Mending Wall

The Complex Interpretation of the Mending Wall

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

The poem “Mending Wall” by the prominent American poet Robert Frost has often been viewed as one of his favorite pieces of verse. The basic context of this poem concerns the construction of a stone wall between two neighbors and their individual houses, yet with closer examination into the meaning behind “Mending Wall,” several scenarios can be found which center around “a special paradigm regarding the boundaries between reality and the subjective viewpoint” (Montiero 134) which may reflect the poet’s personal history, due to his love of nature and his desire to share his inner poetical beauty with the world.

Out of all the poems written by Frost, “Mending Wall” best illustrates his poetic manner and his intentions as a storyteller. “Mending Wall,” among other things, appears to be built around the tone of mischief which creates an oral barrier between the neighbors. Yet this mischief is defensively countered by the weaker neighbor, for “he reaches into the past for support and comes up with his father’s proverb–“Good fences make good neighbors” ( Kearns 176).

The two neighbors in “Mending Wall” seem to be concerned with nothing more than territory, but in reality the argument is much more philosophical in nature, i.e. the wall serves as a boundary between divergent outlooks on life, such as clashes based on conservatism vs. liberalism, urbanism vs. agrarianism and religious dogma set against secular humanism. The context of “Mending Wall” suggest that one neighbor is dominant over the other as shown in the line “I let my neighbor know beyond a hill,” which illustrates that “the passive neighbor has been informed that he is like a serf in some Medieval society” (Van Egmond 56). Another symbol that suggest a form of non-dominance on the part of the neighbor is the way “beyond a hill” is applied, “a mark of distance which foretells a lack of communication” (Montiero 174).

However, as is the case with many poems by Frost, “Mending Wall” can also be viewed as the antithesis of political allegory, being that the narrator is not some broad-minded liberal and that the neighbor is not a submissive secondary. As Frank Lentricchia points out, “Mending Wall” “has nothing to do with one-world political ideals. . . good or bad neighbor policies” (251). Thus, this poem distinguishes between two very different types of persons–one who sees mending as an escape from the rituals of everyday life and a source for imaginative explorations, and another who is trapped by the traditions of his forebearers and old New England societal structures.

Several key lines in “Mending Wall” help to illuminate the true character of the narrator as to his views on his neighbor. “I see him there/Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top/In each hand, like an old-stone savage armed,” an indication that “the dominant neighbor wishes to be permanently separated from his secondary self” (Kearns 217), yet it also presents the idea of primitivism as in the separation of Cro Magnon man from his “neighbor” the Neanderthal, the thick-browed savage from ancient Europe who preferred the wilds of the forest over the domesticity of a sheltered society.

In addition, the narrator says that his neighbor “moves in darkness as it seems to me/Not of woods only and the shade of trees” which suggests that the poet no longer sees any plausible reason for repairing the “Mending Wall” year after year and has now retrograded into the psychology of human darkness. As Van Egmond so eloquently puts it, this is evidence that “even on New England farms in the twentieth century, the ways of the savage (the “old-stone savage armed”) continues no matter how transformed the society of Robert Frost” (148).

Within the text of “Mending Wall,” there are several references to the cycle of the seasons as symbols of change and repetition, such as “spring mending-time,” “frozen ground-swell” and “spring is the mischief in me.” According to George Montiero, this theme of seasonality refers to “an ancient ritual predating the Romans. . . an annual reaffirming of boundaries” (169) which can be understood as a metaphor for the rebuilding of the wall, due to the ever-changing environment brought about by wind, rain and snow.

Yet throughout “Mending Wall,” several underlying themes aside from that associated with the seasons can be found within the narrative, namely sarcasm, superstition and mystery. The narrator/farmer puts forth several sarcastic references about his “conservative” neighbor, such as “My apple tree will never get across/And eat the cones under his pines” which indicates that the wall itself is redundant and stands as a symbol of something far more complicated than a mere boundary marker. This sarcasm is replicated when the narrator/farmer states that walls are only necessary as a barrier to keep the farm animals from straying, yet neither neighbor apparently owns farm animals.

The theme of superstition is best represented by the narrator/farmer, for he states that “We have to use a spell to make them (the stones) balance” which conjures up images of witchcraft, especially since Frost spent his early years not too distant from Salem, Massachusetts, the site of the famous Salem witch trials in the seventeenth century.

As to the mysterious elements of “Mending Wall,” the “conservative” neighbor/farmer speaks few words and constantly reiterates his belief that “Good fences make good neighbors.” It seems as if he is letting the narrator/farmer know that isolation and distance is what he desires. Thus, the wall “keeps the neighbors on friendly terms by limiting their interactions that makes it possible for the conservative farmer to keep to himself” (Lentricchia 247).

In conclusion, four specific lines from “Mending Wall” announces the true symbolic meaning of the stone wall–“I let my neighbor know beyond the hill/And on a day we meet to walk the line/And set the wall between us once again/We keep the wall between us as we go.” After all, why does Frost use the term “mending” to describe this structure? What exactly does it “mend”? Obviously, the wall serves as a physical boundary between the two properties of the neighbors, but in reality the wall is a metaphorical paradigm that defines the societal differences between the narrator/farmer and his neighbor “beyond the hill”–one is primitive/pastoral, the other modern/urban. Yet the wall also serves to “mend” the natural landscape, for when viewed from a high elevation, it would appear as a “scar” zigzagging across the terrain as if the land itself had being “mended.”

Bibliography

Kearns, Katherine. Robert Frost and the Poetics of Appetite. Great Britain: Cambridge University Press, 1994.

Lentricchia, Frank. Robert Frost: Modern Poetics and the Landscape of Self. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 1975.

Montiero, George. Robert Frost and the New England Renaissance. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1988.

Van Egmond, Peter. Robert Frost: A Reference Guide 1974-1990. Boston: G.K. Hall, Inc., 1991.

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An Explanation of the Use of Imagery and Figurative Language to Convey the Central Theme in Mending Wall, a Poem by Robert Frost

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

In the poem “Mending Wall”, Robert Frost uses language and paragraph structure in order to develop controversial ideas about the necessity of change and stirring rebellion, and about maintaining individuality.

One of the prevalent themes present in this poem is that of change, and when it is necessary. When describing the uselessness of the wall, the speaker says, “My apple trees will never get across/ And eat the cones under his pines”. Here, the speaker emphasizes that the wall is not needed, and implies that there is no use in mending the wall, therefore advocating for change. The speaker’s believes that the wall is not necessary, shown when he says, “There where it is we do not need the wall” (line 17). He clearly sees no use for the wall anymore and is thinking practically. Logically, maintaining the wall is simply a waste of time and resources, as it is no longer needed. Frost relays the theme of change and rebellion through the speaker’s questioning of old customs as time goes on. After the speaker suggests that they perhaps break down the wall the reaction he receives is, “He only says, ‘Good fences make good neighbors’ “(line 27). The neighbor’s repetition and insistence of this proverb shows his devotion to tradition and his unwillingness to change. This proverb has most likely been passed down over generations, once again reinforcing the idea that the neighbor is obsessed with custom and tradition. The fact that the poem ends with this line suggests that no change was established, and that the wall remained. The young, refreshing voice of change is clearly overshadowed by the elder opinion that change is unnecessary if the current system is working. This is an extremely powerful and controversial message, which is especially interesting during a time of such political uproar in America.

Another message clear in Frost’s poem is that of the importance of individuality. For example, in lines 8 and 9, the speaker says, “And on a day we meet to walk the line/ And set the wall between us once again”. The order of these lines is meant to express the irony of the situation. The only time the two neighbors converse or meet is when they are trying to ensure that they won’t be bothered by each other for the rest of the year. This exposes the American culture as an individualistic one, and subtly criticizes the American belief in autonomy. In addition, when describing the mending of the wall, the speaker says, “One on a side” (line 16). This emphasizes the fact that even when working together towards a common goal, the two are separated. Once again, this stresses the importance of individuality in the American culture; the fact that even when we all want the same thing, we refuse to work together to achieve it, and we look out for our own self-interests first. Lastly, in line 18, the speaker describes himself and his neighbor by saying, “He is all pine and I am apple orchard”. The juxtaposition between these two items is once again meant to describe the separation between the two. Despite the fact that they live in the same neighborhood (and are therefore likely from a similar social class), they are still completely separate beings. Again, through this, Frost hopes to express the idea that individuality is one of America’s core values.

Through his usage of language and his paragraph structure, Frost conveys controversial views on American society and its perception of change and individuality.

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A Comparison of Robert Frost’s Fire and Ice and the Mending Wall

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

Robert Frost was a successful poet for many reasons. He was well known for the diction used in all his poems. Along with diction, he was widely known for the complexity of his poems. Imagery also was key in many of Frost poems because of the way he described events, people and places. He appealed to many Americans because of the life lessons told in many of his poetry. In all, Frost was one of the most popular poets in America’s history.

The diction in Frost’s poems stood out to many of his readers because of the elementary language he used, which made his poems easy to understand. To make his poetry easy to understand, he ventured away from difficult words. The elementary diction was shown in “Fire and Ice” and “The Mending Wall”. “Fire and Ice” is an example where the diction draws attention to a certain concept or idea for the reader to understand. When Frost uses the antonym words “fire” and “ice”, he is making a point to the reader that the words are representation of love and hate. In “The Mending Wall”, there are examples of elementary diction that noticeably portrays Frost intentional word choices. Frost says that, “there where it is we do not need the wall”(Frost 23).

Another focal point is Frost’s poetry was complexity. The messages of his poems are interesting because he does not usually talk about the main idea directly but by using figurative language to get his ideas across. Frost was also commonly known for writing different types of poems like his most humorous one, “Home Burial”. One of Frost’s most complex poems is “The Road Not Taken”. In “The Road Not Taken”, Frost uses complex metaphors to describe the story within the poem. “Two roads diverge in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by” (Frost 19). When Frost uses a metaphor about the “two roads that diverge”, he is referring to the two paths in life that there are to take.

Imagery in Frost poems was extremely vivid to describe events, people and places. Frost often related nature imagery with romantic views. In “Desert Places”, Frost uses snow to describe an image of loneliness. For example, the word “snow” is described as expressionless, “A blanker whiteness of benighted snow/ with no expression, nothing to express”(Frost 12). “Birches” is a typical example of the use of nature imagery that Frost uses to talk about the dislikes of the pressures of social life. While Frost does not specify exactly which burden he is targeting, the reader can easily piece together enough evidence from various parts of the poem to depict Frost’s meaning. When Frost compares ice to crystal shells, he uses descriptive words to enhance the image to the reader. The words “shattering and avalanching” (Frost 11) are used to enhance a visual image for the reader.

Robert Frost was most famous for the way that he structured and managed his career. Frost became most popular because of the stories told within his poetry. In Frost poetry, he avoided any explicit language. He also did not discuss the economy or anything dealing with politics. Many other Americans became aware of who Frost because he was the first American poet to read poetry at John F. Kennedy’s inauguration. He read “The Gift Outright”, which was a poem that was written especially for the inauguration.

In all, Frost was known for the elementary diction that he used in all of his poetry. Along with diction, he was widely known for the complexity of his poems. His use of imagery was descriptive in a way that it painted a picture for his readers. The life lessons that were depicted in his poems were one of many reasons why Americans favored him. Altogether, Frost was one of the most popular poets in America’s history.

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The Religious Purpose in The Road Not Taken, Stopping by the Woods on a Snowy Evening, and Mending Wall by Robert Frost

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

Frost’s Religious Purpose

Robert Frost is a famous American poet who writes about nature in most of his pieces. His work every now and again using settings from rural life in New England in the mid twentieth century, utilizing them to inspect complex social and philosophical topics. Frost went through rough times with the lose his children and his wife leaving him. He later moved to the countryside to begin writing his poems. Some of his work The Road Not Taken, Stopping by Wood on the Snowy Evening, Mending Wall, is used and interpreted for religious purposes. choosing a path that one would enjoy is a big risk that could take years to overcome, if it does not work out.

Frost’s poem The Road Not Taken is an unquestionably metaphoric poem that can be interpreted by its attitude as a symbol of religion. The poem opens up with the splitting of the two roads which can be seen by the narrator as old age coming fast. The last two line of the first stanza states the the narrator “looked down one as far as I could to where it bent in the undergrowth”(N.p.). Seeing the depth of the two lines shows the readers the the narrator has a long way to go. In the first line, the word “wood” can mean a decision or a crisis. In consideration, his hesitation causes him inevitable distress to mediate more than one particular strategy.

The narrator’s stress leads to him choosing a road but there is doubt in his mind. This may mean that he may have made the wrong decision even if it did not matter what road he takes. The road that was taken eventually led him to his destination, but he does not see it that way. In one way, the poem discusses ‘taking risks in life’. Rather than picking an road not off the beaten tracks – which has protection and security inserted in it, If one picks a street not taken, the likelihood of surmounting numerous odds are brought to question. Nothing can be underestimated. One is in the domain of the obscure and there are no instant answers or bearings or mediations. The poet naturally brings out certain attributes of the individual. He plays with the oblivious, in this situation, death, and desire to die. The last line of the poem is interested in translation relying upon the reader. The narrator could think about to abandoning a general public, intending to move at a quick pace. He appears to be unwilling to be a piece of this automated society, wishing a separated life. For taking such a religious choice, one needs a void glass, a young mind.

Christianity , and so far as that is concerned, all religions have some “unconfirmed” convictions as its center values and anticipate that the adherents will adhere to these qualities in all. They need to take the way as of now tread by others. No experiences are endured. The individuals who take after shouldn’t have any knowledge or thinking abilities. They must be quiet and obey to the bearings. Jesus has dependably said that the road to hell is a parkway while the street to nobility is a lot more difficult. There is also a lot of faith put into one of his famous work Stopping by Wood on the Snowy Evening.

This is a straightforward sentimental piece on its surface. It is additionally a poem with levels of complex purposeful anecdotes. The journey in the open is a moral story of the travel and a profound adventure other than being obvious of other more philosophical issues of life. The lyric is straightforward in dialect yet certain bizarre intimations trigger off further implications. The words are momentous in its chain-like rhyming plan and its cadence, as well. The simple statements are strangely underscored by the sudden change of tone.

Certain pieces of information in the poem make us feel that even the journey is of a simple life as well as the trip of a religious or profound life. The speaker is a religious man who has “promises to keep”. The dazzling woods are lovely as well as dark. The darkness could be the essence of evils in the path of the religious man. The attractions of the enticement of common life. The horse is his soul or reason. The man must not fall a casualty of “simple” wind and happy with snow. Their softness is tricky, for they are baiting, icy, dull and fiendish. In this feeling of the religious purposeful anecdote or imagery, the speaker is a sort of Everyman on his Christian adventure, and he is made plans to proceed after practically being enticed and halted by the attractions of common delights. This situation can be in great relation to Mending Wall.

Mending Wall speaks to two view purposes of two distinct people, one by the speaker and the other by his neighbor. Not just does the divider go about as a divider in isolating the properties, additionally goes about as a block to friendship. From the narrator’s view, barriers lead to depression. The narrator can’t resist the opportunity to notice that the normal world appears to despise the presence of a wall as much as he does and in this manner, unknown gaps show up from nowhere and fall for reasons unknown. The piece depicts the absence of friendship between two neighbors, they know each other however they are not companions.

This piece is a miserable reflection on today’s general public, where man-made barriers exist between men and countries in view of segregation of race, rank, statement of faith, sex and religion. Then again, the neighbor has distinctive views. He trusts that ‘Great wall make great neighbors.’ He considers walls as important to make physical obstructions and for patching relations. Considering the artist’s neighbor, physical barriers assert the privileges of every last person. Walls likewise remain for building trust.

The irony in this piece is the expression the narrator’s neighbor repeats, “Good fences make good neighbors.” On the one hand, it appears to be odd, as walls separate people. The narrator guesses, however, that on account of herders, a barrier avoids blending of animals and resulting question. The irony is that despite the fact that the narrator and his neighbor have little in like manner, the mutual yearly obligation of repairing the wall unites them in keeping up a great wall, which actually, serve to make them great neighbors by giving them a chance to bond over this common job.

Frost is an uncommon twentieth century artist who accomplished both colossal prominence and basic praise. In an essay on an early paper of poems, Frost demands that a lyric “will forever keep its freshness as a metal keeps its fragrance. It can never lose its sense of a meaning that once unfolded by surprise as it went,” a perception that applies to a large portion of his three hundred-odd sonnets. When his work came into course, its freshness and misleading effortlessness brings crowds that shied far from more troublesome artists, for example, T. S. Eliot and Wallace Stevens, while critics came to perceive the thought and feeling that so regularly plague these “simple minded” poems.

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The Concept of Discovery in Home Burial and Mending Wall by Robert Frost and Notes on a Scandal by Zoe Heller

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

Indeed discoveries do challenge our inherent understanding of our lives and our humanity; however, if we allow complacency to overtake a desire to pursue discoveries, individual, societal or spiritual, it is then that the discovery becomes an unwanted component of a known existence.

Robert Frost, a renowned turn of the century modernist, explores the (notions of discovery) through his poems ‘Home Burial’ and ‘Mending Wall’. Through his poetry he conceptualises the essence of discovery in terms of the minutia, the everyday, the essence of the human condition. In this way, he provokes us to alter our behaviour to not only accept what is around us, but to challenge its worth.

The cinematic rendition of Zoe Heller’s ‘Notes on a Scandal’ (Eyre, 2006), resonates with Frost’s thematic prowess in the light of female empowerment. Heller cleverly utilises two feminine protagonists to challenge the patriarchal hegemony as a contextual consequence. What creates an intense and integrative cohesion in the film is the disparity of power and in particular, the characterisation of Barbara whose own sexual denial results in the subjugation of her feminine subliminal psycho-sexual object. There is as such, no solidarity in the threads of dialectic philosophy, rather an overarching discovery that the dualism within knowledge when conjoined with power and concomitantly leads to a central disintegration of both protagonists moral and personal cohesion.

Robert Frost’s ‘Home Burial’ employs the use of conversation, a modernist meditation, allowing meaning to be derived in snatches from the simplest of interactions. A fracturing of the convention of linear poetry and the art of traditional form.. The poem shames us, “Tell me if it’s something human”, a declarative plea reveals the husbands need to alert us to our own numbness, to the existential nihilism that revoked the right for interpersonal interaction on an equal scale. As with the like of Eliot, the emasculation of the man has engendered a physical discovery that brute strength could be used to exert dynamic truisms “a man must partly give up being a man with womenfolk”. A contextual discovery Frost was willing to share philosophically, exposes itself through the conceptualisation of acceptance. An emotional revelation that the “blind creature” holds the key to equanimity whilst the male subjugator “I didn’t see at once” punishes himself with his own lack of self-insight. There is much paradigmatic shifting within the poem, alluding to the manner in which the stasis of relationships on micro and macro levels had altered. “Can’t a man speak of his own [lost] child”, followed by a plaintiff imperative “Amy! Don’t go to someone else this time”. Essentially, Frost is rebelling against his societal and contextual truths, challenging us to realise that the roles are inverted “one is alone and he dies more alone” that “someone coming down the road!” is the woman’s salvation – the catalyst between denial and the exposition of passion. Frost leaves us with two important contradictions, one is “you think talk is all” and the reversion to the male stereotype “I’ll follow you and bring you back by force. I will – “. Frost’s ambiguous certainty frames the human condition with expert knowledge. He does not distance us from the realisation that human nature is unpredictable and therefore changeable.

Similarly, Heller’s intellectualisation of Barbara’s psycho –sexual denial and social disconnection has lead to her submission to a life of ‘notes’ while observing her ‘scandal’ is realised through a direct and rather obscene divergence of the power balance between the two women. The mise-en-scene, heralds Bar’s confrontation of Sheba’s infidelity, implemented through the cinematic actualisation of an outdoor set, with the intimate proxemics, a perversion of the traditional notional ‘lover’s table’, in winter. As the temperature drops, Sheba confronts her cognitive dissonance; the need for physical replenishment through the boy and its consequences. The shot is compact and level, zooming in on Sheba’s hands, youthful and sensual, juxtaposed against Bar’s, aged and wrinkled. This figurative synecdoche of the ‘upper hand’, the non-diegetic statement after Sheba asks permission to “go inside, I’m freezing” eerily underpinned by an extreme close-up of the older face, smug expression, determined “I realised by doing nothing I could gain everything”. Bar’s internal idealism externally expressed through the false exculpation of Sheba’s indiscretion indemnifying her explicit ability to manipulate the relationship.

Frost’s ‘Mending Wall’ is an examination of the impermanence of man seen through the perspectives of a mischievous farmer and his atavistic “neighbour”. The poem operates on two different levels, the base a narrative; however the deeper overtone is an intellectual philosophical debate. The reverse syntax and declarative ambiguity of “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall” frames the questioning of societal norms, whialt sublminally challending th reader to question their own need for temporal, spatial and metaphysical boundaries.. Frost’s reiterates this animosity within his own ambivalence asserting that in the eternal notionality of understanding the human condition pertains through the mystical tinge of an animatory force “that sends the frozen-ground swell under it”. For Frost, the procedure of “[setting] the wall between us once again” is symbolic as the physical divide is a symptom of the intellectual inability to transcend beyond this human construction. The ironic mystique is never far away as Frost unearths a sense of the intricacy, the delicate balance of the human condition “we have to use a spell to make them balance” as he diminishes the significance of their “game” with his eidetic “oh”, reminiscence of Eliot’s “Do I dare?”. The contextual metaphor “he is all pine and I am apple orchard” allows us to simply disinter the complexity of contrast of rationale between the polyphonic utterances, as the “Good fences make good neighbours” legitimises the older farmer requisite discourse, and his need to objectively justify the entire process of bifurcation through a proverbial aphorism. The narrator wishes to stylistically incept “a notion in his head”, he questions what he is “walling in or walling out”, on an emotional level or protection versus corporeal defence. However, Frost comes to the realisation that “[he’d] rather he said it for himself” an element of internal transcendence from the crushing prosaic negativism to the existential understandings of humanities intrinsic alienation encapsulates the divergent ideological landscapes of the two, and explains in rather oblique terms how humanity, under the Modernist influence is seen to have lost its ability to connect, an allusion to a Yeats paradoxical warning of the apocalyptic messiah “the darkness drops again”.Tgus, the persona’s move “in darkness” and a closet mindset “he will not go behind his father’s saying”, results in an ironic cyclical form which mirrors the content with the conclusion of the repeated truism “Good fences make good neighbours.” This use of constructive parallelism and reverse parallelism fails to comply with the full totality of the idiomatic ‘mending wall’ as ultimately we are all meant to fall between the aesthetic and the intellectual interstice and live alone and die alone. It is the essential modernist truth.

Similarly, in order to display a sense of disparity on an ideological level, Heller chooses an intensity of existential disquiet to elevate Sheba’s peril both sexually and psychologically; as such the mise-en-scene is as uncomfortable both for the viewer as it for Sheba. The editing commands intense proxemics as both women, now connected physically, elucidates Barbara’s inherent need for physical intimacy. She strokes Sheba’s arm sensually upwards and downwards demanding that her victim remain sightless as she attempts to rationalise this act as comfort rather than seduction. The closed nature of the scene and the figurative discomfort of Sheba psychologically, set’s a conduit of inverse revulsion. It is the first time Barbara is unaware that her suppression of her sexual orientation has failed. The body language of both women is divergent and the emotional disconnection is portrayed expertly through tight camera work and chiaroscuro lighting. Sheba’s subliminal cognition of Barbara’s needs, results in an unearthing of her entrapment and disempowerment.

Both texts herald a divergence in the nature of discovery, rationalise them as innovative, discomforting and radical in both the means they are made and their physical construction. In each text the form and medium act as a conduit for the literal and figurative unearthing of the person who is entering into their world.

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The Idea Of Good Fences Make Good Neighbors In Mending Wall By Robert Frost

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

In this essay we are taking a look into poetry and try to see what Robert Frost was conveying when he wrote this poem. “Mending wall”, a short poem that has two neighbors whom have a wall that continues to decay over time and they both for some reason continue to fix it every year around the same time. As this short poem continued on we are reading and trying to understand what the speaker’s primary goal is in the end. He has land on one side with apples and his neighbors the other with pines. The speaker it seems does not believe in walls but still repairs it due to it being there, as this neighbor does believe in them and won’t change his mind, as he throughout the poem will say, “Good Fences make good neighbors”. So, in question, does the neighbors’ say about the wall bring the two together because of an old tradition and does it create good neighbors.

When we look at the beginning of this poem, we see that the speaker describes the wall, and the causes of it as he continues to see the damage over the past year. “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall, that sends the frozen-ground-swell under it, and spills the upper boulders in the sun; And makes gaps even two can pass abreast.” We can only assume now he is talking about some sort of tree that has grown next to the wall and it roots with the season are causing the wall to fall and create gaps that more than one person can walk through. Even here, he states that the, “The work of hunters is another thing” even the hunters, and their dogs that come and go, climbing over the wall they also knock down the wall. So it seems that nature will and its surrounding will no matter what continue to knock this wall over no matter how they put the rocks back up.

In this poem the speaker continues to walk the line of his wall, it seems he does not like wall at all yet he continues to assess the damages. In the poem the speaker refers to his neighbor as an, “old stone savage” he sees him walking the line as well but carrying a rock to repair the wall. I am not quite sure what the author was trying to convey other than maybe making him just an old man stuck in his old ways and because the wall has been there and yet divides their property line, he won’t let it fall under his watch. So we look back in this poem and see that the one neighbor does want the wall and will repair it for whatever his old ideal is. But we have the speaker who does not want the wall and does not really care for it, but yet he continues to walk the wall to assess the damages. I would have to say that the real defender and repairer of the wall is actually the speaker himself, he is the one who notifies the neighbor in the spring for repairs, he also walks the wall all year identifying the issues.

This poem is great for showing that there are types of ideal that show there is a divide and a pride for one’s property. It shows the two neighbors are also individuals as they tend their own areas of land. But at the same time the saying of, “Good Fences make good neighbors” the reason I say this is no matter the two old men and their different view and ideal, they still meet each other and converse in and old fashion, it may just be to mend the wall but they are still neighbors and conduct themselves as such. It shows they have a neighborliness duty to make sure their property line whether they both agree on the way they tend to it every spring. This wall may restrict them in dividing their property and maybe a more developed relationship but nonetheless they still have one. So in question, does the neighbors’ saying about the wall bring the two together because of an old tradition and does it create good neighbors. I think it does, whether it is in a formal fashion or as property owner who are set in their old ways but yet still mend to the wall even though they don’t really have a need for it with no cows.

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A Theme Of Personal Boundaries In Mending Wall By Robert Frost

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

Robert Lee Frost was born on 26th March 1874 in San Francisco, California. The American poet was praised for his depictions of rural life, and his realistic verse portraying ordinary people in everyday situations. He was an ordinary man who loves nature and uses simple words in his work. One among his famous poems was ‘Mending wall’. It opens Frost’s second collection of poetry, North of Boston, published in 1914 (Wikipedia). In this poem, he has explored the reason why people create boundaries around them. “Personal boundaries are the limits we set for ourselves as individuals in relationships”. This essay focuses on the encounter between the speaker and the neighbor regarding the boundaries set in human life.

The neighbor expresses the view that good fences make good neighbours. He believed that setting clear boundaries between neighbors ensures a healthy relationship between them, and assures that the relationships are mutually respected. Thus he insisted on building a physical barrier referred to as ‘wall’ between them. This wall is created in harmony between the neighbors to protect and respect each other’s privacy. And if one feels that the boundaries are loose; they leads to emotions then it is the time to reset the limits. The resenting of boundaries is considered as the time for mending wall. This is a tradition followed from his father since many years. The neighbour does not want to clarify the reason for his attitude, and says that he took up his father’s attitude. Moreover boundaries are a measure of self-esteem; an indicator showing that one deserved to be treated well. They set the limits for acceptable behaviour from those around him/her, determining whether they feel able to put one down, or take advantage of one’s good nature. At the same time having healthy boundaries does not mean that rigidly saying no to everything. Nor does it mean cocooning oneself from others.

In addition boundaries help not to compromise one’s value for other people. If a person compromise his/her values it can lead to frustration and finally ruins the relationship. To set boundaries one should know his/her values, believes morals and should be true to one. If not it may set a loose or rigid boundaries. Besides keeping other people from coming into one’s space it also keep one from going into the space of others and abusing them. And these imaginary lines move up and down based on our circumstances.

On the other hand the speaker feels that rigid boundaries can lead to chronic loneliness. He presents this activity as insignificant. He is a person who wants to have a close relationship with others. In his point of view the wall is unnecessary as he is not going to exploit his neighbor. He doubts the activity of his neighbor of constructing a barrier as the apple trees and pine trees neither will get confused nor will eat the fruits of each other. The speaker felt that his neighbor is an uncivilized man who takes over the path of his father without knowing it. He considered him as a man of old age with his stone weapons, who is still in darkness. In the author’s view the wall does not maintain a good relationship but only keeps the neighbor away from him. In a like manner the boundaries keep people away from one.

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Analysis Of Robert Frost’s Use Of Literary Devices In Mending Wall

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

When it comes to poetry, it is not often that it it is studied without reflecting on the famous poet Robert Frost. Robert Frost was a troubled man with an intricate pathway in life that followed to an unexpected path to success. His life was translated into his poetry, always being consistent to his roots and his rural lifestyle. “If popularity could be regarded as the measure of a poet’s eminence, Frost would certainly be among the most eminent poets of the English language”. Robert Frost’s opinion of society within his poem the “Mending Wall” is conflicted but we are able to see that he considers both his opinion but also the opinion of his neighbor. Society is either thrusting to be separate or parts of it are allowing the possibility for change. The hesitation could be the result of fear and Frost explores this possibility throughout “Mending Wall.” Throughout the poem, Frost’s use of literary devices such as metaphors, symbolism, and imagery allows us to see that the narrator is struggling with his own beliefs and accepting the beliefs of his neighbor. But also his neighbor’s stubbornness and ignorance to the facts around him.

Frost starts his poem the “Mending Wall” with a line that has more meaning behind it than the words written. “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall” which is then repeated later on for a second time. This is not the only time Frost does this throughout the poem. He also repeats “Good fences make good neighbors” and then ends the poem with this line. The repetition of these two lines was a calculated move made by Frost. There is an importance to why Frost chose to do so. This plan of action enabled these lines to be engrained into the audience’s mind. Frost was allowing people to envision that he was attempting to stay unbiased about his relationship with the way society should function. That in truth he was not certain whether he believed society should work as a community or as separate unities within a community. In actuality though, Frost considered that we should coexist cohesively together. “The poem’s voice, belonging to a narrator who is in character, is open and relaxed, yet inward and musing; it welcomes the reader, at the same time enticing him into a riddle which becomes essential to the poem’s meaning”. This riddle becomes the reader’s riddle making us question whether or not the wall is really a necessity in our lives and our society. The narrator is considering this struggle among himself and whether or not his own views match that of his neighbor.

Even though the above lines describe both opinions in the argument of whether or not we should be divided from our neighbor or peacefully coexist and whether or not Frost justified these views, there were other parts of “Mending Wall” that shadowed Frost’s feelings on the topic. He turned it into almost a comical topic when he personified trees and their abilities to move.

“There where it is we do not need the wall:

He is all pine and I am apple orchard.

My apple trees will never get across

And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him”.

We can see here the imagery Frost uses alongside personification and quite frankly symbolism as well. The way Frost used imagery, although simplistic, allowed us to imagine an apple tree wobbling over to the pine tree and snack on his pine cones without permission. This is how much the narrator finds this wall that he is building, absolutely absurd. The wall is not something that is necessary to their survival as farmers, yet it is a symbol of the stubbornness his neighbor holds. “The poems about nature by Frost make a delightful reading on account of their skillful handling of the poetic devices like images and personifications. Personification is generally employed to add vitality to descriptions of nature. The personifications of the Romantic take the form of brief metaphor, while Frost’s are nearly always extended analogies”. Their crops, pine trees and apple trees, are far enough apart that there would be no possible way that either would cross over the others land, unless they grew legs and wondered over. Frost is implying that his neighbor’s ignorance to that fact, is what is forcing them to perform this menial chore. It could also be that his neighbor is so stuck in his ways that, even considering this logical point about their crops, doesn’t stop him from building the wall. The same can be said about the narrator though, even though he understands the absurdity that is accompanied with building the wall he does not stop either. The uncertainty of the narrator is based off of his own fear of the unknown, that in fact it is a possibility that “Good fences make good neighbors”.

After awhile Frost’s “Mending Wall” takes on a more serious tone. He goes from a lighthearted man joking about walking, thieving trees to a more serious man evaluating the man beside him. The narrator can sense the importance of the task at hand just by analyzing the man before him.

“I see him there

Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top

In each hand, like an old-stone savage armed.

He moves in darkness as it seems to me,

Not of woods only and the shade of trees”.

This passage is what changes the tone of the poem. Frost’s use of imagery here allows us to see the seriousness of this old man doing back breaking work. It brings a change to the narrator’s thoughts. “Eventually the narrator’s speculation about what might not love a wall turns to a description of the difficulty of wall-mending and into a questioning of why he and his neighbor have met to carry out the task in the first place. His range of tone as he does so moves from seriousness to whimsy to be-musement to cajolery. As is usual in Frost, that movement is heightened by a tension between spoken English and formal meter”. The change in his tone changes the meaning to this poem. We can evaluate how the narrator considers how the building of the wall affects his life. He considers it to be just a chore but as he looks onto his neighbor he considers the meaning the wall has to his neighbor. Here’s this old man doing back breaking work because he believes in the wall and the meaning behind the wall.

The wall described in the “Mending Wall” is a symbol among the characters within the poem but also the readers of the poem. “Many critics of Robert Frost’s Mending Wall” have seen the poem as a symbolic statement about barriers men create between themselves. For them the wall is a visual icon for these barriers”. The wall allows them to lessen their fear about what is beyond their home. The wall is their security from what lies beyond in the world and a security of the fear they hold for the unknown. The wall is Frost’s way of expressing how people want to remain separate from their neighbor. Every year they meet to build this symbol of a wall. Frost knew that simple objects like walls often allow a person to feel comfortable even if the wall doesn’t actually protect anything in the physical world but rather protects their subconscious. Robert Frosts perfectly executed use of imagery, personification and symbolism illustrates how the world functions together as a society.

Works Cited

  1. Chelliah, S. “The Poetic Art and Vision of Robert Frost with a Focus on His Pragmatic View of the Relationship between Man and Nature: A Brief Analysis.” Language in India, vol. 17, no. 11, Nov. 2017, pp. 98–112. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ufh&AN=126488938&site=eds-live&scope=site.
  2. McNair, Wesley. “Robert Frost and Dramatic Speech.” Sewanee Review, vol. 106, no. 1, Winter 1998, p. 68. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=prf&AN=541482&site=prclive&scope=site.
  3. Morrissey, L. J. “‘Mending Wall’: The Structure of Gossip.” English Language Notes, vol. 25, no. 3, Mar. 1988, p. 58. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=hlh&AN=4971124&site=eds-live&scope=site.
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Literary Analysis Of Mending Wall By Robert Frost

June 7, 2021 by Essay Writer

I cannot talk about whether Frost was very good with the shovel in the field, but only with the pen in his hands. Robert Frost conceived his poem Mending Wall in his time as a farmer, on the occasions when he met his neighbor to repair the stone wall that divided the properties of both. I have chosen this valuable genuine and beautiful work because it shows us the simple of the author but at the same time his attitude of social activist. His mind transports us with everything that happens today with the borders of many countries, to be able to write this poem in 1914 Robert Frost had a futuristic vision and left the path already sown for future social and political activists of what would come to happen.

The Mending wall poem demonstrates Robert Lee Frost’s simultaneous command of the lyric verse, dramatic conversation, and ironic commentary. First the narrator of the poem begins by saying that there is something, a force that is greater than himself and that can make the wall. Collapsing, such a force does not secure that wall, it is a force that has a convex shape, quoted as a bulge – a part that is rounded or bent, and not flat enough to support the wall. “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall, that sends the frozen-ground-swell under it”. He goes on to mention that such an unknown thing makes holes, citing the size of the holes and saying that even two people can pass each other, a passage that clarifies that two people who were separated by the wall can come together, come together”. As we can see Robert Lee Frost was a man who lived in the country life and as a poet portrayed this in his poems, this is what we realize in “The Work of Hunters is another thing where they have left not a stone on a stone, but they would have the rabbit out of hiding, so please the yelping dogs”

Where the narrator quotes the work of hunters, which is very common in their social environment, speaking of perfection from their work, where they build perfect walls without dropping a stone, leaving no gaps, yet without anyone knowing how it happened and who did it, where the force commented by the narrator is acting and causing openings that leave the hare unprotected to the satisfaction of the dogs, and he doesn’t know who broke the wall to make the breaches. From the passage “I let my neighbor know beyond the hill and on a day we meet to walk the line and set the wall between us once again” the narrator tells of his neighbor, comments that one day along the line of his life he will find this neighbor and fix the gap in the wall that divides both and will keep that wall without gaps, but for the repair of this wall there are stones that are easy and others very difficult to stand. They are shaped like a ball that makes it leave the wall unrepaired, so this passage shows the difficulty that exists to repair the wall between two people and that we often need magic so that the wall remains without breaches that is not looking at the wall, give it no mind, giving it time until one day it resolves to come back and fix past breaches.

Repairing this wall requires some effort to manipulate it, your fingers are rough to fix and maintain it, and this repair is like an outdoor game where one is on either side. The narration proceeds even further, citing now the differences that exist between them and the narrator states that this prevents him from approaching his neighbor, bringing together in this passage a reflection of what the neighbor says “Good fences make good neighbors”. Concluding the conflict between them, because they are only good neighbors because there is a good fence that divides the space of each one and limits the individualities and freedom of each person. “He is all pine and I am apple orchard, my apple trees will never get across and eat the cones under his pines, I tell him. He only says, ‘Good fences make good neighbors.’ This reflection is also questioned by the narrator, he interlocuters with the reader asking: ‘Why do they make good neighbors?’

Demonstrating a wish, he says that before building any wall he would want to know what he could include and what he could exclude so as not to offend anyone, because there is something, a force he does not know that wants the wall on the floor. The narrator says that what exists is a kind of magic, quoted as ‘goblins’ – something that does not exist, which is in the imagination, but says it cannot be imaginary and prefers that its own neighbor tell itself the answer. At the end of the poem the narrator appears angry with his neighbor, he is seeing his neighbor there clutching the stones firmly to the top of the wall in an attempt to fix it and the narrator realizes that by his neighbor’s attitude he will not follow the his father’s advice, he will not listen to the wisdom of the ancients and will continue to build the division between two people, making it difficult for them to reach and approach them, and will keep repeating. “Good fences make good neighbors,”

Establishing a wall to make their neighbors something good. The poem has as its central theme the purpose that humans have and the value they establish in the construction and segregation of walls, barriers in their lives, also brings two seemingly conflicting ideas present in. “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall” and “good fences make good neighbors” means that there is something you don’t like about the wall, which may still be your neighbor, but then your neighbor’s talk. “Good fences make good neighbors’ reveals that it was good having built this wall because it made his neighbor a good person, the isolation between them made him see that he was good, because if they came together they would see the flaws and the differences and would not find the qualities and would not be a good person, so that wall is needed.

The poem, when speaking of walls, establishes a very clear metaphor, as it refers to the various divisions established by human beings in the world. It shows real and metaphorical walls, representing, for example, as metaphorical walls the social differences that are established in society by men generating discrimination against people of low income and lower classes, the most common forms of social differences are with race, sex, economic power and religion. We also have prejudice, which is an attitude or idea formed in advance and without any reasonable foundation, it is an unfavorable judgment in relation to various social objects, which may be people, cultures, so there is a division between one person and another due to false judgments. Another example of metaphorical wall is revealed in territorial divisions, we have the wall between Israel and the West Bank, where the Israelites allude that this wall brings them security and coexistence among their own race, without taking into account the integrity of the Palestinians, which in some Villages like Bardalla, as if to mend some, in the north of the Jordan Valley, where soldiers have not only collapsed houses to move the wall but to cut off the water supply without imagining that the most affected by the lack of water are the children.

In conclusion, the poem does not opt for any option, but irony does show us the lack of dialogue of the unsupportive society in which we live. The insistence on the walls makes us cavemen and goes back to the Stone Age. The president of the US wants a wall to be built on the border of Mexico. Rather, he wants to continue the construction of the wall that Bill Clinton ordered to be built in 1994 and that with presidents Bush and Obama was lengthening a little, without thinking about the impact on the wildlife of those areas. Robert Frost could not conceive the construction of walls between neighbors, given his high sense of morality and love towards others.

Works cited

  1. Frost, Robert. “Mending Wall by Robert Frost.” Poetry Foundation, Poetry Foundation, https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44266/mending-wall.
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Frost’s Views on Society in Mending Wall

May 5, 2021 by Essay Writer

When it comes to poetry, it is not often that it it is studied without reflecting on the famous poet Robert Frost. Robert Frost was a troubled man with an intricate pathway in life that followed to an unexpected path to success. His life was translated into his poetry, always being consistent to his roots and his rural lifestyle. “If popularity could be regarded as the measure of a poet’s eminence, Frost would certainly be among the most eminent poets of the English language” (Chelliah, 99). Robert Frost’s opinion of society within his poem the “Mending Wall” is conflicted but we are able to see that he considers both his opinion but also the opinion of his neighbor. Society is either thrusting to be separate or parts of it are allowing the possibility for change. The hesitation could be the result of fear and Frost explores this possibility throughout “Mending Wall.” Throughout the poem, Frost’s use of literary devices such as metaphors, symbolism, and imagery allows us to see that the narrator is struggling with his own beliefs and accepting the beliefs of his neighbor. But also his neighbor’s stubbornness and ignorance to the facts around him.

Frost starts his poem the “Mending Wall” with a line that has more meaning behind it than the words written. “Something there is that doesn’t love a wall” (Frost) which is then repeated later on for a second time. This is not the only time Frost does this throughout the poem. He also repeats “Good fences make good neighbors” (Frost) and then ends the poem with this line. The repetition of these two lines was a calculated move made by Frost. There is an importance to why Frost chose to do so. This plan of action enabled these lines to be engrained into the audience’s mind. Frost was allowing people to envision that he was attempting to stay unbiased about his relationship with he way society should function. That in truth he was not certain whether he believed society should work as a community or as separate unities within a community. In actuality though, Frost considered that we should coexist cohesively together. “The poem’s voice, belonging to a narrator who is in character, is open and relaxed, yet inward and musing; it welcomes the reader, at the same time enticing him into a riddle which becomes essential to the poem’s meaning” (McNair). This riddle becomes the reader’s riddle making us question whether or not the wall is really a necessity in our lives and our society. The narrator is considering this struggles among himself and whether or not his own views match that of his neighbor.

Even though the above lines describe both opinions in the argument of whether or not we should be divided from our neighbor or peacefully coexist and whether or not Frost justified these views, there were other parts of “Mending Wall” that shadowed Frost’s feelings on the topic. He turned it into almost a comical topic when he personified trees and their abilities to move.

“There where it is we do not need the wall:

He is all pine and I am apple orchard.

My apple trees will never get across

And eat the cones under his pines, I tell him” (Frost).

We can see here the imagery Frost uses alongside personification and quite frankly symbolism as well. The way Frost used imagery, although simplistic, allowed us to imagine an apple tree wobbling over to the pine tree and snack on his pine cones without permission. This is how much the narrator finds this wall that he is building, absolutely absurd. The wall is not something that is necessary to their survival as farmers, yet it is a symbol of the stubbornness his neighbor holds. “The poems about nature by Frost make a delightful reading on account of their skillful handling of the poetic devices like images and personifications. Personification is generally employed to add vitality to descriptions of nature. The personifications of the Romantic take the form of brief metaphor, while Frost’s are nearly always extended analogies” (Chelliah, 110) Their crops, pine trees and apple trees, are far enough apart that there would be no possible way that either would cross over the others land, unless they grew legs and wondered over. Frost is implying that his neighbor’s ignorance to that fact, is what is forcing them to perform this menial chore. It could also be that his neighbor is so stuck in his ways that, even considering this logical point about their crops, doesn’t stop him from building the wall. The same can be said about the narrator though, even though he understands the absurdity that is accompanied with building the wall he does not stop either. The uncertainty of the narrator is based off of his own fear of the unknown, that in fact it is a possibility that “Good fences make good neighbors”( Frost).

After awhile Frost’s “Mending Wall” takes on a more serious tone. He goes from a lighthearted man joking about walking, thieving trees to a more serious man evaluating the man beside him. The narrator can sense the importance of the task at hand just by analyzing the man before him.

“I see him there

Bringing a stone grasped firmly by the top

In each hand, like an old-stone savage armed.

He moves in darkness as it seems to me,

Not of woods only and the shade of trees”(Frost).

This passage is what changes the tone of the poem. Frost’s use of imagery here allows us to see the seriousness of this old man doing back breaking work. It brings a change to the narrators thoughts.“Eventually the narrator’s speculation about what might not love a wall turns to a description of the difficulty of wall-mending and into a questioning of why he and his neighbor have met to carry out the task in the first place. His range of tone as he does so moves from seriousness to whimsy to be-musement to cajolery. As is usual in Frost, that movement is heightened by a tension between spoken English and formal meter” (McNair). The change in his tone changes the meaning to this poem. We can evaluate how the narrator considers how the building of the wall affects his life. He considers it to be just a chore but as he looks onto his neighbor he considers the meaning the wall has to his neighbor. Here’s this old man doing back breaking work because he believes in the wall and the meaning behind the wall.

The wall described in the “Mending Wall” is a symbol among the characters within the poem but also the readers of the poem. “Many critics of Robert Frost’s Mending Wall” have seen the poem as a symbolic statement about barriers men create between themselves. For them the wall is a visual icon for these barriers” (Morissey,58). The wall allows the to lessen their fear about what is beyond their home. The wall is their security from what lies beyond in the world and a security of the fear they hold for the unknown. The wall is Frost’s way of expressing how people want to remain separate from their neighbor. Every year they meet to build this symbol of a wall. Frost knew that simple objects like walls often allow a person to feel comfortable even if the wall doesn’t actually protect anything in the physical world but rather protects their subconscious. Robert Frosts perfectly executed use of imagery, personification and symbolism illustrates how the world functions together as a society.

Works Cited

  • Chelliah, S. “The Poetic Art and Vision of Robert Frost with a Focus on His Pragmatic View of the Relationship between Man and Nature: A Brief Analysis.” Language in India, vol. 17, no. 11, Nov. 2017, pp. 98–112. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ufh&AN=126488938&site=eds-live&scope=site.
  • McNair, Wesley. “Robert Frost and Dramatic Speech.” Sewanee Review, vol. 106, no. 1, Winter 1998, p. 68. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=prf&AN=541482&site=prclive&scope=site.
  • Morrissey, L. J. “‘Mending Wall’: The Structure of Gossip.” English Language Notes, vol. 25, no. 3, Mar. 1988, p. 58. EBSCOhost, search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=hlh&AN=4971124&site=eds-live&scope=site.
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