詩歌分析:Anniversary by Louise Glück (April 1966)

Anniversary by Louise Glück (April 1966)

Well, November’s hit Paris again.

The Times records a mean temperature

Of thirty-eight. Bunched about the Madeleine,

Flower sellers ostrich the future

With their noses rigorously immersed

In stale roses. Or so I remember.

Incredibly, it was the twenty-first

Last week. And my affections turned out limber

After all: oh Stephen, we’d have been

Married now. I’ve still got our

China, some broken, and some linen

But the first I’ve really thought of you for

Months was just tonight when with my fork

Suspended I was saying how I loved New York.





2020諾貝爾文學獎得主Louise Glück的文字簡潔,意象新穎,用字精準,這是一首很美的詩歌。

2022 DSE English Writing Question 3 (Sample)

3. Learning English through Workplace Communication

You write an advice column for Jobs Online magazine. A reader submitted the following question:

My dream is to open a cafe with a few friends, but I’ve just been offered a promotion at my company. The pay is good, but I’m not that interested in the work. Should I leave now or wait a few years?

–Kam Chai, 25 years old

Write a reply to Kam Chai offering your advice.

Dear Kam Chai,

I am writing in response to your question about whether you should develop your career at your current company or pursue your dream of opening a café with your friends. I would suggest you accept the promotion and stay at your company for a few more years instead of giving it up and investing in a business that you have not had any experience before.

First of all, I would like to congratulate you on your promotion at your company. As you may know, the job market has never been more competitive and only competent candidates can have the golden opportunity of getting a promotion. Therefore, the offer of promotion is a good sign that affirms your talent, value and contribution to the company. Your hard work and positive work attitude must have impressed your boss a lot such that you have got a promotion.  As the chance of being promoted is rare, why don’t you just stay on at your company and give it some time to try and see if you would become more interested in the job?

Moreover, as promotion comes with more job responsibilities and requires more sophisticated skills, you might find the job more challenging and exciting. You can take this opportunity to test your ability as well as explore your potential. Meanwhile, you might also find the job more rewarding in terms of salary and work experience. If you have stayed on your job for several more years, you will have a much better resume, in short, an achievement record, which means you will have a bigger bargaining power to negotiate a higher salary. Besides, working with a bigger title at your current company can help you broaden your horizons and build up your professional connection network as you can get to know more closely different kinds of colleagues and clients worldwide. Even if you come away thinking that you do not like the job at all, at least you have tried and gained some valuable work experience such as communication skill and international sense which you would not have learnt from opening a café with friends.

Opening a café requires a large sum of money. As your pay is good, working in your company can help you earn enough money to pursue your dream of opening a café. What’s more, you can always have the chance of opening a café as long as you have enough money. However, if you have given up the job right now, not only will you have a bad resume, but also you will lose the opportunity of developing yourself professionally. It will be very unlikely for you to be able to enter the industry again, not to mention a promotion.  Last but not least, opening a café is a kind of business. When the economy is bad, you will have to run the risk of losing money and even closing the cafe. Have you ever thought about any other options that you would have in case your business fails?

Given the above reasons, I would recommend you stay on your current job to gain more professional work experience instead of opening a café with your friends at this stage.

Yours sincerely,

Chris Wong

2022 DSE English Writing Question 8 (Sample)

8: Learning English through Short Stories

You entered the “Stories of Survival” short story competition. The theme of this year’s competition is “Nature: friend or enemy?” Write a story about a hiker who gets caught in a storm while hiking in the mountains.

Nature: Both a friend and an enemy

It is springtime in early March. The sun is shining through the cracks in the clouds and a mild breeze is blowing in the air on a Sunday morning. Zoe wakes up to the radio broadcast in the sitting room which is forecasting some sunny days with a few passing clouds throughout the week. “The weather feels so pleasant!” Zoe thinks to herself. She then calls her best friend Suzy and asks her to go for hiking together. Zoe and Suzy are just average hikers. They usually do the easy hikes for recreational purpose at weekends. 

Today, they decide to hike up to the Peak from the University of Hong Kong and then continue the climb up to Mount High West because the scenic views up there is superb. Along the way, the sunshine is creeping in through the shaking leaves on the trees and a stream with clear water is flowing gently down the mountain. The air is crispy fresh. When they are halfway up the Peak, to their amazement, there emerges the spectacular view of the Victoria Harbour between Central and West Kowloon. Zoe and Suzy love the cozy feeling that nature brings.

When they reach the Peak, the weather seems to be changing suddenly. The sky is filled with dark clouds and the wind becomes stronger. Suzy decides to stay under the shelter in the park to have a rest. Zoe insists on going on with her hike to Mount High West and leaves behind Suzy. The path to Mount High West consists mainly of steep, narrow and rocky stairs . When Zoe is in the midway, it suddenly rains heavily and becomes stormy. The stairs are too slippery for her to climb downhill. Zoe cannot move but gets stuck there. She is very scared and trembles severely without any help.

Noticing that the weather is getting worse, Suzy thinks that Zoe might be in danger and calls for the rescue immediately. The search and rescue team flying in the helicopter comes in five minutes and saves Zoe successfully. Luckily, Zoe still survives and only suffers from a little panic attack. 

Nature is always changing. It can be both a friend and an enemy to human beings. It can give us a pleasant breezy warm day which is good for our well-being as well as a bad stormy day which is dangerous to our lives. Like a friend, we can enjoy the friendly company of nature; as an enemy, we need to protect ourselves against its threats and attacks. By adapting ourselves to the precarious nature, we can live with nature in harmony and peace.