Obscure Biblical Allusions in Robert Frost’s “Mending Wall”

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Joy Kuttappan
Gauri Joy


Allusions are implied or indirect references that give writing aesthetic value. Robert Frost used allusions in his poems, but his Biblical allusions in the poem, “Mending Wall”, have not yet been studied in detail. Perhaps the reason is that they are obscure rather than overtly present in the poem.  The purpose of the study was to analyze this poem’s obscure Biblical allusions through literary research. Numerous obscure Biblical allusions were discovered, including the poem’s title “Mending Wall”, which alluded to God’s salvation as a mending process. “He is all pine” alludes to wood used to make the cross for the Crucifixion of Christ; “apple orchard” refers to the Garden of Eden; “good neighbor” to Jesus’ command to love one’s neighbor in the parable of the “Good Samaritan;” “loaves” to the miracle of loaves and fishes; and “Bringing a stone … In each hand” denotes the tablets of the Ten Commandments carried by Moses. Thus, all these references used in Frost’s poem have Biblical affiliations and represent the obscure Biblical allusions hidden in this poem.

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