Transcendental Pull And Materialistic Counter-Pull In Frost'S A Boy'S Will

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Frost’s very first volume of poetry A Boy’s Will (1913) brought him fame. Though it came out in 1913, Frost once wrote to William Stanley Braithwaite about A Boy’s Will, as “an expression of my life for the ten years from eighteen on when I thought I greatly preferred stocks and stones to people” (Selected Letters of Robert Frost.158). The book was first published in London as at that time he was in England to pursue his career as a poet leaving his farming career in New England. And in America it was published in 1915. The volume was highly praised in England and Ezra Pound with whom Frost had an acquaintance there, wrote a commendable review of that book. Not only that Pound also reported W. B. Yeats, one of Frost’s favourites, praised by saying that A Boy’s Will was “the best poetry written in America for a longtime” (Homage to Robert Frost 98). The book contains many characteristic features of Frost’s poetry which are to come again and again in the volumes to come. Most of the poems represent a melancholy, lonely narrator. The speaker and the poet are not the same person. The narrator is a separate entity who responds to the world around him in a distinct way. He is independent, lonely and sensitive and longing for companionship. He is also responsive to nature and to its seasonal changes. There is also the presence of a dilemma in the mind of the character between the transcendental and material forces working around him. The language used by Frost is simple and conversational though lyrical in tone. There is also evidence of occasional use of archaic poetic diction. The opening poem of A Boy’s Will “Into My Own” considers the dilemma in the mind of the speaker or the youth between the imaginative world of transcendence and the world of reality. The speaker wishes that he would like to ‘steal away’ into the vastness of ‘those dark trees . . . stretched

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