Here is a summary and analysis of ‘The Road not Taken’ by Robert Frost, the celebrated poem on making choices in life.
Robert Frost’s The Road not Taken is a beautiful poem about making choices in life. It discusses the very common situation of coming to the crossroads and not knowing which way to choose. Like all Frost poems it begins in delight and ends in wisdom.
One morning the poet came to a junction where two roads diverged in a yellow wood. He stood for a long time there, wondering which way to choose. He was sorry that he could not travel both roads. After considering the prospects of both roads, he took the second one because it was grassy and less travelled by. He kept the first road for another day. But he doubted if he should ever come back because one way leads to another way.
The poem ends quite dramatically when the poet hopes that later in his life he will be able to say with a sigh of relief that choosing the road less traveled by has made all the difference in his life. (Or, is it a sigh of dismay? The reader is left to guess for himself.)
Analysis of The Road not Taken: On the surface the poem is autobiographical, showing Frost’s bold choice to become a poet. He had tried his hands at many things and it was later in his life that he achieved success as a poet. But it is also philosophical, showing the great human dilemma in making a choice, especially when it is the road less traveled by. But many of the critics are of the opinion that Frost wrote the poem to make fun of a friend who would always procrastinate at the crossroads.