What is the plot of the poem "The Road Not Taken"?

Expert Answers
litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This poem by Robert Frost is about a person walking in the woods.  He stops when he sees that the road turns into two roads.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

The speaker stands there for a long time, looking into the distance.  He is trying to see where the road ends.  He cannot see it because of the thick underbrush.  Since he does not know where either road ends, he does not know which one to take.  He cannot split himself into two people and take both roads.

One of the two roads is grassy and it does not look like people take the path very often.  The other one is well-worn.  However, on this morning both paths are covered in leaves.

And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.

Since the speaker is the first one to travel there this day, he has to choose.  He thinks of trying one and coming back to try the other another day, but he knows he’ll be busy and probably never come back.  Thus, he has to choose.

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

The speaker chooses the road not many people have gone on.  He says that this has had a great impact on his life.  Whether you think this is a positive or negative impact is up to the reader!