Analytical Essay "Fire And Ice" By Robert Frost

1110 words - 4 pages

Dickson LauFire and Ice- Robert FrostIn his poem Fire and IceRobert Frost compares and contrasts the two destructive forces: fire and ice. Frost presents the reader two options for the end of the world, either in hot fire or in icy cold. Although Frost chooses fire for the end of the world, he gives a fair comparison that ice could be the victor of the world's destruction.The theme presents itself with Frost taking the position of fire. Frosts describes his view toward fire in the third and fourth lines when he says, "From what I've tasted of desire/ I hold with those who favor fire." This comparison suggests that Frost sees desire as an emotion that can consume and destroy, much like fire. Fire can spread easily and is contagious- nearly anything it touches turns into flames. Fire is full of energy and passion, like feelings. Desire can lead to greed which ultimately turns to jealousy. Jealousy is hot and uncontrollable sometimes, but it is natural for humans to feel jealous. This can easily be seen in innocent young children. When one little boy has a new shiny toy, all the other little boys want that same new shiny toy too. However, jealousy is only a form of selfishness. Thus, Frost implies that selfishness will one day consume the world like a great big fire. However, there is another side on how the world will end, which Frost masks as ice. Frost compares ice to the feeling hate as he shows in line six, "I think I know enough of hate". This comparison shows that the view of hate causes people to be rigid, unmoving, and cruel. Very much in contrast to fire, ice has no passion. Even the element itself causes everything around it to shrink and wither away. In blizzards, ice is unforgiving as it blinds everything with harsh and brutal winds. Destroying everything by taking the life out of it, ice is truly the opposite of fire. Frost illustrates that ice is much like ignorance. The reverse idea of desire is ignorance, or the lack of interest in things. People may not be selfish, but they probably could care less about the problems of other people. This is another downside of human nature. People only help other people if there is a reward involved. The last line of Frost's poem asserts that the two destructive forces are equally great. From the views Frost states, the destruction of the world will either end in selfishness or ignorance. Perhaps the world will end in a violent wrath, or it could end with people becoming too rigid, unyielding and cold, deserting one another. This is why Frost feels fire is more likely than ice because when he turns the poem around by saying "But if it had to perish twice" he describes that ice is much more harsh and unlikely that the world will end that way.The perspective of this poem is very humane. Frost poses a simple question of how the world will end can show an individual's personality. Should he say fire, then it signifies that he is a passionate person, and his downside is his desires. On the other hand,...

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