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 marked 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 I, I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference.
The symbolism of two roads diverging in the autumn woods is clear. It is about decisions made during the journey through life. The poet, being an usual person, he is a poet, doesn’t go along the path most taken. The poet has gone his own way and that made him the unique figure that most poets are. The metaphor of life as a tangled forest feels comfortable to most people. Mostly, people don’t know where they are going and certainly not how to get there. Most people just follow the crowd because they feel more secure with people around them. Setting the poem in the autumn makes the discussion more weighty and sobering. Winter is coming and everyone has to be prepared for the worst. The traveler has to find a proper shelter or die of the cold. A person has thus no option other than making a definitive decision and walking quickly upon his chosen path. Being confused to a standstill only leads to an earlier death.