1. What does George find in the box by his bed and what does he assume? What does
2. Why is the boss suspicious of George? How does George explain his relationship
3. Describe Curley. What does the swamper tell George about Curley’s left hand?
4. Describe Curley’s wife, according to the swamper.
5. Why does George warn Lennie to stay away from Curley? What does George tell
6. Why does Lennie suddenly want to leave the ranch?
7. What does Carlson suggest about Candy’s old dog? How do you feel about
8. Use the description at the beginning of Chapter Two to draw a detailed picture of the
Wee, sleekit, cowran, tim'rous beastie, Small, sleek, cowardly, nervous little beast,
O, what panic's in thy breastie! Oh, what a panic is in your breast!
Thou need na start awa sae hasty, You need not run away so hastily,
Wi' bickering brattle! With a quick scurry!
I wad be laith to rin an' chase thee, I would hate to run and chase you,
Wi' murd'ring pattle! With a murdering shovel!
I'm truly sorry Man's dominion I am truly sorry that Man’s power
Has broken Nature's social union, Has broken Nature’s union between man and beast
An' justifies that ill opinion, And justifies that sad opinion
Which makes thee startle, Which makes you startle,
At me, thy poor, earth-born companion, At me, your poor, earth-born friend,
An' fellow-mortal! And fellow mortal!
I doubt na, whyles, but thou may thieve; I do not doubt that sometimes you may steal;
What then? poor beastie, thou maun live! But so what? Poor beast, you must also live!
A daimen-icker in a thrave 's a sma' request: A corn stalk in a field is a small request:
I'll get a blessin wi' the lave, I will be blessed with more,
An' never miss't! And will never miss it!
Thy wee-bit housie, too, in ruin! Your tiny little house, now, is ruined!
It's silly wa's the win's are strewin! Its impractical walls the winds are blowing!
An' naething, now, to big a new ane, And nothing now, to build a new one,
O' foggage green! Of green foliage!
An' bleak December's winds ensuin, And bleak December’s wind beginning,
Baith snell an' keen! Both severe and sharp!
Thou saw the fields laid bare an' wast, You saw the fields bare and vast,
An' weary Winter comin fast, And the tired Winter coming fast,
An' cozie here, beneath the blast, And cozy here, beneath the hearth,
Thou thought to dwell, You thought to make your home,
Till crash! the cruel coulter past Until crash! the cruel plow passed
Out thro' thy cell. And destroyed your home.
That wee-bit heap o' leaves an' stibble, That tiny, little heap of leaves and sticks,
Has cost thee monie a weary nibble! Has cost you many a tired nibble!
Now thou's turn'd out, for a' thy trouble, Now you are homeless for all of your trouble,
But house or hald. Without house or home.
To thole the Winter's sleety dribble, To live in the Winter’s sleety dribble,
An' cranreuch cauld! And harsh cold!
Name __________________________________________ Period ________
©2009 Secondary Solutions - 40 - Of Mice and Men Literature Guide
Standards Focus: Analyzing Poetry
But Mousie, thou are no thy-lane, But Mousie, you are not alone,
In proving foresight may be vain: Your planning may be in vain:
The best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men, The best laid plans of Mice and of Men,
Gang aft agley, Often go awry,
An' lea'e us nought but grief an' pain, And leave us nothing but grief and pain,
For promis'd joy! For the joy we expected!
Still, thou art blest, compar'd wi' me! Still, you are blessed, compared with me!
The present only toucheth thee: The present moment only affects you:
But Och! I backward cast my e'e, But Oh! I think back
On prospects drear! On sad moments!
An' forward, tho' I canna see, And although I cannot see my life ahead
I guess an' fear! I guess what may be, and I am afraid!
1. What does Slim find “funny” about George and Lennie’s relationship? How does
George explain his relationship with Lennie?
2. Why did George stop teasing Lennie? What does this tell you about George’s
3. Why do you think the girl in Weed claimed that Lennie tried to rape her?
4. Why do you think George tells Slim the story of what happened to them in Weed?
5. Why doesn’t George want Lennie to sleep with the puppy in his bed?
6. How do the men like to spend their money and free time on the weekends?
7. Describe the offer Candy makes to George. What is George’s first reaction? What
does he then decide? What changes his mind?
8. How did Candy get $250?
9. Why is Lennie smiling when Curley comes in?
10. Why does Candy regret not shooting his dog himself?
11. What happens as a result of Curley’s attack on Lennie?
12. What does Slim make Curley agree to? Why does he make Curley do this? What
does this tell you about Slim’s character?
13. How is Candy like his dog? Why is the shooting of Candy’s dog so difficult on
1. How is Crooks’s living quarters different from the men’s bunk houses?
2. For what reason does Lennie go to the barn?
3. How does Crooks react to Lennie when he comes to visit? Why does he react this
4. What do we learn about Crooks’s family life?
5. Crooks teases Lennie about George leaving him. Why do you think Crooks does
6. How does Crooks truly feel about Lennie and Candy’s visit?
7. Why does Crooks doubt George and Lennie and Candy’s goal of acquiring land?
8. What does Curley’s wife say she could have done instead of marrying Curley?
9. How does Curley’s wife threaten Crooks?
10. Why does Crooks say he was “jes foolin’” about working at the ranch? Do you
believe he really didn’t mean it? Why do you think he changes his mind?
1. How did Lennie’s puppy die?
2. Why is Lennie angry at his puppy?
3. Why is Lennie so reluctant to talk to Curley’s wife?
4. Why does Curley’s wife continue talking to Lennie, despite Lennie’s protests? What
reasons does she give for wanting to talk to him?
5. What does Curley’s wife give as the reason the men won’t bother them in the barn?
6. Why did Curley’s wife rush to marry Curley?
7. Why does Lennie become angry with Curley’s wife? What happens as a result?
8. How does Lennie know where to go to avoid getting in trouble?
9. Who finds Curley’s wife?
10. Why does George tell Candy to wait until he is gone before calling in the other men?
11. What does Candy now realize that makes him particularly angry towards Curley’s
12. What does Carlson think has happened to his Luger?
13. What does Curley say he is going to do to Lennie?
14. Why is Candy so upset at the end of this chapter?
1. What is the setting at the beginning of the chapter? Why is this setting familiar?
2. Why do you think Lennie visualizes his Aunt Clara at this particular time? What do
they “talk” about?
3. What does Lennie “see” next? What does it keep repeating to Lennie?
4. How did George suddenly get a gun? Think back…when did he have a chance to
get the gun?
5. What is George’s intention in telling Lennie the “story” again at this point?
6. Why do you think George chooses to shoot Lennie? Is this choice fair to Lennie?
Why or why not?
7. What might have happened to Lennie if Curley got ahold of him?
8. How does George’s version of what happened contradict what actually happened?
Why do you think George lies?
9. Some people may feel that Lennie’s death was a mercy killing. In other words,
George shooting Lennie was to put Lennie out of his misery and help save him from
a worse fate. Do you agree with what George did? Do you think it was a mercy
killing or murder? Explain your reasoning.
10. Do you think Lennie was expecting George to shoot him? Why or why not? Useevidence from the text to support your response.
11. At the end of the book, Carlson said, “‘Now what the hell ya suppose is eatin’ them
two guys?’” Why is this question important to the themes of the novel? What
doesn’t Carlson understand?