An Analysis of “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost

Before we get into an analysis of “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost, let’s take a look at how to do a poetry analysis. Your teacher will be so impressed that she’ll ask you how to do a poetry analysis when you’re finished.

Here’s a symbolism in the poems of Robert Frost lesson plan.

How to do a Poetry Analysis

Lesson Plans of Robert Frost

You want to teach Frost but you’re afraid of an ice cold reception because you don’t have enough time to prepare a great lesson? No worries. These Robert Frost poetry lesson plans are ready to use.

Just follow the steps and you’ll be writing your own poetry analyses in no time.

1.  Print the poem. Most poems can be found online. If you have a book you’re allowed to write in, then write in it.
2.  Annotate the poem using the following steps:

  • identify the rhyme scheme
  • identify the meter and any examples of straying from the meter
  • if the poem is difficult, summarize each stanza
  • circle important words, ambiguous words, and words you need to look up
  • circle examples of figurative language
  • write questions
  • write down insights.

3. Draw conclusions based on the information you gathered while annotating.
4. Write the poem analysis. The following steps are for how to write a paragraph analysis:

  • The topic sentence should state the poem’s theme (one that may not be so obvious).
  • The examples, facts, citations from the poem you’re analyzing should support your topic sentence.
  • Provide analysis explaining how your facts support your topic sentence.

5. Impress your friends and neighbors with a brilliant poem analysis.

The Road Not Taken

Resultado de imagen para two roads diverged in a yellow woodTWO 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 T
o where it bent in the undergrowth;   5
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,   10 

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.  15  

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.  20  

An Analysis of “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost

Poetic picture with link to poetry lesson plans.

Imagine having 11 complete poetry units with handouts and lesson plans completed. You don’t need to imagine. These units are teacher ready and student ready. Just print, make copies, and accept accolades from colleagues and students.

Of all Robert Frost poems, none are more famous than “The Road Not Taken.” My analysis of it leads to the following observations and queries.

  1. The rhyme scheme is a b a a b
  2. The poem uses the well known metaphor of a path being compared to life, and a divergent path representing a choice.
  3. Both paths are appealing to the poem’s speaker (2).
  4. He can only see so far down the first path and took the other (4-5).
  5. The first path is full of undergrowth; the second is grassy (5,8).
  6. They are both worn just the same (10).
  7. He chooses the second path, yearning to take the first another day, but deep down inside knowing he won’t (13-15).
  8. He knows he makes the wrong choice and sighs (16-17).
  9. He lies by saying he “took the one less traveled by” (19).
  10. The last line is ambiguous: is he rationalizing or is he being ironic.
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