What Is the Theme of “The Road Not Taken”?

The theme of Robert Frost’s poem, “The Road Not Taken,” centers around the narrator being faced with two choices and making a decision of which is best. The speaker in the poem talks of coming upon two roads and having to decide which one to take. Whether the roads are literal or represent a fork in the road of life, similarities exist in the decision-making process.

The speaker says early on that he regrets not being able to travel down both roads. Many times in life, two choices seems equally attractive, making the choice of which to take that much harder. The speaker sees no real indication of what potentially makes one road better than the other, and he even says that he is keeping the path not chosen for another day. He acknowledges, however, that the opportunity to go back and take that untraveled path rarely presents itself. Once a life’s course is chosen, one does not often have the chance to go back and start again, at least not as the same person he once was. According to Humanities 360.com, readers do not know for sure whether the poet speaks of two literal roads or of a particular decision in life, but the speaker in the poem does seem to know that there is importance in the choice he makes. In the last lines, he says that he expects to tell this story in the future “with a sigh.” He also expects to feel that his choice to take the less traveled road made a difference in his life.