In most poetry and literature people can pick out certain characteristics that tend to appear in each piece of the authors work. In the work of Robert Frost he has certain ideas and themes that can be found in many of his creations of literature. Nature is one theme that seems to play a major role in the poetry he writes. He tends to use nature to symbolize something that has to do with human life or situations that humans face. There is usually a deeper meaning buried in his work. In the poem ‘The Road Not Taken’ nature comes into play when he introduces to the reader two separate paths that the speaker comes upon in the woods. The speaker is faced with the decision of which path he will choose to travel. He has to choose only one path, therefore leaving one that he will not get to experience. The disappointment of the speaker is shown when he expresses that he is ‘sorry. . . [he] could not travel both’ (line 2).
He also shows his ‘hesitancy of the decision’ (Barry 13) when it is stated ‘Though as for that, the passing there / Had worn them really about the same’ (line 9-10). It seems as if he is expressing an ‘inability to turn his back completely on any possibility’ (Barry 13) of returning when the poems reads ‘Oh, I kept the first for another day!’ (line 13). He also knew that the possibilities of him actually returning to ever walk the path not chosen were very slim. He made a decision and ‘took the other’ (line 6) path. It is obvious that these two roads in the woods symbolize paths in life and choices that people make in the journey of life itself. Decisions that people make, large or small, have an impact on their future.
The speaker says that the path he choose ‘made all the difference’ (line 20) in his life. Frost does not name specific decisions that are made and he does not tell what the results are. He leaves the option open for the reader to fill in his own circumstances that he has faced life. In lines 16 and 17 the speaker says that in ‘ages and ages hence’ he would ‘be telling this with a sigh’. This shows that the he may be having ‘regrets for the possibilities of the past. . . [and] is less concerned for the road taken than for the road not taken’ (Barry 12).