Study Guide

Twelfth Song of Thunder Man and the Natural World

By Anonymous

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Man and the Natural World

“Twelfth Song of Thunder” is full of images of nature. We get thunder and grasshoppers and clouds and grass. It’s a song that glorifies nature in all its beauty. The song suggests we need to take account of nature. That’s because it’s an extremely important force in our lives. Not only does it sustain us, but it makes us happy. It’s beautiful, awesome, and full of harmony. So even though the poem doesn’t explicitly mention people, it suggests the attitude that we, as people, should take to nature: we should appreciate it, not destroy it like we’re doing with all our SUV fumes and hairspray.

Questions About Man and the Natural World

  1. Why are the “voices” of nature important? Why do we need to pay attention to them?
  2. How does the poem relate the big things of nature (like thunder) to the small things of nature (like a grasshopper)? What’s the relationship between these big and small things?
  3. How does the poem suggest that nature is a harmonious entity?

Chew on This

The poem shows us that the sounds of nature are just as important as the sights of nature.

Sure, as the speaker says, the natural world is beautiful to look at, but humanity isn’t as dependent upon it as the poem suggests.

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