The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost – Bookworms Club


My laptop continues undergoing a tune-up before I start school in mid-January, and both packed and yet-to-be filled boxes abound around the condo we’re moving from at the end of the month. I’m focused on organizing the pieces of our lives so the next stop in our journey unfurls as uncluttered and stress-free as possible so I can participate in class without being too distracted. Still, I’m hard-wired to find time to write and read. I picked up Meaghan Daum’s new book of essays, “Unspeakable,” and am up late into the night reading and re-reading it. What an amazing piece of work. She’s a brilliant writer.

This morning skimming through email I found this timely and timeless poem in a LinkedIn discussion. We’re all entering a New Year if not a new home. I hope you, too, are as inspired by this masterpiece as I head back onto the path full of boxes.

 “The Road Not Taken” is one of Frost’s most critically acclaimed poems. The poem starts with the narrator standing at a fork road where he is supposed to make a decision about which road to take. As he knows he cannot take both road at the same time, he try his best to look at one road till it bends in the undergrowth, but then he takes the opposite road. While travelling through the selected road he is constantly thinking of the road not taken. As most of us do, probably Frost is pointing to the truth of life. That none of us try to concentrate on our present task or the path which we have taken. We always try to think of the lost benefits from those untrodden paths, as the saying goes – “ The road is always greener on the other end”. 

 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  

 In the end our narrator writes that he will be recalling this journey with a “sigh” in the future. Whether the sigh is a happy sigh or sad sigh, is something we as readers have to interpret. Or maybe even the narrator also didn’t know. All he knew was that, “All the difference in your life was finally because of the road you selected.”

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost – Bookworms ClubBook

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