The poem, “To a Mouse” by Robert Burns, is the basis for John Steinbeck’s title of his novel, Of Mice and Men. The allusion to Robert Burns’s poem relates to Steinbeck’s story because it is about how mice are like men all of their effort is used into acquiring the smallest piece of food, trying to stay warm in the coldest months and trying to survive. This ties into the novel because throughout the story George and Lennie are trying to survive. They are trying to get to that dream where they have security and warmth and food they do not have to pay for. Of Mice and Men gets its name from the poem "To a Mouse". The poem says "the best laid schemes o' mice and men gang aft a glay" which means that the best planned out plans often go wrong. This links to the novel as many characters have the American Dream. None of these come true. George and Lennie have a dream to own a ranch. This goes wrong when Lennie accidently kills Curley’s wife which leads to Lennie’s downfall. The poem speaks about how the best laid plans are often destroyed. In the book Lennie and George have this plan to save up for a small house where they can farm themselves and Lennie can have all the animals he wants. This plan gets destroyed when Lenny kills the mistress. The last stanza also talks about looking back on regrets and not knowing what will happen in the future.
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