Comparison of Settings in Robert Frost's 'Desert Places' and 'Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening'

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Robert Frost created two poems that allow the reader to journey through winter. They contain very different tones, but share the same setting. “Desert Places” expresses a state of depression and loneliness, while “Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” expresses appreciated solitude. The comparison and contrast of these two poems is a great example of how the same setting affects each person differently depending on their attitude and mindset. “Desert Places” is the story of a man wandering alone through the woods on a wintry evening. He is filled with feelings of complete isolation and loneliness. The snow-covered field is viewed by the speaker as a desert place. “A blanker whiteness of benighted snow with no expression, nothing to express” (lines 11-12). The “whiteness” described in this *quote* symbolizes empty and open spaces. The “whiteness” also refers to the snow, as if it is a white blanket that covers up everything living. Frost uses the blankness to describe the emptiness that the speaker feels. The speaker seems to feel as if there is nothing else left around him except for the unfeeling snow and the lonely thoughts that fill his head. “The woods around it have it – it is theirs” (line 5). The woods symbolize people and society. They belong to something and they have something that belongs to them. They are able to feel as though they are a part of something. The woods have its own place in nature and play a part of a much bigger picture. The speaker feels so alone inside and as though he does not belong to a part of anything. Nature has a way of involving everything and everyone and they all act as one. The animals of the forest are also involved in this winter scene. “All animals are smothered in their lairs, I am too absent spirited to count” (lines 6-7). Snow’s blanket of whiteness coats everything, and leaves the speaker with

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