ROBERT FROST Masterpieces: The Road Not Taken Fire and IceStopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
BIOGRAPHY Born in San Francisco in 1874, hereturned with his family to NewEngland. After briefly attending Dartmouthand Harvard colleges and working as ajournalist and a schoolteacher, hepurchased a farm in New Hampshire,where he started his career as a poet.
BIOGRAPHY Frost wrote about the natural world, and also about his struggle to raise a family in depression times. In 1912, he took his family to England, where he published A Boy’s Will (1913), North of Boston. He got famous in Europe.
BIOGRAPHY He was familiar with the ideas We find in Frost’s poems some ofof William James and other Thoreau’s love of isolation, Hawthorne’s dark vision, Longfellow’smodern psychologists, but also he traditional craftsmanship, Dickinson’swas equally familiar with the works dry humor, and Robinson’s realisticof William Cullen Bryant, Ralph characterization.Waldo Emerson, and other 19th He speaks in a common speech,century masters, coupled with a unaffected, a modern Plain Style.modern sense of irony.
THE ROAD NOT TAKENTwo roads diverged in a yellow wood 1. What diverged in the yellowAnd sorry I could not travel both wood?And be one traveler, long I stood a) Two rivers. b) Two roadsAnd looked down one as far as I couldTo where it bent in the undergrowth; 5 2. About what was the speaker sorry in the first stanza? a) For not taking both roads. b) For being in the wood.
THE ROAD NOT TAKENThen took the other, as just as fairAnd having perhaps the better claim, 3. According to line 7, why did the second road had better claim?Because it was grassy and wanted wear; a) Because it was secure.Though as for that, the passing there b) Because no one had passed by it.Had worn them really about the same, 10
THE ROAD NOT TAKENAnd both that morning equally lay 4. For what did the speakerIn leaves no step had trodden black. “keep” the first road?Oh, I kept the first for another day! a) For another opportunity. b) For nothing.Yet knowing how way leads on to way,I doubted if I should ever come back. 15
THE ROAD NOT TAKENI shall be telling this with a sigh 5. How does the speaker think he will be telling the story “ages andSomewhere ages and ages hence: ages hence”?Two roads diverged in a wood and I— a) With a sigh. b) With tears in his eyes.I took the one less traveled by,And that has made all the difference. 20 6. What has “made all the difference”? a) Taking the most travelled by. b) Taking the less travelled by.
THE ROAD NOT TAKEN Interpreting: • What might the roads represent? The choices we have to take in the different stages of our lives. • Does the speaker think he made the wrong choice? Why or why not? At the moment he doesn’t think like that, but he knows that in the future he will regret not having taken the other choice, or at least, imaging how things would be if he had taken the other opportunity .
FIRE AND ICE 1. What are the two things “someSome say the world will end in fire, say” the world will end in,Some say in ice. according to the speaker?From what I’ve tasted of desire a. Wind and fireI hold with those who favor fire. b. Fire and IceBut if it had to perish twice, 5I think I know enough of hate 2. What emotion does the poetTo say that for destruction ice suggest that the two emotionsIs also great have in common? a) Fire/ pain – ice/indifferenceAnd would suffice. 9 b) Fire/desire – Ice/hate
FIRE AND ICE Interpreting: • What does the poem suggest that the two emotions have in common? The poem suggests that both desire and hate are strong emotions that could bring destruction, sadness, devastation to the world. • What other kinds of destruction besides destruction of the world might the poem be about? Destruction of human lives, destruction of human relationship within others, destruction of the nature.
STOPPING BY WOODS ON A SNOWY EVENINGWhose woods these are I think I know. He gives his harness bells a shakeHis house is in the village, though; To ask if there is some mistake. 10He will not see me stopping here The only other sounds the sweepTo watch his woods fill up with snow. Of easy wind and downy flake.My little horse must think it queer 5 The woods are lovely, dark, and deep,To stop without a farmhouse near But I have promises to keep, And miles to go before I sleep, 15Between the woods and frozen lake And miles to go before I sleep.The darkest evening of the year.
STOPPING BY WOODS ON A SNOWY EVENING Interpreting: • What causes the speaker to stop? The panorama of the woods fill up with snow • What do the owner and the horse have in common? Both the owner and the horse think that taking a time for observing and admiring the nature is rare. • How do they differ from the speaker? The speaker gets fascinated with the panorama, while the others think it is quite normal.
STOPPING BY WOODS ON A SNOWY EVENING • Why does the speaker leave the woods? Because he has to keep his way. He cannot stay all the time there since life goes on. • Does he regret leaving? No, because he knows he has “promises to keep”, important things to do. • What might sleep mean? It might mean the death, while the “miles to go” is the journey of life.