Category Archives: Frost (Robert)

Captain Nemo Invades New England

Snowstorm Nemo set in conjunction with Joyce’s “The Dead” leads to some interesting reflections.

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The Road Less Traveled? Nope

Perhaps some entrepreneurs need to believe their success is solely due to their own efforts, as Bounderby, Willy Loman, and the speaker of “The Road Not Taken” do.

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Growing More Liberal as We Age

Frost may allude to the belief that we become more conservative as we age, but his own poetry refutes the claim.

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Meaning Is the Meaning of the Liberal Arts

When Frost’s tree falls in front of us, it can mean two things (at least). Literally, it’s a hassle. To the unexamined life, that’s all it will ever be. Get down and clear it away. On the other hand, there’s that question of meaning and where it comes from. Human beings do their best when their actions are invested with significance. That’s why we have ceremonies, like this one, to compel us to stop (because time itself doesn’t do so on its own), take some time, reflect on the significance of what is happening to us.

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What to Make of a Diminished Peyton

Sports Saturday “The question that he frames in all but words,” Robert Frost writes in his “Ovenbird” sonnet, “is what to make of a diminished thing.”  This poem has always had a special place in my heart. The ovenbird is not a bird that sings when June is bustin’ out all over. Rather, it is […]

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Essay Grading and the Great Wall of China

At this time of year, I sometimes wonder why I signed up for this gig. Stacks of ungraded essays are strewn “far and wee” across my study, and only the knowledge that I have completed my student essays in the past assures me that I will make it through this batch. In my hour of […]

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Fences, Good Neighbors, and Immigration

Will America’s most famous poem about fences give us any insight into the border problems we are currently experiencing with Mexico? Let’s take a look at it and find out. The poem I have in mind is, of course, Robert Frost’s “Mending Wall.” Here it is:

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Our Most Famous (and Most Misread) Poem

  Today I walk into my first classes after a year of sabbatical.  After having spent all day Friday meeting with new entering students and hearing about their  momentous decision (as they see it) to attend St. Mary’s, it makes sense for me to write on decision making. In what is arguably America’s most famous poem is about […]

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The Favorite Books of American Presidents

I’ve had fun discussing the reading of Sonia Sotomayor and Clarence Thomas over the last couple of days, and while I’ve come up dry on further posts about the Supreme Court and literature, it has given me the idea of periodically dipping into reading stories of other political figures. I’ll start a list here, beginning […]

Also posted in Alexander (Elizabeth), Angelou (Maya), Bible, Camus (Albert), Carle (Eric), Dickey (James), Fleming (Ian), Marquez (Gabriel Garcia), Morrison (Toni), O'Neill (Joseph), Robinson (Edward Arlington), Service (Robert), Sheridan (Richard), Stendahl, Tolstoy (Leo), Twain (Mark) | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments closed

After Apple-Picking, Then What?

So much of the poetry that comforts us in time of death is infused with images of nature, poems like (in my case) Mary Oliver’s “Lost Children,” Percy Bysshe Shelley’s Adonais, and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. Perhaps the reason is that, with death, our natural side asserts its primacy in a way that cannot […]

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