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    Poem: To a Mouse

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    A farmer turning up a mouse’s nest with his plow is certainly an incident from common life. Burns’s language is the country dialect of the Scottish people.
    from William Wordsworth’s Preface to Lyrical Ballads: “The principal object, then, which I myself proposed in these poems was to choose incidents and situations from common life.” & “My purpose was to imitate, and, as far as possible, to adopt the very language of men.”
    or to follow, he is using one of many English verbs that begin with the prefix en-.
    When Robert Burns laments that December’s winds are “ensuing,”
    In Robert Burns’s poem “To the Mouse,”
    the speaker apologizes for plowing under the mouse’s home. Yet, the speaker notes that the mouse is lucky because it did not suffer the anxieties, uncertainties, and regrets of humans. Perhaps Burns was reflecting on the history and future of Scotland, his homeland.
    Burns was an extremely patriotic Scot who,
    like so many others, remained fiercely loyal to Scotland even after it merged with England and Wales to form the United Kingdom in 1707. The Scots had fought for centuries to repel an English takeover, and after failing at that, they struggled for centuries more to resist English rule. In the process, Scotland still managed to maintain a lively culture and to produce eminent figures in politics, science, and the arts.
    topics reflecting on the Scotland Burns so loved
    • The struggle for independence from England
    • The clans of Scotland
    • Bonnie Prince Charlie and the House of Stuart.
    • Life in Scotland in the eighteenth century
    • Scotland’s geography: the highlands and the lowlands
    • Famous Scots
    • The literature of Scotland
    • The music of Scotland
    • Today’s evolved Scottish government
    John Steinbeck’s famous novella, Of Mice and Men,
    draws its title from line 39 of “To a Mouse.” Steinbeck was just one of many authors who looked to literature for meaningful and memorable titles for their works.
    Derived Title: The Sound and the Fury
    by William Faulkner; derived from Macbeth by William Shakespeare
    Derived Title: East of Eden
    by John Steinbeck derived from Genesis 4:16
    Derived Title: Cabbages and Kings
    by O. Henry derived from “The Walrus and the Carpenter” by Lewis Carroll
    Derived Title: Far From the Madding Crowd
    by Thomas Hardy derived from “Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard” by Thomas Gray
    Derived Title: For Whom the Bell Tolls
    by Ernest Hemingway derived from “Mediation XVII” by John Donne
    Derived Title: His Dark Materials
    by Philip Pullman derived from Paradise Lost by John Milton
    Derived Title: I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
    by Maya Angelou derived from “Sympathy” by Laurence Dunbar
    Derived Title: No Country for Old Men
    by Cormac McCarthy derived from “Sailing to Byzantium” by W. B. Yeats
    Derived Title: The Sun Also Rises
    by Ernest Hemingway derived from Ecclesiastes 1:5
    Derived Title: Tender Is the Night
    by F. Scott Fitzgerald derived from “Ode to a Nightingale” by John Keats
    Derived Title: Things Fall Apart
    by China Achebe derived from “The Second Coming” by W. B. Yeats
    his plow
    The speaker has destroyed the mouse’s nest with
    stealing
    The speaker forgives the mouse for
    as a fellow mortal
    How does the speaker view the mouse?
    winter is nearly upon them
    What makes the incident particularly unfortunate?
    According to the speaker, how is the mouse “blest”?
    The mouse has no memory of pastor vision of the future.

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