PLEASE Stop Misinterpreting "The Road Not Taken"! - …

This poem is often confused as focusing on how the narrator takes the road less traveled, when it is actually meant to focus on the choice that the narrator denies, or the road not taken.

The Road Not Taken, A Noiseless Patient Spider and The ..


(as in "The Road Not Taken") ..

In emphasizing the lyric's form Frost really only defers the question of theme orcontent. It is not that the poem does not have a theme, or one worth a reader'sconsideration; the form simply the theme. If this seems surprising, it is onlybecause Frost's emphasis makes for so complete a reversal in mood. The mood of the poem atthis second level of form-as-theme is anything but suggestive of self-annihilation:"I was riding too high to care what trouble I incurred." This is the kind oftransformation Poirier has in mind when he remarks in (1971),quoting an interview with Frost originally published in the in 1960:"If [a] poem expresses grief, it also expresses—as an as acomposition, a performance, a 'making,'—the opposite of grief; it shows or expresses'what a of a good time I had writing it'" (892). I would point outfurther that Frost's reading, appearing as it does in "The Constant Symbol,"lends the last two lines of "Stopping by Woods" added resonance:"promises" are still the concern, though in "The Constant Symbol" hespeaks of them as "commitments" to poetic form. Viewed in these terms"Stopping by Woods" dramatizes the artist's negotiation of the responsibilitiesof his craft. What may seem to most readers hardly a metapoetical lyric actually speaks tothe central concern of the poet a poet when the form of the poem is taken as itstheme.

In addition it is reminiscent of "The Road Not Taken."

Discussion of this poem has usually concerned itself with matters of"content" or meaning (What do the woods represent? Is this a poem in whichsuicide is contemplated?). Frost, accordingly, as he continued to read it in public madefun of efforts to draw out or fix its meaning as something large and impressive, somethingto do with man's existential loneliness or other ultimate matters. Perhaps because ofthese efforts, and on at least one occasion--his last appearance in 1962 at the Ford Forumin Boston--he told his audience that the thing which had given him most pleasure incomposing the poem was the effortless sound of that couplet about the horse and what itdoes when stopped by the woods: "He gives his harness bells a shake / To ask if thereis some mistake." We might guess that he held these lines up for admiration becausethey are probably the hardest ones in the poem out of which to make anything significant:regular in their iambic rhythm and suggesting nothing more than they assert, theyestablish a sound against which the "other sound" of the following lines can, bycontrast, make itself heard. Frost's fondness for this couplet suggests that however muchhe cared about the "larger" issues or questions which "Stopping By Woods .. ." raises and provokes, he wanted to direct his readers away from solemnly debatingthem; instead he invited them simply to be pleased with how he had put it. He was to saylater on about Edwin Arlington Robinson something which could more naturally have beensaid about himself--that his life as a poet was "a revel in the felicities oflanguage." "Stopping By Woods . . ." can be appreciated only by removing itfrom its pedestal and noting how it is a miniature revel in such felicities.

Like "The Road Not Taken," it suggests vast thematic implications through alucid narrative. . . .
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The Road Not Taken -- A Scriptural Journey - Bible …

Throughout the poem—brief in actual time, but with the deceptive length ofdream—we are being drawn into silence and sleep, yet always with the slightestcontrary pull of having to go on. The very tentative tone of the opening line lets us intothe mood without our quite sensing where it will lead, just as the ordinariness of'though' at the end of the second line assures us that we are in this world. But byrepeating the ‘o’ sound, 'though' also starts the series of rhymes that willsoon get the better of traveler and reader. The impression of aloneness in the first twolines prepares for concentration on seeing the strange process not of snow falling, but ofwoods 'filling up.' The intimacy of

Aug 09, 2009 · The Road Not Taken - Robert Frost , whats the language commentary

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Having paid tribute to the dangerous seductiveness of the woods, the narrator seems tobe trying to shake himself back into commonsense reality by invoking his 'promises' ormundane responsibilities. The last line is repeated, however; and while at first it seemslittle more than a literal reference to the journey he has to complete (and so a way oftelling himself to continue on down the road), the repetition gives it particularresonance. This could, after all, be a metaphorical reference to the brief span of humanlife and the compulsion this puts the narrator under to take risks and explore the truthwhile he can. Only a few 'miles' to go before 'I sleep' in death: such a chilling perhaps justifies stopping by the woods in the first place and considering thespiritual quest implicit in the vision they offer. Perhaps: the point is that neithernarrator nor reader can be sure. 'The poem is the act of having the thought', Frostinsisted; it is process rather than product, it invites us to share in the experiences ofseeing, feeling, and thinking, not simply to look at their results. So the most a piecelike 'Stopping by Woods' will offer - and it is a great deal - is an resolution of its tensions: the sense that its conflicts and irresolutions have been givenappropriate dramatic expression, revelation and equipoise.

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After taking this road he relaxes that both paths are actually "worn almost the same,indicating that an equal number of people have actually taken both paths, and he is not the first to go this way.