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;
Robert Frost touches my heart every time I read this verse that first penetrated my thoughts when I was slightly young to absorb its significance. I have been standing at the crossroads all my life. You have been there too; that moment when there are two roads right before you and you’ve got to make a choice. You have to make a hard-hitting decision prior to moving ahead on your way. Choices are complicated. Choices hold on to you step by step, moment by moment; they can haunt you for every split second of your life. I stand here today, brainstorming my intellect, daring up to my heart and introspecting with all the might: Which road do I take? I bend down to stare at the probable up-shots of my choices; however, I can’t gaze at any of it after a point.
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,
When I come across both these pathways, I know they are green but thorny. They are worn out and intricate; but one of these appears vaguely undemanding and plain to move on to. My sentiments shuttle in the midst of this exigency where I am supposed to take a step, to chase the right path; the path that my spirit gives a nod to.
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.
This morning, both these trails stretch out in front of me and I can equally mull over their simpler and gruelling facets. There is one that my wits push me to go for and then there’s another that my heart wishes to embrace. In spite of it all, I am standing at these crossroads, clutching tranquillity and fear at the same time. I am in the offing to make my choice. These paths might even concur in the future. My opinion might turn out to be ineffectual in the end; yet what I recognize at this instant is that choices are tough. You know that, my friend. The poet had the nerve to mark the easier path for some other day although he has qualms whether he would ever get to opt amid these two roads yet again. Situated at this peak, I cannot discern whether I have the courage to listen to my psyche and my soul or I would rather give in to the set notions, the fixed path and the ideal route.
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 travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.
With the closing stanza of this beautiful poem, I strive to look on the flip-side of the choices I have made all my life. There have been periods when I passed through the distinctive and intricate roads and there has been distress; there has been that flash when I pondered-‘What if I had taken the other path?’ My preferences have made me what and who I am and I love them, even today. You made your choices too, you were pleased about some, you were repentant of some others but you are here because of the course you selected.
I am not constantly convinced about my ideas, my decisions and my preferences. Things could have been poles apart. I could have been better-off. At the same time, I could have been a lot more thwarted and hollow. That’s what I hate: being hollow at the inside. If there’s hurting, let it be. If there are smiles, let it be. Except, if there’s a huge emptiness in your soul, it will perturb you for eternity.
I know it’s going to be okay in the end, regardless of the road I take; nevertheless, the one less travelled by will make the real difference. Being okay isn’t what I want and it isn’t what you want too. Things are okay even today, other than; I want them to be more gratifying regardless of the failure and the triumph. I want to be alive in every respect. I want to giggle and wail and smile and sob and fall down and get up and be successful and lose. I want to experience every sentiment put a dagger right through my heart so that when I reach the end, I can say to myself – ‘It was a life well-lived.’
The Road Not Taken will keep stimulating me with each word and each line it encompasses. The Road Not Taken will rejuvenate me to move ahead, to deliberate on my aspirations, to take on the drained and exhausting road, to have the mettle to follow my heart and to be satiated with every choice I make. Yet, at the moment, I am still at the intersection and choices are difficult. They truly are.