Essay about Desolation and Loneliness in Robert Frost's The Wood Pile

Essay about Desolation and Loneliness in Robert Frost's The Wood Pile

Length: 1949 words (5.6 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

"The Wood-Pile" is like a sequel to "Home Burial," with the man in this instance wandering from a "home" that seems little more than an abstraction to him and to us. More a meditation than a dramatic narrative, it offers the soliloquy of a lone figure walking in a winter landscape. It is a desolate scene possessed of the loneliness of "Desert Places." Attention is focused on the activity of consciousness in this isolated wanderer, and nothing characterizes him as a social being or as having any relationships to another person. While the poem has resemblances, again, to Wordsworth's "Tintern Abbey," or Coleridge's "Dejection: An Ode," it is more random in its structuring and has none of the demarcations of the descriptive-reflective mode. A better way to describe the poem is suggested in a talk by A. R. Ammons, "A Poem as a Walk." "A walk involves the whole person; it is not reproducible; its shape occurs, unfolds; it has a motion characteristic of the walker" (Epoch, Fall, 1968, p. 118).

The man in the poem is not, like Stevens' Crispin, "a man come out of luminous traversing," but more like the "listener" in Stevens' "The Snow Man." In each poem is a recognition of a wintry barrenness made more so in Frost by a reductive process by which possibilities of metaphor - of finding some reassuring resemblances - are gradually disposed of. At the end, the speaker in Frost's poem is as "cool" as is the listener in Stevens, and also as peculiarly unanguished by the situation in which he finds himself. It is as if the wintry prospect, the arrival at something like Stevens' First Idea, a cold clarity without redeeming deceptions, has in itself been an achievement of the imagination. It is something won against all such conventional bla...


... middle of paper ...


...onsciousness; it is wholly self-consuming. As in "Desert Places," another poem about a lonely man walking in a landscape of snow, the man in "The Wood-Pile" could say that "The loneliness includes me unawares." This line is a little poem in itself. It has a syntactical ambiguity more common in Stevens than in Frost. It can mean both that the loneliness includes him but is unaware of doing so, and that the loneliness includes him and he is not aware of its doing so by virtue of his near obliteration. In either case he is not so much included as wiped out; he is included as if he were inseparable from, indistinguishable from, the thing that includes him. He is on the point of being obliterated by the landscape, rather than allowed to exist even as an observer of it, much less a mediating or transcending presence.

Works Cited

Robert Frost: The Work of Knowing.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay about Analysis Of The Poem ' Dust Of Snow ' By Robert Frost

- Robert Frost, well known American poet of 191 poems, has a common message in his writing. Focusing mainly on Birches, The Road Not Taken, Dust of Snow, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Beech, Come In, and In Winter In, his main message is to always focus on the positive when everything else is trying to pull you down. This idea could also be seen as trying to always keep a positive attitude. The thesis above can be proven through a textual analysis. The shortest poem we will be focusing on, Dust of Snow, even proves the thesis to be right....   [tags: Robert Frost, Poetry]

Powerful Essays
2023 words (5.8 pages)

The Road Not Taken, by Robert Frost Essays

- In Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Not Taken” personification is used through the symbolization ‎of the roads. Frost’s metaphorical embodiment of the two roads reflected as ways, journey and ‎even as an adventure in life. He describes the decision people need to take in their lives as he ‎had to, when he was needed to choose between two roads to go in his life. The poem amplifies ‎Frost’s own life and decisions. The poem is addressed to all people who get in to their ‎crossroads in life, where they need to decide between two roads to travel in....   [tags: Robert Frost, Poetic Analysis]

Powerful Essays
926 words (2.6 pages)

The Modernist Period Of Robert Frost Essay

- There have been many exceptional literary figures throughout American history, but very few are as revered as Robert Frost. Frost is considered to be one of the most prominent figures of the modernist period. The modernist period took place during the first half of the twentieth century, and it is characterized by its use of experimentation and belief in individualism (Rahn, 2011). After the death of his father, an eleven-year-old Frost and his family moved to Massachusetts, where he would spend most of his life (“Robert Frost and His Poems,” n.d.)....   [tags: Poetry, Robert Frost]

Powerful Essays
1433 words (4.1 pages)

Desert Places by Robert Frost And Loneliness Essay

- Loneliness Robert Frost is one of the most famous and influential poets in our nation's history. His simple style of writing and constant attention to nature make his poems unique. His poems have captivated thousands and have been analyzed time and time again. Many feel that his poems often times represent emptiness, loneliness, and despair. The poem "Desert Places" could certainly fall into these categories. Robert Frost was a very successful poet with a wife and loving family which begs the question, "Why would Robert Frost choose to write this poem at this period in his life?" When attempting to answer this question one must first analyze the poem....   [tags: Robert Frost]

Free Essays
1313 words (3.8 pages)

Author Robert Frost Essay

- Authors write poetry for many reasons including to prove a point, share life stories or to just make the reader think. But the main reason that they write poems is because of their background and other influences. Robert frost is a great example of a poet influenced by his experiences. These influences show up in most of his poetry but especially in “The Road Not Taken” and “Birches”. Moving to the New England region, influential people and his views on society, and World War I influenced Robert Frost to write much of his poetry and brought him to a stage of worldly fame....   [tags: Biography, Writer, Poet, Robert Frost]

Powerful Essays
1276 words (3.6 pages)

Robert Frost's The Oven Bird Essay example

- Robert Frost's The Oven Bird In his 1916 poem "The Oven Bird" (Baym, Vol. D 1188), Robert Frost chooses a title that presents a single, natural image of a particular species of bird. The title not only identifies this "mid-summer and...mid-wood" bird as the "singer everyone has heard" in the first line, it also establishes the "nature image" as a main theme in the poem. The bird's song presents images of "solid tree trunks," "flowers," and "pear and cherry bloom," while imposing its individual voice on the landscape....   [tags: Robert Frost]

Powerful Essays
1728 words (4.9 pages)

Robert Frost's Directive Essay example

- Robert Frost's "Directive" The speaker of "Directive" is the Robert Frost we know well. He gives us a scene that he has looked at in a way no one else does and seen things that no one else sees. The ghost town "made simple by the loss of detail" (2-3) is dazzlingly rich. If, as Frost habitually does, we were to conjure up a fully-fleshed intent behind this simple condition, perhaps we would guess that a scene of scraped land and "forty cellar holes" is more than enough grist for Frost's mill, and anything else would call for poetic fireworks that would overshadow his theme....   [tags: Robert Frost Directive Essays]

Powerful Essays
774 words (2.2 pages)

Analysis of Robert Frost's Desert Places Essay

- Analysis of Robert Frost's Desert Places Robert Frost's 'Desert Places' is a testament to the harrowing nature of solidarity. By subjecting the narrator to the final moments of daylight on a snowy evening, an understanding about the nature of blank spaces and emptiness becomes guratively illuminated. The poem's loneliness has the ability to transcend nature and drill a hole through the mind of the narrator so that all hope for relationships with man and nature are abandoned. In the first stanza, ?snow....   [tags: Robert Frost Desert Places Essays]

Powerful Essays
1234 words (3.5 pages)

Robert Frost's Design Essay

- Robert Frost's Design Robert Frost outlines an ironic and disturbing situation involving a flower, a spider, and a moth in his poem "Design". The poem's text suggests the possibility of an absence of a god, but does no more than simply beg the question, for Frost's speaker does not offer the answer....   [tags: Robert Frost Poetry Design]

Powerful Essays
1164 words (3.3 pages)

Robert Frost Essay

- Robert Frost      Robert Frost, an Americian poet of the late 19th century, used nature in many of his writings. This paper will discuss the thought process of Frost during his writings, the many tools which he used, and provide two examples of his works.      Robert Frost was born in San Franciso on March 26, 1874, but later moved to Lawrence, Massachuschusetts (after his father died) where he did most of his writing. He was a simple man who taught, worked in a mill, was a reporter, was a New England farmer, and wrote....   [tags: Robert Frost Poet Poems Essays]

Powerful Essays
1232 words (3.5 pages)