Mountain Interval by Robert Frost

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"I Took The One Less Traveled By, And That Has Made All The Difference"

(Magill's Quotations in Context)

Context: The poet tells how one day in his life he came to where "Two roads diverged in a yellow wood." He was sorry he could not go on both. He gazed down one as far as he could, "To where it bent in the undergrowth." But he took the other road which was not quite as well worn as the first. He felt that he might return sometime to try the one down which he had first gazed. But into this fantasy, common sense intrudes and tells him that he probably can never come back. As a consequence of this decision between the two alternatives, his life was forever changed. He sums up his feeling in the last stanza:

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.