Robert Lee Frost: The Most Influential American Poet Of The Twentieth Century

1899 words - 8 pages

"Don't ever take a fence down, until you know why it was put up"- a quote from Robert Lee Frost, a well-known American and English poet. Following the death of his father he faced many challenges, including failing to finish college and many unsuccessful jobs. Shadowing his father and mother, he began a career in poetry. With his literary career failing, he and his family moved to England and then back to America a few years later. His success in America began in 1915 when his collection of poems became a sensation. Writing over one-hundred poems and winning countless awards, Frost became a sensation, even speaking in inaugural speeches. He died at the age of eighty-eight. Frost’s most recurring theme was elusiveness. He wrote about the struggles of nature and overall life, using very vivid imagery, making the reader dig deeper into his poems to find the true meaning of each. One of “Frost’s most famous poems, “The Road Not Taken,” has been criticized many times, even one woman calling it "the best example in all of American poetry of a wolf in sheep's clothing.” Overall, Robert Frost was one of the most well-known poets in American history, and his main theme, elusiveness, caused for many varied interpretations and critiques, most of them extraordinary.
Robert Frost was born on March 26, 1874, in San Francisco, California to William and Isabel Prescott. In the article “Robert (Lee) Frost,” it is said that William Prescott was a known newspaper reporter and editor, while Isabel Prescott was a school teacher, both contributing to Frost’s future career. Sadly, in 1884, Frost’s father died when Frost was just eleven years old (“Robert”). In the article “The Road Not Taken,” in the Encyclopedia of World Biography, it is said that this resulted in Frost’s mother, his sister and him relocating to Lawrence, Massachusetts, where his grandparents lived (Byers 130)(“Robert”). Frost became very interested in his school work and graduated from Lawrence High School in 1872 with valedictorian honors. He was also named Class Poet of 1872. Shortly after, he enrolled in Dartmouth College, but soon left (Byers 130-131). After leaving, Frost taught grammar, was a mill worker, and, following his father’s footsteps, became a newspaper reporter (“Robert”). Frost was engaged to a fellow classmate, Elinor White, when he wrote a series of lyrics for her. When White’s reaction wasn’t what Frost had expected, he wandered hundreds of miles south of his home and even thoughts of suicide pondered in Frost’s mind. In 1894, Frost sold his first poem “My Butterfly” to The New York Independent (Byers 131). Finally, Frost and White got married on December 19, 1895; to eventually give birth to six children: Elliot, Lesley, Carol, Irma, Marjorie, and Elinor (“Robert”). “In 1897, Frost entered Harvard University as a special student, but left before completing degree requirements because of a bout with tuberculosis and the birth of his second child” (“Robert”). In 1912, due to...

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