All Revelation: by Robert Frost - Summary & Analysis

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All Revelation

A head thrusts in as for the view,
But where it is it thrusts in from,
Or what It is it thrusts into,
By that Cyb’laean avenue,

And what can of its coming come,
And whither it will be withdrawn,
And what take hence or leave behind,
These things the mind has pondered on
A moment and still asking gone.

Strange apparition of the mind!
But the impervious geode
Was entered, and its inner crust
Of crystals with a ray cathode
At every point and facet glowed

In answer to the mental thrust.
Eyes seeking the response of eyes
Bring out the stars, bring out the :Bowers,
Thus concentrating earth and skies
So none need be afraid of size.

All revelation has been ours.

A head thrusts in as for the view, But where it is it thrusts in from, Or what It is it thrusts into, By that Cyb’laean avenue,
All Revelation

Summary and Analysis


      All Revelation is a poem from A Witness Tree. It may be called a metaphysical lyric, a symbolic poem which focusses on "the impervious geode". Gigantic mystical geode in a quartz cave is the astonishment of narrator in the poem.


      The metaphor compresses the incident and the situation into a single moment. It is an implied narrative of a prospector whose searches take him underground to a crystal cave where he looks into the Hashing mystery of a huge geode. The poet wonders what the prospector thought of the strange sight. He concludes that it is wise to be self-dependent and exploratory to reach a valid appraisal. The mind or probing thought can discover the nature of things, though the discovery depends on the nature of the mind. Thus the mind is like the cathode ray which can enter the apparently impenetrable dark cave-like geode, and makes us see the luminous crystals in all their form and colour. All the revelation we have got is through the mental thrust which brings out the order in the unknown. On the surface, the earth-like the geode gives no hint of the beautiful inner reality.

Critical Analysis:

      The poem is an indirect commentary on those persons who rely too much on the false kind of sales-talk indulged in by high-pressure salesmen. A highly symbolic poem, it seems to be Frost's powerful answer to the question on mind and reality. It suggests "the capacity of the mind to co-operate with the active universe to contribute something of its own to it in perceiving it, and not, as sensationalists taught, merely to receive, passively, impressions from without. And the sense of a real continuity between the world of human emotion and the world of stars and flowers is clear".

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