After Apple Picking By Robert Frost

998 words - 4 pages

There are so many variables it is hard to pinpoint exactly what motivated Frost to recall this harvest of apples. Is it day time or is it night? It could be night since Frost says, "I'm drowsing off". The poem tries to give you the impression of early morning hours but that is deceiving. Since Frost speaks in the past tense when talking about the "pane of glass", he "skimmed this morning from the drinking trough". Frost speaks of a long, hard day picking apples. As he lies down to sleep, he can still smell the apples he has picked all day "The scent of apples: I am drowsing off". Even after a nights sleep he still feels tired and hazy. He calls the ice that frozen over the water "a pane of glass." Frost wonders if he is still dreaming or not. He has been looking forward to the harvest yet at the same time it is such a large task it made him tired of picking apples "of apple-picking: I am overtired". One could take this poem literally or look for a deeper meaning within the words. Perhaps, what Frost is telling us that if we have a desire we long for with our hearts that the reality of it may not be exactly what we thought it should be. Just as the apple harvest was desired at first, but when the reality of how much work it really took to accomplish he quickly becomes tired of the job. Frost points out that although there were "ten thousand thousand fruit to touch" each fruit was precious until it struck the ground. After that, it was good for nothing more than to go to the cider heap. Frost is the one doing all the talking in this poem. The purpose is to remind the readers of the fact that even the most mundane events of our lives have a place in our memory. Apple picking may not be a major event to draw a memory from however; it is still an occurrence worth recalling. This poem appears to takes place in the early morning hours of the day. However, it is more likely night and the illusion of morning is just another memory recalled by Frost. And, the time of year is winter since the drinking trough has a pane of ice over it when Frost goes to get a drink of water. As important as the act of picking the apples is, so is the act of sleep. Sleep is mentioned throughout the lines of the poem. It is compared to "winter sleep", and immediately following that, the speaker talks of "drowsing off." Next, sleep and dreaming are closely linked in lines 15 and 17. Lastly, "This sleep of mine" and "long sleep" could be referring to death as "human sleep". Perhaps he was drawing to the fact that a human's final sleep is death, since this is the...

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