The Road Not Taken

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The process of making decisions is not always clear and with decision comes consequence and possible regret of what could have been. In “The Road Not Taken”, by Robert Frost, the reader is left feeling the writers’ dilemma of choice. Making the right choice sometimes is not easy and the end result is not always what we hoped for. Both of the choices or “roads”, in this case, were seemingly filled with new beginnings and hope for the future. The traveler expresses that he will keep the other path for another day. This is evidenced in the fourth stanza, line 1, “I shall be telling this with a sigh”, and the writer leads the reader to believe that he in later years had some regret of the unknown and what could have been if he had taken the other road as told in stanza 4, line 2-3, “Somewhere ages and ages hence: Two roads diverged in a wood, and I…. I took the one less traveled by”. The simplicity of the writing makes it easy to read but has an obviously deeper meaning; as it relates to life’s more complicated choices and the consequences of those choices, positive or negative. The poem is written as a lyrical poem, with four stanzas of five lines each. The setting is described in line 1 of stanza 1, as, “yellow wood” and in line 2 of stanza 3, “In leaves no step had trodden black”. These inferences display a mental visual of Fall; the leaves, turning yellow and falling to the ground. The theme is presented in various ways. Firstly, we can see and feel conflict throughout the poem. The conflict of choice and the permanency placed on the decisions we make. The conflict of regret, since we can’t remove or retract what has already been done. Secondly, confidence and commitment is permeating in the travelers’ choice of roads since it does not appear that the speaker has second thoughts about his final decision but did take time in forming the ultimate decision of which road to take.

In the first stanza the traveler comes upon two roads; both of the roads...
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