The Meaning Not taken


A very famous poem by Robert Frost, “The Road Not Taken”, what a poem it is! With a deep and profound meaning! Are you sure you are on the same line? Are you referring to the conventional meaning? Well, the fact here is, The Road Not Taken Is Often misinterpreted. The original theme that was in Frost’s mind isn’t known by a lot of people. Over the years, it meaning has been moulded as per our convenience.

What most people don’t realize is that the great American poet was being ironic when he famously wrote that taking the road less travelled “made all the difference.” The confusion comes up in his poem “The Road Not Taken,” in which a traveller howard-sochurek-american-poet-robert-frost-standing-in-meadow-during-visit-to-the-gloucester-area-of-englanddescribes choosing between two paths through the woods. In the first three stanzas the traveller describes how the paths were pretty much equal. They “equally lay” and were “just as fair” as each other and were even “worn … really about the same.”

But in the last stanza the traveller comments ironically on how he will someday look robert-frost-the-road-not-taken1back and “with a sigh” claim that choosing the “one less travelled … made all the difference.” People wrongfully interpret this as evidence of the payoff for being a freethinker and not following the crowd, when it is actually a comment about people finding or claiming meaning in arbitrary decisions.

I took the one less travelled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

That so many people misinterpret this line has become famous in itself. Frost may have deliberately misled his readers. Various quotes from Frost’s correspondences suggest that he knew people would misunderstand the meaning – and their confusion even amused him.

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