Metaphors, Imagery, And Personification In The Road Not Taken

930 words - 4 pages

Have you ever encountered a difficult, life-changing decision? Have you ever made a choice, thinking you could go back to the other route, but had your decision lead to other decisions and so on, until you ultimately realize you’re too far to turn back? In “The Road Not Taken,” Robert Frost interprets these divergent paths, or irreversible decisions that must be made in our life, through the stylistic devices of metaphor, imagery, and personification, illustrating that there are challenging choices ahead which may initially seem equal, but that once those decisions are made, they can actually make “all the difference”(20).

This poem employs an extended metaphor, allowing the reader to imagine several comparisons. The poet states, “Two roads diverged in a yellow wood” (1). On a literal level, it is clear that there are two roads branching off in different directions in a yellow wood, or during autumn. A closer reading reveals that the “roads” could represent the choices and paths people make in life. Moreover the poet specifically designates, “Two roads,” which implies a difficult decision to be made. One can choose to take the easier, or the harder of the two. The “yellow wood” could additionally express a world full of bright ideas and opportunities which may be difficult to choose from. It also establishes the poem’s autumnal setting. Frost emphasizes the season by describing the fallen leaves that are undisturbed. Since autumn is followed by winter, it is a season of urgency and decay rather than of life and growth. It symbolizes the middle of one’s life or the transition of human life that ends in death. The speaker would like to come back to this place, but he knows he will never be able to. He can only move forward until he reaches the end of his life. In line 3, the author points out, “And be one traveler, long I stood.” From this, readers can assume that he is merely a traveler deciding which trail he should take, but moreover the deeper meaning is that his choice is challenging. When the poet says, “long I stood,” it illustrates that he had to stop and ponder, because his decision between the two options was difficult. Readers can arrive at the conclusion that life is full of difficult decisions which we may inevitably need to make.

In the next few stanzas, Frost illustrates the decisions using imagery to better appeal to our senses. It reflects the uncertainty behind of the choice that the traveler faces. His reluctance is already demonstrated in line 3, “long I stood” as he ponders his options. Frost also states in line 5 that one path is “bent in the undergrowth,” suggesting a hint of darkness. On the other hand, the other road is “grassy and wanted...

Find Another Essay On Metaphors, Imagery, and Personification in The Road Not Taken

The Road Not Taken Analysis

1044 words - 4 pages The Road Not Taken AnalysisThe Road Not Taken, a poem by Robert Frost, is related to the tough situation of making decisions throughout life. Specifically, one's decision in a critical situation could turn out to be a complete...

The road not taken 2 Essay

1319 words - 5 pages "The Road Not Taken" In analyzing the poem "The Road Not Taken" by...

The Regretful Traveler in Robert Frost’s The Road Not Taken

857 words - 3 pages Robert Frost’s “The Road Not Taken” (rpt. In Thomas R. Arp and Greg Johnson, Perrine’s Literature: Structure, Sound, and Sense, 10th ed. [Boston: Wadsworth, 2009] 725 presents itself with a traveler that is dissatisfied with the decision that he has to make. A situation of life sometime requires a decision to be made between two things that will have a huge impact in the end. The consequences are not always what we expect. I will now explain...

Religious Symbolism in Robert Frost's The Road Not Taken

712 words - 3 pages Religious Symbolism in “The Road Not Taken”       In “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost, there are many religious analogies. Most people agree that in the poem Frost was expressing the belief that it is the road or path that one takes or chooses that makes him the man he is today and will be tomorrow. Everyone is a traveler on life’s roads. In the poem there is never just one road to take. Religion can be found in this poem by the...

Personal Choices in Robert Frost's The Road Not Taken

616 words - 2 pages Personal Choices and The Road Not Taken                    When I read The Road Not Taken, I thought right away of the choice I made in high school not to study foreign languages. In the poem, the speaker makes his choice in either fall or spring - when the woods are yellow. I see both these seasons as times of new beginnings. In spring, everything...

The Road Not Taken Essay: Figurative and Literal Meaning

11613 words - 46 pages 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;The two roads symbolize, obviously, the choices that the speaker faces in life. He cannot take both, as much as he would like to, so he spends time in comtemplation and observation. He cannot see far, not far enough to make a confident decision as to the better...

Road Not Taken

812 words - 3 pages "The Welcome Table" an Analytical View"The Welcome Table" by Alice Walker encompasses two themes that are both old and new. Racism and religion are addressed separately yet focus remains equally concentrated throughout the text. "Identifying the theme in a piece of literature is not a summary of the plot; it is not a statement about a dominant...

Fate, Destiny and Free Will in Robert Frost's The Road Not Taken

1229 words - 5 pages The Road Not Taken:  The Paradox of Free Will Robert Frost's poem, "The Road Not Taken", is a profound philosophical approach illustrating the paradox of free will.  In the first line, Frost uses the metaphor "Two roads diverged" (1), to establish not only the dilemma of the traveler in the poem, but life itself.  The decisions we make in life, like the traveler in "The Road Not Taken", are not to be taken lightly.  There is a...

The Road Not Taken and Neither Out Far Nor in Deep by Robert Frost

1954 words - 8 pages The Road Not Taken and Neither Out Far Nor in Deep by Robert Frost Robert Lee Frost is an American poet who is known for his verse concerning nature and New England life. He was born in San Francisco in 1874. When his father died in 1885, his mother moved the family to Lawrence, Massachusetts. Frost attended college sporadically after graduating high school and made a living by working as a bobbin boy in a wool mill, a shoemaker, a...

Literary Analysis Essay: “The Road Not Taken”

828 words - 3 pages In the poem, “The Road Not Taken”, the author Robert Frost employs several different types of poetic methods throughout his poem. Such methods as symbolism, imaginary, connotation, and tone are uniquely utilized to express the overall theme of the poem. These methods make this poem emotional and complex. In addition, the author is actually focusing on himself. The title “The Road Not Taken” is emphasizing the word “Not” more so than the other...

The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost

1200 words - 5 pages In Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Not Taken” personification is used through the symbolization ‎of the roads. Frost’s metaphorical embodiment of the two roads reflected as ways, journey and ‎even as an adventure in life. He describes the decision people need to take in their lives as he ‎had to, when he was needed to choose between two roads to go in his life. The poem amplifies ‎Frost’s own life and decisions. The poem is addressed to all people...

Similar Essays

The Road Not Taken Essay

673 words - 3 pages To Be or Not to Be"To be or not to be, that is the question." Shakespeare's infamous line illustrates one of the most important aspects of poetry, essence over meaning. Many literary critics believe that a good poem must not only give a meaning, but also give an experience as well. Archibald MacLeish states in his poem "

The Road Not Taken Essay

1289 words - 5 pages      In analyzing the poem 'The Road Not Taken'; by Robert Frost, it represents 'the classic choice of a moment and a lifetime.';(pg 129) He relies much on the reflections of nature to convey his theme. However, this poem seems to be in essence very simple but opens the door for many interpretations. In using a simple fork in a road, Frost writes much to symbolize life and choices in which one will make. Frost uses unique ability to see an...

Symbolism, Imagery, And Theme Of The Road Not Taken By Robert Frost

691 words - 3 pages Symbolism, Imagery, and Theme of The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost How can an author effectively convey a universal message to the broadest audience possible? Simple. The author must simply create a completely impartial narrator, devoid of sex, status, or age. The Road Not Taken is a poem told by an impartial narrator who has come to a crossroads in his/her life. The crossroads is represented by a forked path that leads through a forest....

The Other Road In Robert Frost's The Road Not Taken

1698 words - 7 pages The Other Road in Robert Frost's The Road Not Taken           In his celebrated poem "The Road Not Taken," Robert Frost describes the decision one makes when reaching a fork in the road. Some interpret Frost as suggesting regret on the part of the traveler as to not choosing the path he forgoes, for in doing so he has lost something significant. Others believe he is grateful for the selection, as it has made him the man he is. The...