Robert Frost came up with this poem titled "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" in 1922. It was published a year after. Actually, Frost started by writing a long poem titled "New Hampshire" all through a single night while staying in his house in Shaftsbury, Vermont. Before he could finish writing, the morning had arrived. He went out to catch a glimpse of the sunrise and all of a sudden, he stumbled upon the idea of composing the next poem, "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening".
The poem Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening is written in 4 stanzas with each of them having 4 lines. This is known as a "quatrain" format in the literary world. The poem is also written in iambic tetrameter. The term "tetrameter" is a line of poetry that contains four feet. There’s also a unique rhyming scheme noticed in all the stanzas.
Meaning & Summary
The poem portrays the speaker’s momentary encounter with natural phenomena. Actually, there’s no clue regarding the actual gender of the speaker in the poem. However, the poet could be likened to be the speaker. He wondered at the beauty of natural scenes and tried to decode some meanings from them. He looked at the woods and remembered his childhood experience when he observed snow piling up.
In any case, there are several meanings that can be derived from the poem. The woods represent opportunities that can be explored or risks that can be taken. They also signify the diverse mysteries that denote human life. Among such mysteries include sexual appetite, death and afterlife reality. That notwithstanding; the woods are also very lovely.
Moreover the traveler in the poem also considers the woods to represent ordinary beautiful people who are normally ignored in life. The woods are also seen in the poem as symbols of the vanishing wilderness which is turned to parking lots, highways, cities, shopping malls and railroads.
Furthermore, the woods according to another interpretation represent death. The speaker desires to enter the woods. That means he really wants to end his life. He may commit suicide if he wants.
In any case, one thing is very clear from the poem! The writer’s subconscious mind was actually speaking to him all through. It revealed his desires and thoughts which his conscious mind could not fathom.