Part 1: Respect for education and learning. Sacred contrasted to sin in Indian religion
every tree is sacred /and it is a sin / to be rude to a book
Part 2: Description of the strange language of the oppressor and how it changes the culture it conquers
after the soul has been cropped
with the long scythe swooping out
of the conqueror’s face –
the unborn grandchildren
grow to love that strange language?
Striking metaphor for language/tongue as a long scythe: an instrument used to “crop the soul.”
Final lines: ironic contrast between the conquered and future generations response to the strange language.