What does "a resting-place" signify in the poem "Uphill"?

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In the poem "Uphill," "a resting-place" literally means an inn or a hotel where a traveler can spend the night. Metaphorically, it refers to heaven.

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Christina Rossetti’s poem “Uphill" may be read literally as a set of questions and answers that a traveler is asking another, more experienced person about a journey they have started or will soon be taking. The poem can also be interpreted as an extended metaphor for the voyage of life.

In the first stanza, the questioner is asking about the steep road they must climb in a single day’s journey. The second stanza turns to an inquiry about the “resting-place,” as the questioner wants to know if they will find “a roof” or shelter. They ask as well whether they will easily recognize it or if it might be hidden by the “darkness.” The respondent tells them, “You cannot miss that inn.”

If one interprets the poem as pertaining to the progress of life rather than an actual journey, the single day of the journey becomes the whole life course. Likewise, the “resting-place” becomes the destination that one reaches at the end of life. The “darkness” can be interpreted as any event during life that would lead one away from the path of virtue. The respondent is reassuring the questioner that they will stay the course and not veer off into bad deeds and that, by doing so, they will arrive at the “inn,” meaning heaven.

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