Robert Lee Frost
*Frost's father was a teacher and later an editor of the San Francisco .
*After his father's death on May 5, 1885, in due time the family moved across the country to Lawrence, Massachusetts under the patronage of (Robert's grandfather) William Frost, Sr., who was an overseer at a New England mill.
*Frost graduated from Lawrence High School in 1892. Frost's mother joined the Swedenborgian church and had him baptized in it, but he left it as an adult.
*In 1894 he sold his first poem, "My Butterfly: An Elegy" (published in the November 8, 1894 edition of the New York.
* He married Elinor Miriam White, but she demurred, wanting to finish college (at St. Lawrence University) before they married.
* they were married at Harvard University, where he attended liberal arts studies for two years.
He did well at Harvard, but left to support his growing family. Grandfather Frost had, shortly before his death.
*Robert Frost's personal life was plagued with grief and loss:
His father died of tuberculosis in 1885, when Frost was 11, leaving the family with just $8.
* Frost's mother died of cancer in 1900. In 1920,
*Frost had to commit his younger sister, Jeanie, to a mental hospital, where she died nine years later.
*Mental illness apparently ran in Frost's family, as both he and his mother suffered from depression, and his daughter Irma was committed to a mental hospital in 1947. Frost's wife, Elinor, also experienced bouts of depression.
*Elinor and Robert Frost had six children.
The Road not Taken
*The speaker stands in the woods, considering a fork in the road. Both ways are equally worn and equally overlaid with un-trodden leaves.
The speaker chooses one, telling himself that he will take the other another day
*Frost claims that he wrote this
poem about his friend Edward Thomas, with whom he had walked many times in the
woods near London
*Yet he knows it is unlikely that he will have the opportunity to do so And he admits that someday in the future he will recreate the scene with a slight twist
* He will claim that he took the less-traveled road.
*"The Road Not Taken" consists of four stanzas of five lines.
*The rhyme scheme is ABAAB.
There are four stressed syllables per line, varying on an iambic tetrameter base.*
*Of the two roads the speaker says "the passing there / Had worn them really about the same." In fact, both roads "that morning lay / In leaves no step had trodden black." Meaning: Neither of the roads is less traveled.
We can rename the title. "The Road Less Traveled" = "The Road Not Taken."