George Johnston, “The Pool”, “In It”, and “O Earth, Turn!”

  1. What does the pool represent in “The Pool”? How does the reference to the pool in “In It” clarify the meaning of the first poem? Notice that the boy in the poem is a part of the thing he gazes on, but the man is a thing apart from the pool and sees it from the outside. What does this suggest about the way our attitude to life changes as our understanding develops?
  2. How does the meaning of “world” in “In It” differ from the meaning of “earth” in “O Earth, Turn!”? Is there any contradiction in the poems? Do all three poems suggest the same philosophy of life?