March 13, 2011
The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost
Robert Frost, who was born in 1874 and died in 1963, suffered many losses and illnesses throughout his life. The fact that he was still able to write such inspirational poems despite his depression and the deaths of all his children but two, and also the death of his wife is remarkable. Of the two children that outlived him, one was committed to a mental hospital in 1947. Even his sister suffered from a mental illness and after being submitted to a mental hospital passed away. In spite of all these tragedies Frost continued to find an escape in his writing. His poems and stories are continuously read and passed down and provide inspiration, insight, and colorful images to everyone who reads them. The Road Not Taken portrays perhaps many points in his life where he had to make important decisions that would lead him in specific directions. He knew we all made these choices, and even today there are actions that we take that decide the rest of our lives.
In this poem, the narrator, who may or may not be Frost, describes to the audience his decision to take the less traveled of two roads that he came across while walking through the woods at some unknown point in time. He portrays himself as a ‘traveler’, giving the idea that he was going from one place to another without ever turning back and having the opportunity to traverse the other road. In a future time, he claims that he will tell this same story to others and explain, ‘with a sigh’, that he never had the opportunity to explore the other option. However, he does not suggest that it was either the right or wrong decision. He simply states that the decision he did make at the time, made a difference in the way the rest of his journey played out. The audience is never provided with a description of the narrator, nor are we given any details about the exact place he was and when he was there. The poem is extremely...