After Apple Picking

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Essay Database > Literature > English
Set in the evening of a late autumn day at the end of harvest time, Robert Frost’s “After Apple-Picking” can be interpreted in two ways. The first is that the poem is an insight into Frost’s thoughts on the triviality of life, especially his own. The second is that it is a metaphor for the Bible story of Adam and Eve. Whatever the interpretation, there is a tension between feelings of regret and …

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…Eve’s fall from grace. Their banishment from the Garden is depicted in lines 35 and 36 in the apples that “Went surely to the cider-apple heap/As of no worth.” Frost never reaches a conclusion nor does he resolve the tension. As he progresses through the poem, Frost keeps linking one feeling of tension to a new one, until the reader is left, having climbed to the top of a ladder of tension and gone nowhere.