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Death in Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening Essay


Death on a Snowy Evening

Throughout the poem Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost, it tells the story of an unknown individual traveling down a trail. As this person continues moving forward down the path, they get distracted by the woods as the snow lightly falls down. The horse wants to keep moving along while this individual is still confused. They are constantly facing the conflict of going into the woods or following their promise to keep moving on the trail. Through this travel, Frost connects the idea of the trail to life and the distractions of life to the woods and it is often shown through the tone as it builds up in the poem becoming more significant in the last stanza. The main theme of this poem is about the distractions of life and trying to move past them.

As the individual discovers woods off the trail in the first stanza, they are immediately contradicted of whose woods they are and became an instant distraction. This is similar to the distractions of life when times can get stressful and many people may just want to give up. Within the stanza, Frost shows mellowness in the tone he wrote with as a major distraction that has come about. He writes, To watch his woods fill up with snow (Frost, 4). The individuals life is becoming filled with stress, but it has not become a major problem yet and is not seen with great importance in Frosts writing at this point.

With the individual having trouble keeping straight on the path, the horse is noticing a change since they probably do not normally stop if the horse is responding in a surprised matter. In the second stanza, it states, The darkest evening of the year (Frost, 8). This quotation shows the most stressful day of this particular persons life as it was the darkest or worst day that they have lived. Now this original dilemma of the woods is starting to become more significant and it is starting to interfere with the movement on the trail.

Since the individual has been stopped at the woods for so long confused on whether to go in them or continue on the trail, they do not know what to do at the moment. In the last stanza, it reads, The woods are lovely, dark, and deep (Frost, 13). The fact that these three woods are grouped together says something about the tone that has now been reached by Frost. The way woods are described may have attracted the individual to go into the woods as they saw it as an escape from all the distractions and stress of life that have been going on. It now seems that going in the woods will not allow for an ability to come back out which states the idea of death. Now the reader can see what this problem has come to with the attitude of the word choice used by Frost making it seem like a sweet, peaceful death and the distraction has reached the peak of its damage to the individual. The writer also states the word, But (Frost, 14) and this reveals a contradiction as the individual feels that he wants to give up but also has promises to live up to. With the last two lines being repeated, it may show the change in tone to a more serious attitude than it as ever reached before now that we are talking about life and death. At the end of the last two lines, the word, Sleep (Frost, 15-16), proves that the individual has given up and wants to die to let everything go because he felt he couldnt move on past the woods or in other words, the stress. All throughout the last stanza, Frost shows how the distraction got the most of this individual and they could not move past it.

During this poem Robert Frost will show this theme of distractions in a hidden manor has he used an unknown person traveling down a trail but getting distracted by woods and cant quite move past them. In showing that, he used tone to amplify the situation as it progressed to a bigger problem than it was originally thought.

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