?‘’Frost’s simple style is deceptive and a thoughtful reader will see layers of meaning in his poetry. ’’ Robert Frost (1874-1963) was a pastoral Rural American poet who portrays a benevolent side to New England in the US. Robert Frost was not fond of the fashion of the time. Instead, he adopted the persona of the New England farmer inspired by natural events. This deceptive but realistic poet had quite an individualistic style in comparison to any other poet, his poetry is written in the everyday, vernacular colloquial language in order to bring across the message he wants his audience to receive.
‘’our literature has to come down sooner or later to the talk of everyday life’’. Frost was predominantly coherent with his language use in comparison to many poets, but what you read, may not be what you thought it was initially, hence the deception in his poetry. It is a matter of deciphering the poems to understand the real and actual message, of life. ‘’Poetry is what gets lost in translation’’ The style of his writing is very simplistic, using the colloquial language, ‘’I went to turn the grass once’’.
Frost wrote his poetry in a conversational tone using natural speech patterns, with aspects in it recognizable as New England in their form and phrasing and a sense of the everyday normality, ‘’Call it a day’’. His poetry was also very natural in its wording, using words that most people can understand and that make his poetry seem practical and ordinary. There is nothing complicated about the structure of Frost’s poems; they seem to be translations of everyday events into poetry. Instead of using elaborate phrasings in the lines, his poems speak in a natural, easily comprehensible manner.
A reflection of the poet’s life in New England is evident in his poetry. He wrote of woods, birds, and other parts of a simple life in New England. His works, however, are not only applicable to New England because they can be seen as universal interpretations of common situations. Many people can relate to Frost’s subjects because of their overall simplicity; the situations Frost portrays could essentially happen anywhere. However, his poetry may deceive the audience at first and to get the real message, Frost wants his poetry to be read carefully and deciphered well, by thoughtful readers.
‘’If poetry isn’t understanding at all, the whole word, then isn’t worth anything. ’’ Nature provides a beautiful but passive background to the horrific event in ‘Out-Out’ (1916). This poem outlines the fragility and brevity of life, as some may think. This poem is open to interpretation. Some think it is heavily emphasized on the brutal accident of the boy and others say that it is emphasized on the last two lines ‘’And they since they were not the one dead, turned to their affairs’’. Seamus Heaney commented, that this is the ‘’Grim accuracy’’ of the reality of life.
The poem is written in the everyday language and is quite comprehendible, however, is our initial reaction of the accident the actual message Frost is providing to us? Or is it something deciphered at another level? Focusing on the last two lines, it is the reality that people move on. They forget about incidents like this one and continue with their lives. “In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on. ” ‘Mending wall’ is a quite straight forward poem, there are very little hidden messages in comparison to Frost’s other poetry.
This poem is about people erecting barriers among themselves and Frost is not fond of this style of living, he wants everybody to be united. This poem was recited in Russia during the cold war between the USSR and the US. This poem was meant to provide an understanding to the Russians, why fight? Why can’t everybody be united and work together instead of separating from one another? ‘’We keep the wall between us as we go’’. Along with having a negative outlook on society, Frost does respect the traditional views of his neighbor, although he believes he ‘’moves in darkness’’, he is just one that ‘’will not go behind his father’s saying’’.
‘The tuft of flowers’, on the other hand, is about isolation and loneliness, ‘’one…sun’’. This poem, without a doubt, is about nature and Frost’s appreciation of the beauty of nature. However, is nature the message he wants us to read in this poem? We must have a deeper understanding of this poem before making any rapid observations. ‘’A message from the dawn’’ indicates Frost’s sudden epiphany that he is not alone in this world. A personified butterfly brings him to this realization. Toward the end of the poem, Frost observes what he believes is a sentiment left by a stranger for beauty when waking up every morning, a tuft of flowers.
Frost believes that there is a connection with him and the stranger, ‘’And feel a kindred spirit to my own’’, there is an element of connecting with humans nature and the world of poets. I now understand the importance of endurance of Frost’s poetry, without deciphering his poetry; he may well have the power to deceive his reader. This narrative poem, ‘Acquainted with the night’ can be strongly contrasted with Frost’s other poetry as the setting is in modern city life. This poem is not as deceptive as Frost’s other poetry, e. g. , ‘Out-Out’, although it is still to be understood at a deeper level.
‘’I have out walked the furthest city light’’, There are no signs of civilization for Frost has reached a place where there is no nature. Without nature there is no hope. ‘’Proclaimed the time was neither right nor wrong’’ gives us a sense of stagnant – no future, no past. Frost’s right and wrong choices are dictated by the clock. This 1928 poem has returned to the traditional use of rhyming couplets which haven’t been evident since his 1913 ‘tuft of flowers’. ‘The Road Not Taken’ (1916) reflects Frost’s unusual choices in life, there is a sense of regret as he considers what his life may have been if he chose the other path.
What struck me the most was the last verse, ‘’I shall be telling this with a sigh, somewhere ages and ages hence: two roads diverged in a wood’’ the unusual rhythm indicates Frost’s unusual decisions in life. This poem was written in the time of World War Two, it is the historical aspect of Frost’s early life decisions. I really enjoyed deciphering this poem in particular as there is so much meaning in it which could’ve easily deceived a reader; it is the psychological complexities of his deceiving poetry that strike me the most. Some say Robert Frost had no embossed style.
As he wrote in a letter to a contemporary, “style in prose or verse is that which indicates how the writer takes himself and what he is saying. ” Indeed Frost held style as dominion when writing, but his style cannot really be defined in one word. A close conclusion to his style is that he uses different styles depending upon a number of criteria; theme, situation, importance of event etc. Others may say that his style is the choice of words, known as diction. Many of his poems rhyme, and have eight syllables per line, in a very rhythmic, measured flow as he is a very traditional rural poet.
Frost’s poetry, in my opinion, is deceptive, if not understood properly. I believe his main idea was to propose poetry which may seem one thing on the surface but something very different and complex the further it is deciphered, it is amazing how a poet has such an ability to match the sharpest observation with the most exact word to keep his poetry simple and to the point to bring us to a realization. ‘’I am not a teacher but an awakener…Poetry begins in delight and ends in wisdom’’
Courtney from Study Moose
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