How does Robert Frost create contrasting attitudes in this poem?
In “ Mending Wall” Robert Frost and the neighbor have contrasting attitudes about barriers that separate people. Frost starts out by trying to find reasons why the stacked stone wall has fallen. He explains that maybe nature knocked the wall down. In the freezing weather the ground bulges and knocks the walls over. Sometimes hunters move the wall to scare “the rabbit out of hiding.” The narrator says no one sees them fall or knows why they fall, but come spring walls have breaks.
The different in attitude between the narrator and neighbor can be seen right away Frost goes over to his neighbor and tells him the wall was knocked over, so they meet by the wall to start rebuilding it. Frost’s sense of humor starts to take over. He tells his neighbor he couldn’t imagine that the trees will stand up and walk over to raid each other‘s territory. The narrator thinks “we do not need the wall” because the trees will never touch. So, the narrator thinks this job is ridiculous. The neighbor responds with an insensitive thought, he says “good fences make good neighbors.” The neighbor really likes boundaries, but he hasn’t caught on to the humor of Frost’s walking trees.
The narrator is finally outside after winter and he wants to have fun with his neighbor. Frost wants to “put a notion in his head,” so he asks where are the cows? But “here there are no cows.” The narrator believes there should be no fence if there is no need for it. He would want to know who he is offending if he did or did not put the fence up. Frost has not changed his mind on barriers, he now repeats the line the poem starts with,(“Something . . . doesn’t love a wall”). His sense of humor has not left. Joking, he wonders if his neighbor could agree that elves destroyed the wall.
Frost stops work, looks at his neighbor, then uses a simile to describe the neighbor as “ an old-stone savage armed.” To the narrator