The Wish

Exercise: Question & Answers
Understanding the text
Answer the following questions.

a. What did the child do to the scab on his knee?
The kid picked up the scabs from his knee. He placed the scab he’d carefully plucked with his fingertip on his thigh. Then, with the flick of his finger, he flipped it.

b. What kind of effect did the carpet have on the child?
The carpet made the kid join the fancy world of the carpet. When the kid sees the red carpet, he is flabbergasted. As he walked over the carpet, he noticed how the many shades of colour appeared to suddenly come to life and he supposed each color to something. The colours and his thoughts had completely captivated him.

c. What was he afraid of while walking across the carpet?
He was frightened of carpet snakes and burning coals. Red spots were interpreted as coals on fire, while black spots were interpreted as black deadly snakes. During the walk, he was terrified of being burned down and being attacked by venomous snakes and hot coals.

d. What motivated and encouraged the child to start and continue on his journey?
The next day, a dog he would be given for his birthday is what motivated him to start and continue his journey.

e. What did the child see as he looked down on the black patterns of the carpet?
The kid observed the oily bodies of the snakes tumbling as the black patterns of the carpet.

Reference to the context

a. The writer creates two voices in the story. Who are they?
In the story, the author uses authorial voice and character voice as two different voices. Through the use of third-person narrative, the author transports the audience to an imaginary realm. He is able to let readers think on the fragility of their childhood innocence via the figure of a wonderfully creative little kid. Furthermore, having a kid as a central character in the story allows readers to have a more vivid experience of the magical world.

b. Read the extracts given below and answer the questions that follow.
i. What does the black part mean?

‘The black part’ indicates toxic snakes.

ii. Who is the speaker?
The speaker is a small kid.

iii. Why doesn’t the speaker want to be burnt?
The speaker wouldn’t want a dog to be burned on the next day for his birthday.

c. Which images and metaphors are used in the story?
The story is a complete package of images and metaphors. If there had not been the metaphors, there would not have been the story. The first image we see is the scab. Due to the enormous interest of the child, the scab is an unique obstacle he can never face.

The carpet comes alive with its image in his thoughts. The carpet thus becomes a metaphor for the difficulties facing the child in achieving his objective. The red dots seem to be hot coals that may burn him.

The black portions are venomous snakes that are evil, deceit and tentation. The child’s fear of crossing the carpet compares to the anxiety he feels as he grows up in the face of actual barriers in his maturity road.

d. Summarise the short story “The Wish” in about 200 words.
Story has been summarised earlier, refer to the first page.

e. The story shows the events through the eyes of the narrator and the child. Comparing the two styles, who presents a more interesting or effective view for the readers? Why?
The scab is the first thing the author shows us as an example of metaphor. The boy’s struggles to attain his objective are symbolised by the carpet. There are red patches on the carpet that look like burning embers. The scab offers a unique challenge to the kid because of his intense curiosity. The dark areas are snakes writhing with poison, signifying evil, deception, and desire. He is never able to resist this temptation. The boy’s fear of stepping on the carpet is contrasted to the anxiety he will have as he matures and has to confront actual challenges along the way. The carpet comes to life in his imagination as he sees it. Overall, Metaphors serve as the foundation for this story’s visuals.

He sees the kaleidoscopic carpet as an adventure. As a witness, he has a clear and exhilarating view in front of him. The red hot coal lumps and snakes that met us earlier are still there, thanks to his alertness. The kid provides the reader with a fresh point of view via his inquisitiveness and vivid imagination. If his visions are real, he is in grave danger, as we think they are.

f. Is “The Wish” a story about self-confidence overcoming fear or about greed? Give your arguments.
This is a story of courage triumphing over adversity. The child gains confidence and a hero’s self-image as a result of the first victory against the scab.
In the wish story, getting over the carpet safely was his biggest challenge. While it’s true that the child wants a dog, it doesn’t appear to be the driving force behind his determination to face and overcome his problem. So, we cannot say greed made him do so. The primary theme of the story is on the necessity for youngsters to overcome their fears by having self-confidence.

Reference beyond the text

a. Do you think our wish can be fulfilled? Why or why not?
We desire many things, Not all desires are satisfied. We require difficult and complex practise to fulfil our goal, desire, interest. Staying calm and making decisions should be our habit if we want to fulfil our desires. Making the right decision takes us along the path we wish to go.

b. Why do you think some people might have a frightening nature? What would you suggest to them to overcome it?
Fear of little things may be a habit for those who lack self-confidence. According to my suggestion, they should utilise their creativity, intelligence, and awareness in new ways, as well as make excellent use of nature as a treatment. Focusing on these things will go a long way. This may be overcome also by learning more about one’s fear, because we can treat it accordingly, if we know about the nature of fear.

c. Write a folktale that you have heard or read.
Story: The limit of Greed (Lobhko Sima)
In one village, there was an old couple, who had spent 90 years in the village. They were very poor. One day, the old man liked to eat Sel and said to the old woman, “Look, old woman! I really like eating Sel roti. You go to the village and ask for rice. I go to the market and ask for oil. And we’ll cook it and eat it.” So he sent the old woman to ask for rice and went to the market to ask for oil.

They both collected some oil and rice. The old woman was very happy that she could eat the cel and started cooking the cel. A total of five cells are ripe.

Then the old man said, “Look, old woman, you must obey me.” You eat two cel rotis, and I eat three. “

The old woman said, “No, no, I’m cooking, so I’ll eat three, you eat two.” Don’t get old, I’ll eat three cooked meals, you eat two.

While doing so, the two got into a fight. Both of them could not eat. The cel rotis were getting colder. As it was not clear who would eat how much, the old man always got up early in the morning, so he thought of a plan and said to the old woman, “Look, old woman!” So listen to me. We both will sleep today putting all the cel roti in the box. The one who gets up early should eat two cells, the one who gets up late should eat three? That old woman agreed to his proposal. Then they slept.

Both woke up the next morning but didn’t get out of bed, if one woke up, he had to take only two cels, so why would he get up first and eat two cells? They both waited for one to get up but nobody actually woke up and thus they spent 3 days and nights.

Neighbors of the village thought that both the old man and woman died. so they entered the door and wondered if they were dead. Both of them were sleeping like they were dead. The villagers, thinking that they were old and dead, tied the two of them together and took them to Masan Ghat. Then he made a pyre and put the old man to sleep on the pyre.

The old man was scorched by the flames. And he said, “Aathu Baba, I will eat two, you old woman will eat three.” and got up out of the pyre. Seeing the old man getting up, the old woman also got up laughing and saying, ‘I will eat three.’

Seeing that the corpses that were about to be cremated were eating two of them and whispering that they were going to eat them, now all five of them were shocked to hear that corpses are going to eat them.


The story “The Wish” is a fantasy story written by Roald Dahl. The story is about a kid’s difficult game strategy. The kid’s game involves crossing a red carpet by stepping on the proper colour. After completing the game, the kid imagines that he would get a dog for his birthday. So, he’s determined to win the game.

A little kid is shown at the beginning of the story picking at a scab that is located on his knee. He carefully picked up his scab, which had fallen to the crimson carpet’s edge. As he got closer to the scab, the carpet’s many colours drew his attention. The red, yellow, and black colors of the carpet took on new meanings for him when he was sitting on the stairway and examining them. He imagined the red dots to be lumps of coal that might burn him, the black areas to be a dangerous snake that could bite him, and the yellow places to be the safe zone for him to walk and cross the big carpet, after which he would be given a dog for his birthday as his reward.

The boy started his journey. He moved cautiously on the yellow path. The beginning was easy. Around the time he reached the middle of the distance, the path bent off to the side, and he had to take a lengthy step there. Black and red spots ahead scared him. His lengthy step was unstable. Waving his hand helped him balance. He rested on the Yellow side for a while.

At a junction of two paths, he goes left because it has fewer black paths. When he gets close to the middle, he realises that he can’t turn around or jump off. He takes another step toward the only yellow spot nearby, and his foot is now only a centimetre from the black patch. A snake of black path raises its head to bite him. Even though he tried his best, he couldn’t keep his balance. Then, he falls and mistakenly touches the black spot and starts crying. The story ends with his mother going outside in the sun to look for him at home.

Overall, The story is about a little boy’s vision of a snake-filled crimson carpet. The author used an inquisitive and creative kid to illustrate early imagination. The kid wanted a dog to finish the difficult game. He tried hard but got lost in the game and failed.

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