Worksheet #2: Diction, Tone and Image 1. Paraphrase the opening four lines of Robert Frost's "Mending Wall" (795) two times: once to state its message as simply as possible, and the second time to include as much of Frost's speaker's meaning as you can. 2. Compare your paraphrases to Frost's lines, paying attention to syntax (the grammar of the sentence), lineation (the way in which his sentence is arranged into poetic lines) and diction (word choice). What are the main differences between your paraphrases and Frost's lines? What do these differences tell you about "Mending Wall"? 3. Now rewrite this opening sentence in an entirely different voice (either as poetic lines, or as paraphrase). Identify the speaker of your sentence: what is his/her relation to the scene Frost describes? 4. Find the lines in Frost's poem that are in quotes, and list them by line-number. Identify the speaker for each of these instances of quoted speech, and describe the tone of voice the lines might be spoken in. 5. Frost's poem shifts tone in the last 5 lines, leading up to the re-iterated phrase "Good fences make good neighbors." How would you describe the tone of these lines, and the speaker's attitude towards his neighbor? How has the concluding slogan changed meaning since the first time you heard it?
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