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The Road Not Taken

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on 13 October 2015

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Transcript of The Road Not Taken

Tone and Mood
At the start of the poem, the mood is filled with anticipation and excitement for the road ahead, although the tone of the passage is filled with uncertainty.

This is a contrast towards the end of the poem when the tone and mood become more serious, this is because of the major decision he has to make in his life and how it may effect him for the rest of his life. The narrator is unsure about the road he or she is going to take. So he thinks for quite a while contemplating his decision.

To summerise, the mood of the poem seems to be light-hearted in parts part serious for most. Every single word in this poem has been thought out and has an individual meaning to it.
'The Road Not Taken' uses many metaphors during the course of the poem. In fact the whole poem is basically a metaphor for life and choosing which way to go in life. The use of metaphoric language in the poem is part of the reason why it is so misunderstood. The main use of metaphor is to illustrate the process of decision making.

'two roads diverge in a yellow wood' the yellow wood represents the speakers life. 'the fork in the road' represents the choice that the speaker has to make. Not being able to see past the undergrowth means that we cannot see into the future and how there is no guarantees.

it has a sense that the speaker has to make a choice and cannot turn back. the last line imply s that the choice has changed his life whether it be good or bad.

There are no similes in 'The Road Not Taken'
History of the Poem
The poem - The Road Not Taken was published in 1916 by American author Robert Frost. He wrote the poem in England from 1912 to 1915. He then returned to New Hampshire and a year later published the iconic poem.

The poem has been seen as one of the most iconic poems and one of Frosts best work. Although the poem is seen to be one of the most misunderstood poems. Frost once said that the poem was about his friend Edward Thomas and how no matter what road he goes down in life, he will look back and regret his decision.

In 1961, Robert Frost said that 'The Road Not Taken' was a 'tricky' poem because of how many people misinterpreted the poem.

The poem contains 4 stanza's with 5 lines. The poem was intended to be a friendly mock to his friend Edward Thomas. This was because of the indecisiveness on their many walks together.
Sensory Imagery
Many of Robert Frost's poems show a strong connection to nature and the earths beauty. During the start of the poem, Frost takes time to explain the scenery of the two paths ahead of the speaker.
He explains that the forest is yellow, meaning it is Autumn. This is also shown by how the paths are covered with leaves.

In the poem there is no mention of taste, smell, touch or any other sensations. The Sensory imagery used in the poem is completely visual by the way of the scenery. "And both that morning equally lay" imply's that the poem is in the morning meaning that he is at the start of a journey which is the speakers life. This also imply's that the person is young and looking into the future.

Frost also mentions that the path is "grassy and wants wear" meaning that that particular path looks tempting, but he decides to take his own road in life.

The poem follows a strict pattern of ABAAB, pattern makes the poem sound more pleasing in the way it flows in waves. The end of each line is masculine, meaning that each consists of one syllable in each with exception to the last word being difference where the 'hence' is emphasized.

The rhyme in the poem is not obvious, when you read the poem by itself without knowing the rhythmic system, you will find it hard to understand the rhyme, rhythm and structure of the poem.
Underlying Meaning
The Road Not Taken has many underlying messages. If you went through the poem, line by line and really thought about the message, you would be surprised.
Starting with the first line, The narrator is at a fork in the road (path, because of the time.), during Autumn.
The second and third line means that he wants to walk down both roads at once, but he can't, he has to choose one. "And sorry I could not travel both" means that he may regret his decision.

The fourth and fifth line means that he really wants to go down both paths and is thinking about decision. He can only see down to the first turn, meaning that his life is unknown in the distant future.
The last few lines are when the poem jumps forward in time by years. The speaker will be telling this with a sigh meaning that he is unsure of his important decision.
The next line is a repetition of the first line, this may be used to remind the reader of the story.
The next line shows his decision and which path he took, which was the one less traveled by, which was the one less worn.

Finally, the last line "And that has made all the difference" shows that the speaker took the road that not many other people did take. It doesn't say whether it was the right choice. We do not know whether his choice was the right one.
Poetic Devices Included
Poetic Devices Included
The Road Not Taken
Robert Frost Assessment Task
English 2015 Term 4

Sam Goldsmith
- http://www.cummingsstudyguides.net/Guides2/RoadNot.html
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