A Boundless Moment Robert Frost Analysis

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Desire can come in a variety of circumstances, whether it is nostalgia or something looking forward to in the future. The future could hold material or sentimental desires wanting to be achieved. In Robert Frost’s poem A Boundless Moment it states, “He halted in the wind, and - what was that. Far in the maples, pale, but not a ghost? He stood there bringing March against his thought, And yet too ready to believe the most”. The traveler in this poem encounters a wanting and an appreciation. Many of life’s wants go unnoticed until they begin with an instance of realization, followed by chasing a desire and thinking back on missed chances. Our stages in our life encounter this cycle in our everyday environments. Desire isn’t always in our thoughts in today’s society. It is essential that we learn from the written experiences of the past to recognize desire’s variety of roles in society. Desire in Illusion Frost’s display of nature helps define and clarify the connection of nature and desire in the A Boundless Moment. The poem portrays immense beauty, but is interrupted by the illusion that the leaves the two men see are dead. John F. Lynen of Yale University discusses in his book that, “The incident shows man's tragic limitations. His imagination cannot sustain the ideal vision long for a “boundless moment” it can mold nature to its desires, then the "Paradise-in-bloom" again becomes the dead tree of reality” (Lynen 147). Even in circumstances of illusion and imagination, desire doesn’t distort itself. The molding of nature holds its purpose with imagination to help create the desire. Frost’s use of imagery also helps to highlight the desire and the return to reality. The two men “stood a moment so in a strange worl... ... middle of paper ... ...en them and the rest (Whitman 1037). Whitman’s casual tone suggests a state of normalcy for all of these people that would otherwise be persecuted for their societal state. The tone also suggests an egalitarian outlook for society with Whitman’s belief that the meal, “is for the wicked just the same as the righteous”(Whitman 1036). In a way Whitman’s statement regarding equality seems almost as a sort of religious doctrine. Ed Folsom, author of The University of Iowa’s Whitman Quarterly Review, includes a detailed analysis of this principle from poet and literary critic C.K Williams in the Review’s 2010 edition. Williams defines this “doctrine” as, “a religion of the imagination, a kind of anti-religion that sought to free rather than repress desire and to allow the wild leaps mind can make towards truth if it’s released from conceptual strictures”(Folsom 68).

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