Monday, April 07, 2008

Day 6 Poetry: The Road Not Taken

Life is alot about decisions and choices. They don't come with guarantees: you don't have the luxury of knowing whether or not you made the "right" decision until afterwards. And even then, who can say with any certainty that one path is better or safer than another?
I think I first heard this poem in elementary school. I knew early on it would be necessary for me to venture into foreign territory at points in my life. And it's turned out that way. As in:
"A ship in harbor is safe, but it doesn't see anything."
Today, please enjoy the poetry and wisdom of Mr. Robert Frost (1874–1963). Mountain Interval. 1920.
The Road Not Taken

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.


  1. Very wise words ... travel your own road because it's the best path!

  2. hello anon! here it's late night and i'll bet you're at work? have a fine day!

  3. Nice poem... there is no sure road.

  4. Such wisdom in this post here today. Very right, of course, life is all about choices. And you don't get any guarantees.

  5. You're right KJ, I should stop work right now and travel the fine path to not working! Heehee

  6. Thank you, KJ -- this poem is a favorite. I remember listening to it on a vinyl record my dad had of Frost reading his own work. I'll always love Frost, even if he was very critical of Pearl Buck. If you see a photo of them at the Pulitzer award ceremony ... they both won the same year ... you'll notice that Jack and Jackie Kennedy are seated right between Frost and Buck so they wouldn't have to talk to each other!

  7. When I was a young kid, we did not even have roads! Okay, I'll stop being so literal. How would you know? Can't you google it? Surely today, we have GPS and Google maps. Oops, still literal. My gosh, how many paths did I not take? too many and how sure am I that I generally took is the right one? I look at my children and they are happy, and I have a husband who adores me and my family, friend in my heart...and I draw whenever I can sometimes, that's enough for me...but I really should start walking the painting path again.

  8. Thanks for all the great poetry!

  9. One of my favorite poems. Growing up with visits to my Uncle's farm, I spent a lot of time in the woods, and I just loved the fact that someone took what I did and made it art. As an adult, I realized the woods at Frost's time were more of a day to day thing, but as I child I thought he went walking in the woods, just like me.

    In 5th grade I took home a paperback "anthology of narrative verse" that someone was going to throw out. I think it may have changed my life.

  10. This was a favorite of mine too. I memorized and recited it at some school function. Reaffirming for anyone who has strayed from the norm.