The poem "The Road Not Taken" by Robert Frost addresses the idea of decision-making and choosing what direction life will take you. The poem is about the speaker arriving at a fork in the road, where both paths are carpeted with leaves. The persona, who is believed to be Frost himself, chooses to take the road less traveled by. He tells himself that he will take the other road another day, although he knows it is unlikely that he will have the opportunity to do so. The poem concludes with the speaker satisfied by his choice in taking the road less traveled by.
The poem consists of four stanzas, each containing five lines. The rhyme rigid scheme is ABAAB. Then, in the last line the rhyme is broken with the word "difference" making the ending stand out from the rest of the poem. Each line contains four stressed syllables. Frost uses a metaphor comparing the road to life, and the fork to making decisions. The first stanza conveys a mood of change and introduces the idea of a life altering decision, which is the basis for the poem. First Frost sets the scene with his opening words, "Two roads diverged
" (line 1). The speaker is standing at a junction in the road pondering two choices. The roads in the poem are merged where the speaker is standing but lead in two different directions signifying two different paths in life. Frost begins with the metaphorical meaning as early as the first line with his reference to "
yellow wood" (line 1). This suggests that the setting is in the forest during Fall, which is the season of change. The second line, "
sorry I could not have traveled both" (line 2) expresses the curiosity to explore several possibilities in life. It also forms a sense of regret at not knowing what could lie ahead on the un-chosen path and the speaker's limitation to one lifetime. When Frost says, "And be one traveler
" (line 3) it is obvious that speaker can not travel down both paths. He realizes that he needs to make a choice and pick...
Cited: Frost, Robert. "The Road Not Taken." Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, and Drama, Second Compact Edition. Ed. X. J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia, New York: Addision Wesley Longman, 2000. 26-33
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