I'm reminded of his most well-known work The Road Less Traveled wherein the protagonist encounters a fork in the road, takes the road which appears less traveled by, and this decision made all the difference. It's a feel good, do your own thing, sort of message.
I had a creepy old English professor who explained that this is not in fact the meaning of the poem. Robert Frost was, apparently, being "ironic" when he said this. His actual message was that it makes no difference which path one takes. Nothing you do matters. Life is meaningless.
So I looked it up. The keyboard intellectuals on the internet are in full agreement with this pederast English professor. "Dude! Of course Robert Frost was being ironic. YOU MORON!"
Let's look at the poem.
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood and Ió
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Where's the irony? Is this really "America's least understood poem"? It's straight-forward. If his message was "we live in an uncaring universe and your life has no meaning" he should have wrote that. That would have been clear.
Irony is a legitimate literary technique. I can appreciate it. Typically, there's humour involved. Where's the humour in "Nothing you do matters"?
Naturally, not everybody understands irony. That adds to the humour. "Take a look at this doofus, who didn't get the joke." Or "Gee, what a clever guy I am. I got the joke." But again, there's no joke in the alleged "irony" in this poem.
Wikipedia tells us that Robert Frost wrote this poem for his friend Edward Thomas, who was a British writer and poet. A man writing a poem for another man. Nothing gay about that.
See? That's irony. I'm making a joke. Of course it's gay for a man to write poetry for another man. And by saying the opposite, I'm raising the level of intellectual discourse.
Anyway, it would seem that Edward Thomas was so moved by The Road Less Traveled that he enlisted in the army. This is all the more significant because World War I was going on at the time. He died two years later in the trenches.
Edward Thomas was about 37 years old when he enlisted. He was a writer and poet. He knew all the literary techniques. Apparently, he didn't see the poem as "ironic". A 37 year old man does not typically enlist in the army. He took the poem literally. He did the opposite of what a normal person would do because he was inspired by the poem.
Obviously, a gay man is going to be more emotional and hence more easily swayed by something like a poem. But he saw "Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference" and saw that as a sign to go fight the Kaiser. Do something different. Be a badass.
Don't get me wrong. I think that the poem is gay. I can't think of any heterosexual poetry, for that matter. But there's no way that it's "ironic". Irony is funny. The alleged irony of this poem isn't funny. And if a contemporary of Robert Frost, who was also a poet, couldn't see any "irony" in the poem, why do the "intellectuals" of today disagree?
Let's look at another Robert Frost "classic": The Fog.
The fog comes
on little cat feet.
It sits looking
over harbor and city
on silent haunches
and then moves on.
Was that wacky bastard being "ironic" again? Was he actually talking about a dog?
He couldn't even bother to make this one rhyme. It's shit. It means nothing.
This is why people don't like poetry and why the profession died about a 100 years ago. It's artless garbage that cretins ascribe a deeper meaning to. "Oh, these cat feet represent oppression...or the complete opposite. He was just being ironic".
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