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Are you a poetry reader or do you find it hard to understand? Unlike short stories or novels poems are short and to the point, just enough to capture your attention. All poems are different with different meanings and different images. One famous poet is Robert Frost who seems to enjoy capturing more natural settings. He was born in 1874, in San Francisco, but later moved to Massachusetts, where after high school he married Elinor White. His first book A Boys Will, was published in 1913 and his second; North of Boston, was published in 1914. Frost received many awards including 4 Pulitzer Prizes, honorary degrees, and the Bollingen Poetry Prize. Even though he was a very successful poet things seemed to go downhill fast after the death of his wife, three of his children, and his sister. It is said that after this “he later struggled with the decline of his poetic powers,” (DiYanni, 668). Readers can see the depression, bitterness, and loneliness of Frost’s life within his poems. He died in 1963 at the age of 87. Frost uses the imagery of nature and symbolism to convey the deeper meaning of his poetry.
The nature settings in Frost’s poetry bring them to life and draw the reader in to more of an everyday style. His technique of writing and descriptiveness makes his poetry so intriguing. Some of the ways Frost describes these natural settings kind of make you want to look at the world around you differently, in a more beautiful sense. When reading Frost’s poems his visual settings are always in a seasonal sense and you could almost see the sensory that is around him. His poem “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” is a perfect example of a winter setting. The title itself allows you to start picturing a dim, white, evening like setting. The descriptiveness of this poem is one to easily picture for those that could understand it. While reading through it you can sort of just put yourself into his world by the choice of descriptive words with a natural setting twist. You can picture him above the horse, in front of a small cottage, in the middle of the gloomy woods, with the lovely white snow all around to give the poem a heavy, but peaceful feeling. “The Tuft of Flowers” is another poem with a beautiful visual image, although it is different because it seems to be set around a happier time, like spring.
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Frost’s poems don’t just have natural settings; they also secrete a deeper symbolic meaning. When reading Frost’s poems you could almost tell that he was over coming many emotional struggles on his life; which I believe were also used as inspiration to his poems by expressing the different seasons of the year. Also being tied into his wonderful description of imagery you can tell how he started to deal with heartache. As he first started to write his poems they were generally full of delight and life, set around the spring time. For example was his poem “The Tuft of Flowers”, that he wrote in 1913. Then as things began to go downhill so did his poems to a more fall like setting, like his poem “A Road Not Taken”; written in 1916. Eventually Frost came to a more bitter, dim, depressing setting such as winter, like his poem “Stopping by Woods On a Snowy Evening”; written in 1923. Some of his poems also seized a deeper meaning of loneliness and human emotional struggle. Take his poem “Acquainted with the Night” for example because its implication has to do with him finding himself falling fast into sadness. In this poem I believe that the word night is used to symbolize depression and how he is dealing with all of these struggles alone. The verse “I have walked out in the rain – and back in the rain” (pg. 685) is mentioned to let his readers know of how he is going down the same depressing path as once before.
Robert Frost seems to be a writer that uses a lot of day to day and personal problems to create his poetry. A similar theme that he comes across with some of his poetry is human emotional struggle; considering how much he went through throughout his lifetime. His vast sense of imagery and Mother Nature draws the reader in; which is what he wants because in his poems there is a lot more than meets the eye. Under all of those descriptive images is a deeper symbolic meaning to every poem. Throughout Frost’s life he experienced a great deal of loss, loneliness, and depression. As most people he had his ups and his downs, which I believe he used, to some extent as a guideline to writing his poetry to really connect his life with the readers. His poems seem to compact a seasonal image with spring for the ups, fall as if he were on a road to emotional breakdown, and winter when his loneliness and depression hit. Although Frost went through his hard times he still bounced back to be successful from all of the beautiful poetry he has written.