Thursday, April 27, 2017

For National Poetry Month: Robert Frost



During a Facetime chat yesterday with my daughter, Angela, she passed a statue of Robert Frost on the campus of Dartmouth College.  I decided at that point that I 'd found my subject for National Poetry Month. Because when I think of poetry, I think of Robert Frost.  He was one of the first poets I studied (to some extent) in school.  I asked Angela to send me a better photo than the screen shots I took during our Facetime, and today she texted me this beautiful photo, taken by her boyfriend, Matt (because she was in lab until 8 PM), of the bronze statue of Robert Frost by sculptor George W. Lundeen. Thank you, Angela and Matt!

Robert Lee Frost (March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963) was an American poet.  Born in San Francisco, CA, his family moved to Lawrence, MA, after his father died.  He graduated from high school in 1892, and attended Dartmouth for two months (he left college to work to help his family, and later attended Harvard for two years).  Frost felt that his true calling was poetry, and he sold his first poem, "My Butterfly. An Elegy", in 1894.  He married Elinor Miriam White in 1895, in Lawrence, and Frost became a prolific poet, who wrote poetry from his homes in various parts of New England (and later from England). He won four Pulitzer Prizes for poetry, as well as a Congressional Gold Medal in 1960.  Frost was named the poet laureate of Vermont in 1961.

When I think of Robert Frost, the poem that stands out in my mind is "Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening" (1922).  Isn't his name, Robert Frost, so perfect for a poet writing about the cold, frosty woods?!  He wrote the poem quickly one morning from his home in Shaftsbury, Vermont, after watching a sunrise, having stayed up all night to work on a long poem, "New Hampshire" (which should maybe be underlined, due to its length).  If you've ever been to New England and have walked in the woods, you'll agree that this poem captures the essence of the woods.  The last stanza is etched in my memory from my schooldays.  Perhaps you remember it as well. 


Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening
 
Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;
He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.

My little horse must think it queer
To stop without a farmhouse near
Between the woods and frozen lake
The darkest evening of the year.

He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound's the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.

The woods are lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.




I've added this post to Savvy Verse & Wit's special Mister Linky for National Poetry Month. Thank you, Serena!

Happy National Poetry Month!  As always, your comments are welcomed.

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