"The Road Not Taken"
By Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Life is full of choices, and everybody has to make difficult dicisions throughout their lifetimes. Robert Frost uses an extended metaphor to illustrate the choices we make. The split path in the woods resembles an instance when we are stuck and have to choose between one thing over another, like watching TV vs. doing homework or doing drugs vs. exercising. Frost says, "I took the one less traveled by, / And that has made all the difference." He explains that we constantly make decioins, and each choice we make shapes the next part of our life.
I think the title of the poem is makes it very interesting. Even though the fork in the road serves to the overall meaning of the poem, I think the title adds an additional dimension to our decision-making. Instead of naming the poem by the road the speaker takes, Frost names the poem after the road that the speaker avoids. Later on in life, the speaker may ask what may have happened if he took the other road. It is a common thought process that we all experience. We sometimes look back at either a good or regretful action and ask ourselves what might have happened if we did something else instead.
"The Road Not Taken" is an extended metaphor for the different choices we make throughout life. The metaphor of the split road shows how we choose one option over another. Although the metaphor contributes to an overall meaning to the poem, the title itself creates a second part to the meaning, representing the regret of making certain decisions. What other interesting elements does Frost use to add to the poem?