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General Discussion Requirements:

Be sure to use evidence (support) from the poem by quoting and by using a parenthetical citation -- there are two acceptable methods of citing a poem: e.g., the speaker attempts to convince himself of a deeper meaning more than once, such as by stating that "the other" road has "perhaps the better claim" (Frost 856). OR by citing the line numbers: (Frost 9-10).

  • Note that MLA requires a slash (/) to denote line breaks for poems, which can be interesting for some poetry, e.g.:
    The minimalist speaker refutes capitalization and grammar standards to directly state, "i carry your heart with me(i carry it in / my heart)" (Cummings 1-2).
    • In this case, the poem's first two lines are: "i carry your heart with me(i carry it in / my heart)i am never without it(anywhere" (1-2). The first full stanza reads:
    • my heart)i am never without it(anywherei go you go,my dear;and whatever is doneby only me is your doing,my darling)

  • Please follow the punctuation and capitalization of your poem as it appears originally in the text; merely insert the slash (/) to denote the line break.

Remember that we are citing the author and the textbook more fully in our major essays; no Works Cited page is needed for any Discussion assignment, but a parenthetical citation should appear when appropriate.

"The Road Not Taken"

This poem is often misunderstood because the final few lines are often quoted out of context; the poem's title is actually focused on the road "not taken" rather than the road "less traveled" (Frost 19). Similarly, the poem's speaker notes more than once how the mind tries to trick itself into making meaning out of seemingly similar or random events.

Write a 250-word response answering the following:

  • In the first stanza, the poem's speaker gazes fixedly at one of the divergent roads, almost studying it. However, at the start of the second stanza, he impulsively "then took the other" (Frost 6). Looking at other parts of the poem, such as the "sigh" in the final stanza, was his decision impulsive? If so, what might a life-choice or decision be that would mirror these metaphoric circumstances?


  • Your original post must be at least 250 words.
  • You should be specific and reference details from the text for your answer. (See the note above regarding how to format citations).
  • Use a / to indicate a line break when citing poems; see our textbook and online writing (Links to an external site.)Links to an external for more information.
  • You must use full sentences and proper grammar.
  • Use the third person objective (no "I" or "you")
  • Use the literary present tense (the narrator states, not "stated")

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The Road Not Taken e Launch Audio in a New Window BY ROBERT FROST 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.
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