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Symbolism of the Journey

Essay by   •  February 28, 2013  •  Essay  •  495 Words (2 Pages)  •  1,412 Views

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Symbolism of the Journey

Thesis: Symbolism of the journey describes the great journey that all of us must one day take. That journey leads us onto many roads, but usually there are two roads that lead us to life or death. There is always a struggle in everything that divides us between life and death. The choice that we choose is the "great choice" that leads us to one or the other. That is what is found in the poetry and story of both "Road Not Taken" by Robert Frost and "I Used to Live Here" by Jean Rhys.

What we see, what is, what is to come

What we see on the symbolism of journey lies in what it is that we see in the now. The now that is described in "The Road Not Taken" is the yellow road that the traveler has two roads. The character seems to want to have his/her cake and eat it, too. The want to have mortal life, yet be able to explore after life, only to return to mortal life to find more appreciation for it.

The first stanza introduces the reader to the crossroad decision the author has to make. "Two roads diverged in a yellow wood" signifies the forethought of the results of his decision. Although one may like to see the outcomes of both paths, only one may be chosen in life. The author looks down both choices, seeing only until the road took a bend. In our own lives we are allowed limited vision of what are decisions and choices will become. We are often not afforded the luxury of being able to look out into the far future to see the far reaching ripple affects our choices become.

The second stanza is where the author decides to go on the path less traveled. This is where he speaks of having worn both roads equally the same. When one has truly made up his/her mind about a decision to make and have played out both consequences as far reaching as possible, then they too have worn both roads equally the same.

The powerful thoughts of regret can make one wonder about other roads in life not taken, and yet we must be okay with our choices. There is no way to go back and change the past, for it is already written. Yet, Robert Frost wonders in the third stanza about "wanting to keep the first for another day". It is odd that he wouldn't mind saving his other decision, and yet he doubts he would ever return to the same choice.

In the final stanza, Robert speaks of him "telling this with a sigh" and the sigh could be that of regret, or maybe even a sense of relief. The line "...and that has made all the difference", seems to indicate resignation and lessons learned.

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