Explicating The Lover Not Taken

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Explicating The Lover Not Taken Often in life we are faced with two choices, one of which we have to pick. The decision can be life changing, so obviously one wants to choose the right path to go down. In Blanche Farley's The Lover Not Taken we see this same occurrence of a life changing decision. The poem takes Robert Frost's The Road Not Taken and puts a parodistic spin on it, making the poem's narrator choose both objects of her affection, instead of just one. She does, however, still travel the road not usually taken, risking it all for lust. This, along with the poem's many poetic elements, tells the reader to live their life to the fullest now, before it's too late and life has passed you by, leaving a trail of regrets. Both poems share many things in common. The first being the obvious theme of major decision making and choosing the best path, so that life doesn't pass you by. Blanche obviously had Robert Frost's famous poem sitting beside her when she wrote her own rendition of the poem 21 years after Frost's death. Most of the stanzas in each poem match up with one another. Similar words are used as well, such as in the first stanza of each poem "and be one traveler, long I stood"(Frost), and "and mulling it over, long she stood."(Blanche) Both of these lines are undoubtedly similar, and they are both part of a five line stanza that rhymes the ending words of two lines and three lines to each other. Other common poetic elements that are found in The Lover Not Taken, but also shared with Frost's poem are enjambment, irony, and hyperbole. Blanche uses enjambment in almost every other line, keeping the reader on their toes at all times, so as not to miss a line, or pause. Instances of enjambment can be found in the first stanza at the end of lines one, three, five, and carrying over to the second stanza on line seven. Irony is most evident at the end of The Lover Not Taken when the narrator took the fast way home, "and phoned the blond." Her decision is so unexpected because most women would stand by their man and hope to never let lust surpass love. This leaves the reader very surprised when the narrator definitely chooses the road less traveled.

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