Stammer (Poem) by Satchidanandan

K. Satchidanandan’s poem ‘Stammer’ (translated from ‘Vikku’ in Malayalam) presents a different perspective of stammer that is commonly considered a speech defect. The poet not only dispels the notion that it is a handicap but also shows how stammer could be perceived in both social and cultural contexts.

Notes on ‘Stammer’ by K. Satchidanandan

Sample Questions

  1. “Each time we stammer
    we are offering a sacrifice
    to the God of meanings”

    • What is stammer compared to in these lines?
    • How does stammer get a spiritual status through these words?
    • Why does the poet think so?
  2. “God too must have stammered
    when He created man
    That is why all the words of man
    carry different meanings.”

    • What is the reason for different meanings in the poet’s view?
    • Why do words carry different meanings in the poet’s opinion?
  3. “That is why everything he utters
    from his prayers to his commands
    stammers,
    like poetry”

    • Who is referred to here as “he?”
    • What quality does the simile attribute to stammer in these lines?
  4. The use of ‘silence’, ‘sacrifice’ and ‘poetry’ make Stammer a different experience. Write a paragraph on the meaning conveyed by those terms in the poem.
  5. A person’s stammer is different from ‘a people’s’ stammer. How does the poet tell us about it through his poem “Stammer”? Give your opinion in a paragraph.
  6. To listen to K. Satchidanandan is to be reminded that there are beautiful and different perspectives. Even a term such as ‘language’ gets a wider sense in his poems. Read the poem ‘The Mad’ and compare it with ‘Stammer’, focussing on their meaning, in addition to the analysis of poetic devices.

Plus Two English Notes and Question Papers of All Chapters