Reflection Essay on The Road Not Taken

The poem “Road Not Take;” by Robert Frost explores decision making as part of a complex nature of human race involving contradictory emotions of fear for unknown future, regret for the possible wrong choice and acceptance and pride in defining an individual. The lack of foresight and fear for choosing wrongly result the hesitance in making choices. The diverged roads symbolises choosing between two decisions. The inverted word order “long I stood” emphasizes the length of time Frost has taken to try and speculate about the features about each path.

However, he fails to comprehend what lays beyond as the second path is “just as fair” as the first one, revealing the lack of insight contributing to the uncertainty in making decisions. Although the alliteration, “wanted wear”, hints the second road is not a popular choice, Frost has chosen it to be different, yet his insecurity about the future still makes him doubting his decision with the word choice of “perhaps”. Although eventually a choice is made, Frost is still unsure his decision and the regret for choosing possibly wrongly.

In the title, “The Road Not Taken”, the word “not” shows him wandering the result of choosing the well accepted road thus illustrate his regret in choosing the probable harder path. The emotional attachment with “knowing way leads on to way”, his acknowledges the impossibility to face the same decision again and regret the hardship faced in the unconventional path. The exclamation mark in “Oh, I kept the first for another day” expresses his desire to have an opportunity to re-choose.

After experiencing the fear and regret in making decision, the tone of poem turns and accepted towards end of the poem. The phrase of road “less travelled by” illustrates his gratification to be different and accept his unique choosing. The enjambment of “I-/ I took the one less travelled by” emphasises on “I”, which demonstrates a sense of pride in being who he is. The poem ends with “all the difference” reveals his recognition of his less accepted choice defining who he is as an individual.

The complex nature of decision making is explored in “Road Not Taken” thoroughly with effective techniques. Lack of foresight results fear for choosing wrongly and ambivalent decisions. Regrets for making the less chosen road leaves one to wander the result of the widely accepted road. Making decision involves acceptance and pride also as it defines an individual separate from others. Decision making can happen uncountable times in a lifetime and determination and unique thoughts are required no matter which road one chooses.

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