On a recent walk, huffing and puffing my way uphill and down, I found myself noticing fences and walls and the frequent lack thereof.
If you haven’t read Robert Frost’s poem, Mending Wall, since high school or middle school, you may have forgotten that it wasn’t Frost who declared that, “Good fences make good neighbors.” His neighbor was the one who said it.
The wall between Frost’s property and his neighbor’s was built of boulders. In the spring the two men got together and replaced the bounders that fell down during the fall and winter.
But Frost, feeling mischievous, decided to challenge his neighbor’s belief in the need for a wall. His apple trees weren’t about to cross over and eat the pine cones on the neighbor’s pine trees. And neither of them had cows.
“Something there is that doesn’t love a wall,” he says in the poem.
And his neighbor repeated the saying he learned from his father: “Good fences make good neighbors.”
On my walk, the only rock walls I saw were for terracing a hillside.
The house above has a small decorative fence.
This fence provides privacy between houses that are built close together.
Some homeowners build fences around their back yards.
But probably the majority of the houses I walked past were wide open in the front.
One house was different from all the rest, though. It’s hidden on all sides behind a twenty-foot-high hedge. There must be an entrance or a place to peek in and see the house, but I haven’t found it. Perhaps the homeowner learned from his father that, “Good fences make good neighbors.”
Are you a fan of fences and walls?