Analyzing quotes: Games at Twillight

In the following virtual period we had to select 10 quotes taken from the story we had already read called Games at Twilight written by Anita Desai and analyze them. I worked with Sol Bernusi and Juan Stordeur.


  • …the shed smelt of rats, ant hills, dust and spider webs. Also of less definable, less recognizable horrors.

In this quote Ravi is describing the place where he was hiding, that we can easily identify as a place that does not cause any satisfaction to anyone. No one would choose to be there, no one would be there with no purpose but Ravi had a purpose, he wanted to o overcome his fear, he wanted to win the game. Also the phrase refers to less recognizable horrors, the author is talking about the other creatures darkness can  hide.

  • …they burst out like seeds from a crackling, over-ripe pod into the veranda…  

The author uses seed so we can make a clear mind image of this scene, when the pod is ready it cracks to release it seeds. The door that the mother was keeping closed represents the pod and the seeds the kids that rushed outside as soon as the mother opened the door.

  • All this time no one had remembered Ravi.

Ravi thought that staying hidden would make him win the game, that’s way he made such an effort to overcome his fear in the shed. The other kids didn’t even care about him and they continue playing other games, this lack of attention he received made him very disappointed.

  • Having disappeared from the scene, he had disappeared from their minds. Clean.

If Ravi is not in front of them it does not have even a small place in their minds of thoughts, he seemed to them inexistent. The others do not care or think about him if it is not absolutely necessary. That is why they forgot about him when they were playing hide and seek.

  • They stared, wondering at his reappearance, his passion, his wild animal howling.Ravi’s long desire to win the hide and seek game, the competitive instinct he had against his siblings were enough for him to hide for so long that he’d end up forgotten by everyone. This is the last time that his motivation to compete would be shown at its fullest capacity, once he thinks he’s the winner. The expression on his sibling already hints at how Ravi was completely left behind by them.


  • The motherly Mira intervened

As simple as it may look, this quote gives insight on Ravi’s family and how he and his sibling are being raised. They each have a different personality and dynamics between each other, with Mira occupying a more motherly role when the actual mother is absent. This also indicates how the other children, with Ravi’s being one of them, need to be taken care of all the time.


  • He had sidled away and sat dejectedly on the flower pot. That at least was cut to his own size.

Ravi was too short to reach the keys, he wished he was tall enough but he was not. The flower pot instead was a better place for him to hide, he fitted perfectly well.

  • He had wanted victory and triumph – not a funeral.

The writer uses funeral, a horrible and sad scenarium to describe the way the other kids received Ravi. He wished a victory, he thought they were going to accept their defeat but they did not, they didn’t even know what was Ravi talking about. That is why a triumph turn out to be a funeral. We can also associate the word ‘funeral’ to the fact that he was dead for the other children.

  • He hugged his knees together and smiled to himself almost shyly at the thought of so much victory, such laurels.

When Ravi was hiding he thought of the such pride and happiness he would feel when he won the game, for him to win this game was a great achievement maybe  because he was the youngest.

  • He leapt up as Raghu whacked the wall with his stick…it made him feel protected

In this part of the story Ravi was hiding in the shed, he was lonely and scared and the presence of Raghu made him feel better.

  • He…wondered how many more creatures were watching him, waiting to reach out and touch him, the stranger.

He was so scared that he started to imagine strange and impossible things. Every time he felt something touching that could be anything like dust, for example. He was a stranger in the garage, a stranger for all the creatures that were there.

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