet seeking under the wrinkles of the mother?
Ans. He is seeking the girl who would celebrate the raade festival with utter pleasure, and who would play the game of pebbles and hopscotch with happiness.
Q.5. What activities the poet’s mother used to do when she was a girl?
Ans. She used to enjoy the raade festival. She used to immerse the raade seedlings. She used to take bath during Navaratras. She used to play hopscotch and the game of pebbles.
Q.6 What is the poet’s wish as it emerges in the last stanza of the poem?
Ans. The poem ends with the aspiration of the poet who aspires to change his mother back into the girl who knew how to draw enjoyment from all the small things.
CHECK THE FOLLOWING ANSWERS
Q. 1. How many wrinkles does the poet find on mother’s face?
Ans. If we read the poem carefully, we will see that the poet has used the word “wrinkle” four times and “wrinkles” two times. So we can say that the poet has found four wrinkles on the mother’s face. Since the poet has written the last wrinkle as suppression, so there may be five wrinkles on the mothers face.
Q. 2. What does the first wrinkle represent?
Ans. The first wrinkle represents the marriage of his mother, when her father got her married and she was separated from her birth home to another’s home where she had to live her entire life with an unknown person.
Q. 3. What do the second and the third wrinkle represent?
Ans. Second wrinkle represents the time when the child was not born and was in the womb of the mother growing there by sucking every drop of blood in the form of mother’s food.
The third wrinkle represents the time when he sucked the attractiveness of her face by sucking her milk from her breasts.
Q. 4. What is the poet seeking under the wrinkles of the mother?
Ans. Under the wrinkle of the mother, the poet is seeking a young aged girl who is fond of playing hopscotch and the game of pebbles.
Q. 5. What are the activities the poet’s mother used to do when she was a girl?
Ans. When the poet’s mother was a girl, she used to celebrate Raade Festival and immerse Raade seedlings in River Tawi. She used to bath during the Navratras and was fond of playing hopscotch and the game of pebbles.
Q. 6. How does the poem end?
Ans. The poem ends with poet saying that he will bring colours of Raade, colourful stripes for his mother’s dupatta and colourful pebbles for his mother so that his mother would look like a girl as she was in young age. He wishes to bring the happiness and pleasures of her young age so that she would be happy as she used to be in her young age.
‘Making bold today’ is an expression or phrase used in the second line of the poem which means ‘becoming courageous this time’.
Now write the meanings of the following phrases or expressions as used in the poem:
- from the backyard: her own house.
On your blood: food from mother’s womb.
nourished myself: kept myself alive.
took me away: was married.
taking courage: being bold.
seeking under the skin: real face
just for a day: from her home.
1. ‘Paradise lies beneath the feet of the mother’. Sum up the idea in a brief paragraph.
Mother is the greatest gift of God. She is the sustainer of life. Paradise really lies beneath the feet of the mother. This has been told by the Prophet (PBUH). The mother takes great pains to give birth to a child after nourishing it for nine months in her womb. She feeds the body from her body. She will endure to keep hungry but never ever would she let her child be hungry. Nobody can pay back his / her mother. When the child grows up it is his duty to serve her. And if one does this, he is sure to be loved by God.
2. Write a profile of your mother.
The name of my mother is Khatijah. She is forty years old. She is tall and thin and has a beautiful smile. She is a housewife. She is very active and moves around the house very briskly. She gets up early in the morning and keeps everything ready for me. She prepares my breakfast and readies me for school. She always advises me to speak the truth. She scolds me only when I do some serious mistake. She is quite educated and guides me in my studies. My personality is incomplete without her. She has contributed a great part of her life to make me a nice boy. She is a religious lady. She offers prayer regularly without any fail. She also advises me and others to have true faith in God. She always keeps a smile on her face. She never uses abusive language but everyone is persuaded by her sweet words. By holding my finger, she has taught me how to walk and talk. I like her very much.