ENGL 102: Literature and Composition
Fall B 2013
Jane S. Ciucevich ID# L25513950
Writing Style Used APA
September 15, 2013
Professor Mary Dixon
A. Frost has presented a literal and metaphoric fork in the road to a traveler. He must choose between the two roads all the while knowing that by choosing one he must forgo the other. B. “The Road Not Taken” is all about choices. The road the traveler is walking on has split. He must decide which direction to take. This road is not just a path in the woods, but a metaphoric path in his life. He is being forced to make a choice. This traveler realizes that he must choose and struggles with his decision a little. He indicates remorse that he cannot take both roads; one now and one later. He knows that he will not be able to go back and ‘relive’ the time he spends on the first road. His sigh in the first line of the fourth stanza indicates possible remorse of his choice in the present and possibly even the future. 1. Robert Frost – “The Road Not Taken”
2. Diverged is another word for split.
C. The main points are Theme (choice), and how Frost uses imagery (color, grassy, morning) to set the scene. D. Thesis—Robert Frost’s poem, “The Road Not Taken”, is all about choices and the possible implications of the choices made throughout a lifetime. Frost brings the reader into nature using imagery in this poem. He focuses on a fork in the road in the woods in autumn. Nature in this poem could hold a metaphorical meaning. The title itself compels the reader to wonder if there is some regret in the choice the speaker made in the road/path he decided to travel, or in just having had to choose at all. II) BODY
A. The theme of this poem is choices.
1. Throughout one’s life choices must be made. The reader watches with wonder as the traveler makes his choice and justifies his decision. 2. He wants to go down both roads at the same time metaphorically, but he realizes the impossibility. He also knows that by choosing only one path he must forego the experience of the other. He expresses regret that he must choose. In his “The Road Not Taken”, Frost makes this quite clear to the reader: “And sorry I could not travel both/And be one traveler, long I stood” (2-3). This is where the reader begins to see the metamorphic meaning in this poem. In stanza three the author tells the reader it is morning on this day. This could also indicate a new beginning. It’s as if the traveler is making a decision about his future, perhaps a career change: “And looked down one as far as I could/To where it bent in the undergrowth” (Frost, Road, 4-5). This is an example of his use of imagery and metaphor. Obviously one cannot see into the future. He must make a choice. 3. Frost leaves the reader to wonder if there is regret in the choice the traveler made that morning: “Yet knowing how way leads on to way,/I doubted if I should ever come back./I shall be telling this with a sigh” (Road, 14-16). The traveler knows that he will not be able to relive the moment of making this choice, nor will he have time to go back and walk the other road. The reason may be that it is possibly late in life for him; metaphorically, fall could be interpreted as late in life. It is also possible that he does not regret the decision he made, but in having to make the decision itself. 4. So we have a traveler presented with a choice of two roads, or two paths in life. He makes his decision and shows a small amount of regret; quite possibly not in the choice he made, but in having to choose between the two. He wanted both. Choices must be made in life, one cannot have it all. B. Imagery. Frost uses imagery in each stanza of this poem to help set the scene as well as push the reader to look deeper into the metaphorical meaning. 1. Stanza one. “The Road Not Taken” was written in a time where roads were not paved or concrete surfaces running through a metropolitan city....
References: Frost, Robert “The Road Not Taken.” Literature: An Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, Drama, and
Writing. Kennedy, X.J.; Gioia, D. 7th ed. Boston: Pearson, 2013. 689. Print.
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