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Robert Frost Poetry Analysis

Essay by   •  June 4, 2011  •  Essay  •  771 Words (4 Pages)  •  2,417 Views

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Robert Frost takes our imagination to a journey through wintertime with 
his two poems "Desert Places" and "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening". These two poems reflect the beautiful scenery that is present in the snow covered woods and awakens us to new feelings. Even though these poems both have winter settings they contain very different tones. One has a feeling of depressing loneliness and the other a feeling of welcome solitude. They show how the same setting can have totally different impacts on a person depending on 
their mindset at the time. These poems are both made up of simple stanzas and diction but they are not straightforward poems.

In the poem "Desert Places" the speaker is a man who is traveling 
through the countryside on a beautiful winter evening. He is completely surrounded with feelings of loneliness. The speaker views a snow-covered field as a deserted place. "A blanker whiteness of benighted snow/ With no expression, 
nothing to express" (Line 11-12). Whiteness and blankness are two key ideas in this poem. 
The white symbolizes open and empty spaces. The snow is a white blanket that 
covers up everything living. The blankness symbolizes the emptiness that the speaker feels. To him there is nothing else around except for the unfeeling snow and his lonely thoughts.

In the poem "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" it shows us that irrationality has its place. "My little horse must think it queer/
To stop without a farmhouse near" (line 5-6). On the darkest night of the year, according to society, shelter is first priority. Some of the key phrases that contribute to the speaker's dilemma are "woods are lovely" and "promises to keep" because they outline the conflict. The imagery shows how beautiful the forest is, making his decision more difficult. The repetition of his journey shows that it is important he be practical. Overall, the speaker must submit to what is acceptable: civilization.

The tone of the speaker in "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" is disheartened, but overall at ease. Although the speaker is happy to stop briefly in the woods, he is unhappy because he has to leave and return to the village. The speaker's depression stems mainly from his unwanted responsibility and feeling of regret. The basic conflict in the poem, which is resolved in the last stanza, is between an attraction toward the woods and the drudgery of life and responsibility outside of the woods. "And miles to go before I sleep,/ And miles to go before I sleep" (line 15-16).

The tone of the speaker in "Desert Places" is opposite of "Stopping by Woods", the speaker

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