Analysis of Robert Frost”s “An Old Man’s Winter Night”

This essay has been submitted by a student. This is not an example of the work written by professional essay writers.

28 November 2021

Remember! This is just a sample.

You can get your custom paper by one of our expert writers.

Get custom essay

98 writers online

What is the objective in a poem? Why do writers write? Most poems are an attempt to move on a message, to give an ethical, or in any case, to speak in a method or one other. An instance of a writer doing this in a poem may be seen in An Old Man’s Winter Night, by Robert Frost. Robert Frost (1874-1963) wrote An Old Man’s Winter Night, perhaps his most properly conceived work and published it in the guide ‘Mountain Interval’, released in 1920 as a fantastic peak to his career.

The poem tells the story of the last night earlier than an old man’s dying. This man is portrayed as being lonely, and without that means to anybody aside from himself. The old man seems to understand this in a sure point in the poem, and decides that he now not desires to stay. He then goes to sleep, nevertheless quickly after he’s disturbed by the shifting of a log.

He then shifts, because the log did, and dies seemingly without ache, “still sleeping” as Frost says. The poem appears to have a message to transmit, which can be unveiled through some shut reading. There are a number of causes which convince the reader that An Old Man’s Winter Night is memorable, impressive, and effectively passes on an ethical.

Firstly, the reader is engaged into the scene with no details about the old man, which parallels the old man’s scenario, as neither does he understand how he has turn into what he is: “What saved him from remembering what it was / That brought him to that creaking room was age.

” Perhaps this was carried out to make the reader simply as misplaced as the old man and in a place to enter more deeply into the old man’s character, thus being ready to sympathize higher with him. The old man appears to be lacking any curiosity in a long life and apparently has no real social life. This lack of associates is what attracts us to really feel for the person who clearly was not cared for in life, either as a outcome of a refusal to look after others, or as a result of different unjustly neglected him. The man’s meaningless existence is accentuated by him continuously scaring away what seems to frighten him or makes him uncomfortable. However, the old man seems to be apathetic in the course of his own state.

The proven truth that he doesn’t even know the way he received to be so within the first place adds to this notion, and makes him appear indifferent from his own state of affairs. Another issue which makes the vacancy more obvious is the “barrels spherical him”. One could wonder: “What is in these barrels?” As Frost does not inform us what they’re, we might assume that they’re empty barrels, very related to the lifetime of the man. Another factor which adds to the void of the man’s life is that the author uses possessive adjectives showing that the snow on the roof is “his” and that the icicles hanging along the wall are “his”. The reader might assume that there should be an infinite lack of subsistence to the man’s life for Frost to tell us that these utterly insignificant matters are possessed by him. Overall, the reader pities the old man for his seemingly lonely, purportless, and miserable existence.

Secondly, in An Old Man’s Winter Night, Frost has artistically created metaphors with mild which are overflowing with meanings that can easily be missed and yet assist in drawing the poem along with a sense of cohesion. “What stored his eyes from giving again the gaze / Was the lamp tilted near them in his hand.” This helps one to understand the best way the man is feeling, albeit it in a minor means and in turn aids one in figuring out what he is doing. He isn’t sitting idly, however has a lamp, therefore is not making an attempt to sleep. We usually are not instructed additional as to what he’s trying to do nevertheless it clearly requires thought. He can not address this psychological surge as his age has drawn senility, “What kept him from remembering what it was / That introduced him to that creaking room was age.” Frost tells us early within the poem that he was gentle “to nobody however himself.” This informs us that he’s the one one that’s in touch with himself and his existence.

This light he is to himself and the light he holds in his hand work collectively to make his isolation much more obvious, as a outcome of the sunshine that he holds is making him unable to see the skin. For him to have the power to see outside he could merely have tilted the sunshine in direction of the window, yet, one could understand that this metaphor reveals that he’s either unwilling to confide in others, or is afraid of what he might then see. He could have been intimidated by the outside which “looked darkly in at him”. This continues with the idea that he was solely a light to himself because in tilting the light in path of himself, he sees his reflection in the window rather than what might have been beyond the window. However, had he illuminated them so that he could see exterior, they’d no longer be darkly trying in at him. Frost then writes: “A quiet light, and then not even that.” One might speculate from this line that Frost is telling us that even the old man has lost contact with himself, and now not cares about his own existence.

Frost might presumably be calling our consideration to this line with the eye-rhyme between “what” and “that”. In the subsequent few traces, the old man dies: “The log that shifted with a jolt / Once within the range, disturbed him and he shifted, / And eased his heavy breathing, however nonetheless slept.” Perhaps the log shifting, breaking, and going out represented his gentle permanently going out as properly. This hyperlink may be made with the repetition of the word “shifted”; the log shifts, and then the person shifts. In these traces there’s additionally alliteration with the phrases “still slept”. Frost may have been drawing our attention to this to make sure that the death of the old man would have a strong influence on the reader. These lines are spectacular and efficient at expressing the death of the old man, and depart the reader feeling sorry for him.

Thirdly, one could respect how clear the final moral is of the poem. “One aged man — one man — can’t keep a home, / A farm, a countryside, or if he can, / It’s thus he does it of a winter evening.” Frost generalizes the scenario, by broadening “one aged man” to “one man”. He resumes the whole story, giving the reader a clear moral at the end, identifiable to all because of the generalization. One may consider that, finally, Frost is making an attempt to point out one how not to find yourself, and the way not to die, but provides no insight as to the higher means of ending the spell one spends on Earth. Perhaps he is telling us to ensure that we do not end up like this man, and that we must always “tilt the light” in the path of others as a substitute of ourselves, and therefore to be in contact with others.

Furthermore, it’s telling us that if we do not open up towards others, and if we stay inside our own shell, with our icicles on the partitions and our snow on high, isolating us from the surface world, that we will end up in solitude and be a lightweight to no one however ourselves, similar to the old man. It could additionally be out of context to marvel if this poem relates to the poet in any way, however it does seem rather in depth for any creativeness. However, as Robert Frost was not a very lonely man, perhaps he was expressing an excellent fear of his introduced forth by an incident in his environment.

As one may now see, there are several elements of the poem which make An Old Man’s Winter Night memorable and effective in transmitting the author’s message. These features are: the reader is engaged into the scene with no details about the old man; metaphors which Frost has made with gentle are overflowing with many meanings; one might recognize how clear the poem is fairly clear due to the generalization and how the whole of the poem totally contributes to the moral. This poem transmits its concept superbly and majestically making its goal of communication achieved.

Cite this page

Analysis of Robert Frost”s “An Old Man’s Winter Night”. (28 November 2021). Retrieved from

"Analysis of Robert Frost”s “An Old Man’s Winter Night”" StudyScroll, 28 November 2021,

StudyScroll. (2021). Analysis of Robert Frost”s “An Old Man’s Winter Night” [Online]. Available at: [Accessed: 4 June, 2023]

"Analysis of Robert Frost”s “An Old Man’s Winter Night”" StudyScroll, Nov 28, 2021. Accessed Jun 4, 2023.

"Analysis of Robert Frost”s “An Old Man’s Winter Night”" StudyScroll, Nov 28, 2021.

"Analysis of Robert Frost”s “An Old Man’s Winter Night”" StudyScroll, 28-Nov-2021. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 4-Jun-2023]

StudyScroll. (2021). Analysis of Robert Frost”s “An Old Man’s Winter Night”. [Online]. Available at: [Accessed: 4-Jun-2023]

Don't use plagiarized sources. Get your custom essay..

get custom paper

We use cookies to personalyze your web-site experience. By continuing we’ll assume you board with our cookie policy.