Tag Archive for Edward Thomas


Subversive Poetry

frost 1913 x

Robert Frost, 1913

Many poems of Robert Frost (1874-1963) are remembered for something completely different from what the poet actually wrote. Frost’s meaning is often either opposite or orthogonal to what is initially understood.

One of Frost’s early poems is Wall Mending, published in 1914 as the first poem in North of Boston. Many remember the poem as claiming that “Good fences make good neighbors.” Walls serve to keep livestock away from crops. However, Frost points out to his neighbor that there is no need of the particular wall that they are mending:

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.

Read more