Robert Frost is the poet of the famous poem ‘Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening’. Here is given a summary of the poem along with a short analysis of the poem. Question answers of the Class 7 Wind chimes book are also provided here.
The poet recounts a winter journey on a horse-driven cart, during which he comes across a property surrounded by woods and a frozen lake. His horse is curious about the unscheduled stop and shakes the harness to alert the poet. The only sound to be heard is the wind and the bell on the harness. Ultimately, the poet decides to continue on his journey towards his intended destination.
A. Answer these questions with reference to the context.
- His house is in the village though;
He will not see me stopping here
a. Who is the speaker?
b. Whose house is in the village?
c. Where has the speaker stopped?
d. Who is with the speaker?
- My little horse must think it queer
a. Whose little horse is being referred to here?
b. Where are the speaker and the horse?
c. What must the horse find queer?
d. Compare the response of the horse and that of the traveller.
- He gives his harness bells a shake
To ask if there is some mistake.
The only other sound’s the sweep
Of easy wind and downy flake.
a. Who gives his harness bells a shake?
b. Why does ‘he’ think there is some mistake?
c. Where is ‘he’?
d. What can we infer about the weather from these lines?
- a. The poet.
b. The house is of the person whose woods the speaker is passing through.
c. He has stopped in the woods.
d. The speaker is accompanied by his horse.
- a. The poet’s horse is being referred here.
b. They are passing through the woods.
c. The horse found it queer for the speaker to stop by the woods on a snowy evening.
d. While the horse finds it queer or strange that the speaker has stopped by the woods on a snowy
evening, the speaker is oblivious to the time and the climate. He is charmed by the beauty of
- a. The horse gives his harness bells a shake.
b. He thinks that his master has stopped by the woods because of some mistake.
c. He is with his master in woods.
d. The weather is cold and ‘downy flake’ suggests that it has begun to snow.
B. Answer these questions.
- Where did the speaker reach while he was travelling?
- Why wouldn’t the owner of the woods see the speaker?
- Which season was the speaker travelling in?
- Where did the speaker make his horse stop?
- How did the horse communicate with the speaker?
- What was the only other sound audible to the speaker?
- Why would the horse find it strange that the speaker stopped there?
- What does the word ‘sleep’ suggest in the poem?
- Explain the meaning of the lines:
The woods are lovely, dark and deep
But I have promises to keep
And miles to go before I sleep…
- While travelling, the speaker arrived at a frozen lake bordered by woods.
- Snowfall and the approaching evening made it apparent that the woods’ owner was not present.
- It is currently winter.
- The speaker halted his horse amidst the woods by the frozen lake.
- The horse signaled to its master through the harness bells, expressing confusion about stopping on a chilly, snowy evening.
- The sole sounds perceptible to the speaker were the rustling wind and the falling snowflakes.
- The horse found it odd that its master chose to pause by the woods during the dark, snowy weather, rather than proceeding to their destination.
- The word “sleep” is used in the final stanza of the poem to suggest the speaker’s desire to stay in the woods, to rest and to give in to the temptation to stay in this peaceful and quiet place.
The repetition of the final line “And miles to go before I sleep” emphasizes the speaker’s sense of duty and responsibility, and his need to move on despite his desire to stay in the peaceful and restful environment of the woods.
In short, the word “sleep” in this poem suggests a desire for rest and peace, as well as a sense of longing for a simpler and more peaceful life.
- The woods have charmed the speaker and drawn him in. On a dark winter evening, instead of journeying on, the speaker pauses with his horse to bask in the woods’ beauty. However, the speaker is quickly reminded that, though the woods may be lovely, dark, and deep, he cannot linger there. The woods serve as a metaphor for death, a reminder that the speaker has much to accomplish before his own time comes to rest. Life is fleeting, and it is easy to overlook the beauty that surrounds us.
A. What do the woods symbolise in the poem?
Ans. The woods appear attractive in the poem. They are restful, lovely, dark, like oblivion. They symbolize death.
B. Identify the lines where alliteration is used in the poem.
Ans. There are several examples of alliteration in the poem:
- whose woods
- his house
- watch his woods fill up with
- he gives his harness
- dark and deep
C. Comment on the rhyme scheme of the poem. What effect does it have on the readers
Ans. The rhyme scheme of the poem is aaba bbcb ccdc dddd. All the lines flow, suggesting a continuation of life.
The use of rhyming words is crucial in this poem as they convey the opposing themes of moving on (progression) and stopping (cessation), which are central to the poem’s message. However, the third line in the first three stanzas does not rhyme with the opening two lines or the last line, creating a temporary obstacle that disrupts the poem’s flow. Nevertheless, this third line serves as a connecting link between the stanzas, providing momentum to the poem..