This is the best poem I've ever read, heard or felt. I'd read this poem in class 11th for the Ist time and I felt an inspirational and motivational energy. really this is one of the best poems for them who lead to astray in my opinion.
Sometimes we don't know without a doubt the meaning of a poem (or of a piece of beautiful prose) . But we know that it becomes a part of the music of our life, that it strikes a chord within us. I watched a Vietnamese man recite this poem for Anthony Bourdain on Parts Unknown because, I think, he felt it represented America. He obviously loved it. It was touching for me; I understood how this poem affected him, as it has me, and I saw how a poem can bring people from distant places together.
This may be disrespectful to those who worship Frost but in my opinion he was a master of solipsistic doggerel. Whether mending walls, or taking a road or riding in a snowy forest, he imports to the mundane a seeming profundity which is quite laughable. Earlier I had recounted the experience related from the point of view of the poor horse who bore him that night; literally bearing a bore. I have named the horse Dobbin.
Yes, says Dobbin, his language clear,
This poltroon on my back
He's more than a little queer
It's alright for him, notebook in hand
To pen his boring verse
But it is me, without a rug
Who in snow is left standing here!
My hooves and shanks
They are freeziing cold
Why must I be his horse?
It was pain enough,
While he, again
Notepad and pen in hand
Deliberated on his choice of road
But this night is even worse
Why is the ownership of the woods and the owner not seeing the author standing and admiring them so important? The whole of the first verse is devoted to this topic. I don't think explanations about fulfilling responsibilities till death, etc, explain this. Could it be that the beautiful woods are symbolic of another man's alluring wife? The rest of the poem then starts falling into place.
The first verse the author doesn't want to be seen admiring another's wife.
Second verse he is standing between the beckoning woods and a frozen lake (what his marriage has become)
The harness bells are his conscience ringing compared to the gentle easy wind and downy flake of forbidden love.
He is offered solace in the lovely dark deep embrace of the woods but he has made his wedding vows to stay faithful till death releases him.
That first verse is a loaded with suspicion and cunning though. It is very weird that if you consider the woods as being a metaphor for a woman it is almost the mirror image of the story of the start of the David and Bathsheba story. See Second Samuel Chapter 11 Verses 2,3 and 4.