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The Road Not Taken Essay

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The Road Not Taken Essay Sample

A Literary Analysis of Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken”
The Road not Taken if one of the most popular poems of Robert Frost. The poem describes a person, who chooses between two roads and reflects about his choice later. In the first stanza of the poem the person walks in the woods and comes to the place where two roads go to two different sides. The traveller is full of doubts since he does not want to miss the opportunity and wants to choose the right road. He spends time looking for both roads and thinking about the right choice.

The road in this poem becomes a symbol of life, change and transformation. That is the reason the choice becomes so important for the traveller. He thinks not only about the right way to choose in the forest but also about the right path in life. That is the reason we can feel the switch of the mood by the end of the poem. When the traveller realizes that he will not be able to take another road, left by in the past, he regrets it as lost opportunity. He is disappointed because of the opportunity he missed. He states: “I kept the first for another day!”(Frost) We can hear regret in his tone. Now he realizes that his choice was final and looking at the road he did not choose, he “doubted if I should ever come back” (Frost). By the end of his journey the traveler realizes that each decision we take influences all our further life and this decision can not be changed. Decisions we take can not be cancelled and each moment of our life we make choices, which determine our life. By the end of the poem the traveller realizes this truth and that is the reason we can hear a shade of regret in his worlds. We can see that he regrets about the lost opportunity. “I took the road less traveled by and that had made all the difference,” – he states with regret.

The Road Not Taken consists of four quatrains. The most of the lines consist of nine syllables. In the first stanza we meet the traveller for the first time and get an idea about the choice he has to make. The next two stanzas we can see different arguments, which help him to make a choice. In the last stanza, which starts from the new sentence we see that the traveller has to meet the results of his choices. The arrangement of stanzas helps the author to pass his main idea to his readers. Rich imaginary is another way the author appeals to his readers. The landscape helps the readers to see same picture as traveller does and make the same choices. When describing the roads, Frost also uses such artistic means as assonance and dissonance. For example, while describing the road, he uses assonance in order to create a lively picture.

In the lines “ages hence”, “And having perhaps”, and “looked down one” the repetition of vowels helps the author to create a necessary effect. In the first stanza there is a repetition of vowel “o”, which makes the poem sound like a song. Consonance supplements the effect created by consonance, in such lines as “equally lay in leaves” and “Though as for that the passing there” we can see repetitions of consonants.

The poem has deeper meaning than a regret about the chances we loose in our life. This poem is a an example when the author and the character of his poem give different messages to the readers. Like mentioned above, the traveler regrets the road not taken. What is notable, he is not unsatisfied with the life he has now but still regrets about the road he never took thinking that it might have done him happier. When we see the situation from his perspective, we can interpret the title of the poem as reminder about the opportunities we loose in our lives. The author gives his own interpretation of the same situation. He does not see the road taken as a lost chance. He points out that this choice determined the traveler’s life, but did not make him unhappy. Frost wants his readers to realize that our choices are unique and there is no need to regret about them, since these things can not be changed.

When making a choice or choosing a road, a person should realize that this choice is final and he will not have an opportunity to change it in the future. There is nothing bad about this and this is the main message the author wanted to pass to his readers, to my mind. The poem can not have one single interpretation and different people can get different message fro the poem. This makes it a unique work of art and proves a bright talent of the author.

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