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Examples: He came before I did.

Please come before the meeting starts.






On the Road

Directions: Read the passage and note the prepositions.

Waiting for Sara

I looked around the apartment where I had spent most of my life. The window was open and sounds from the street mixed with the talk show from the radio that my mother always kept on. It seemed that she had even turned the volume up to get her mind off the fact that I was leaving. She sat in her favorite chair, the one I had had to fix at least twice a year for as long as I remember. Who would fix it now? I wondered absently.

The doorbell rang and my sister entered without waiting for someone to let her in.

"You sure picked a good day for going south," she yelled over her shoulder at me as she put the sack of groceries she was carrying on the table. "Arizona couldn't be any hotter than New York today."

Nobody replied. The heat and the occasion had made us quiet. Eleanor continued her monologue. "Where's Sara? When is she coming? She should be here by now. Did she talk to you this morning, Mama?"

The direct question forced Mama to look at my sister. At first she just nodded her head, but then added, "She said she'd be here about now."

"Well, I hope she comes soon. We need some life in this place. You two are carrying on as if it were the end of the world. Look at both of you sitting in your chairs waiting for doomsday." She reached out and put her hand on Mama's shoulder. "Come on now. Mama. He's only going to Flag­staff. That's not far away. You can still talk to him on the phone. And he'll come back here and visit, won't you, Dwight?"

She threw a quick sharp look in my direction. I got up from my chair and came over and sat next to Mama. "Of course I will. You'll be seeing me every holiday."

"And weekends he' ll call you when the rates go down." She put her hand on my elbow and gave it a squeeze.

"Mama, I'll call you even if the rates are up."

"Now don't you go wasting your money like that. You've got to learn to save." The idea of en­couraging me toward thrift aroused my mother from her sad state. She had a purpose again: looking after me.

Questions about the Story

1. Where had Dwight spent most of his life?

2. At the beginning of the story where did Dwight's mother sit?

3. How often did Dwight have to fix the chair?

4. Where is Dwight going to work?

5. How will Dwight keep in touch with his mother?

Directions: Read the passage and fill in each blank with an appropriate preposition. (Not all of the prepositions have been deleted.) Some blanks may use more than one word.

Sara Arrives

I have always been well taken care of. Since my father died __ a heart attack, my two older sisters and my mother have been taking care __ me, their little boy. When my sisters got married and moved out of the apartment, it was just Mama and I sitting alone __ night listening __ the neighbors fight __ door. When I finished college and went __ the Police Academy, Mama was really proud. She thought that I would get a job in the city and be able to stay ___ her. But when recruiters came __ Arizona, I was offered a job __ Flagstaff.

"Where is that girl?" Eleanor was looking out the window __ Sara. "She ought to have been here __ now."

"Give her time. You're always after your sister. Let her alone." Mama got up __ her chair and moved over to the sink and began putting away the dishes she had washed earlier. "She'll come when she can. She has that new baby __home, you know. You can't just up and leave a new baby, you know."

"She can get a babysitter.'' My sister walked over to my mother to help put the dishes __ the cabinet. "They make enough money to get a babysitter."

"You can't trust just anyone to stay __ your children. You'll find that out." Mama returned to her chair and began rearranging the things __ the table. She avoided looking __ me.

"Dwight, come here and help me. You mother's getting lazy in her old age."

"Nothing lazy __ me. There's just no need to put those dishes away now. I'll have plenty of time when I'm alone."

My mother's lack of humor was matched __ her capability to produce guilt. It was sad to see an independent woman __ my mother __ a dependent image __ herself.

"Mama, how can you say you're going to be all alone? Why, every child __ this street is in and out __ your apartment all day long looking __ treats __ your cookie jar. And __ the eve­ning you play cards and bingo __ the ladies on the street. How can you say you're going to be alone. You should be happy that you don't have to pick up __ this boy here."

"Who are you calling 'boy'?"

"You think just because you're going off to be a police detective in Arizona that you aren't our little boy. Just don't you forget who looked after you..."

"Stop your picking on him; let him have a little peace his last few minutes here."

The teasing was interrupted by Sara's coming __ the room __ her little daughter Jeannie asleep __ her arms. The entrance of the grandchild shifted the focus __ me __ her, and my mother immediately took charge of the child's welfare. "Sara, what do you mean __ dressing that child __ that light outfit? Why, she'll catch a draft and get sick in that..."

"Mama, she's all right. I'll just put her __ the bedroom where she can sleep." The child shifted in her mother's arms, but did not wake up.

I followed Sara . the bedroom and watched her lay my niece __ the middle of the old bed. I knew that the next time I saw my niece she would be walking and talking. My sister put a light­weight sheet over her and holding her fingers __ her lips, she motioned __ me to follow her back __ the kitchen.

Questions about the Story

1. How did Dwight's father die?

2. Why does Mama think Sara is late?

3. Who will keep Mama company after Dwight leaves?

4. How was Sara's daughter dressed?

5. What did Sara do with her baby after she arrived at her mother's?

Directions: Read the passage and note the prepositions.

Off to Arizona

In the kitchen She threw her arms around me and gave me a sisterly squeeze. "I'm going to miss you. Who's going to come and look after Jeannie when you go away?" She kissed me and then slipped an envelope into my pocket. I felt the outline of the envelope and knew she had put money in it. I was embarrassed and happy at the same time. It had taken a lot of money to study at the Police Academy, and I knew I would need a lot more to start in Flagstaff.

"Well, you two sure are quiet. Is that how you want Dwight to remember his family when he's off on the other side of the world?" Holding me by my arm she brought me over to the kitchen table where my mother and other sister sat staring into their coffee cups. "Let's have a little laughter. Our boy is going off to be a famous detective." She turned to me suddenly and looked at me as if she were trying to figure something out. She went over to her handbag and pulled out a newspaper with the - headline ARIZONA HEIRESS KILLED IN FALL. "This will probably be your first case, Dwight."

"Deaths from falls are all routine police work; it's not work for a detective, and besides it will be all over by the time I arrive."

"When do you leave?"

"What time is it? 5:15?! I'm going to miss my bus. It leaves at 6:00."

My mother started to cry and held me tightly by the hand. Promising again to call when I arrived in Flagstaff, I headed out the door and down the stairs. I ran to the subway but still had to wait for the train. The man on the platform next to me was reading the paper. I looked over his shoulder and read the headline ARIZONA HEIRESS KILLED IN FALL. The train came before I could read more. But my curiosity was aroused.

Questions about the Story

1. What did Sara put in Dwight's pocket?

2. What did Mama take from her handbag?

3. How was the Arizona heiress killed?

4. What time does the bus to Flagstaff leave?

5. Where did Dwight wait for the train?




New Man in Town

Directions: Read the passage and note the prepositions.

Date: 2015-01-29; view: 2771

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