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.
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The poet is writing or sharing about one of his experiences, of a journey that he most probably had during the winter season. He is on his horse-driven cart and returning home. He stops near a property (of woods) and on the other side, there is a lake which is frozen because of the extremely cold weather. Meanwhile, the poet’s horse is surprised that his master has stopped at a strange place. It shakes the harness so that the bell may ring. The intention of the horse is to inform the poet if he has stopped here by mistake. Other than the bell of the harness, the poet can only hear the sound of the wind. At last, the poet decides that he must move to reach the destination which is the motive of his journey
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 is the speaker here.
b. The person whose woods the speaker is passing through has house in the village.
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…
1. As the speaker was travelling, he reached woods beside a frozen lake.
2. It was evening time and it was snowing. The owner of the woods lived in a village and was not around in the woods.
3. It is winter season.
4. The speaker made his horse stop between the woods near a frozen lake.
5. The horse communicated with his master by giving a shake to his harness bells. He thought it was a mistake that the master had stopped on a cold winter evening when it had begun to snow.
6. The only other sound audible to the speaker is the sweep of the wind and the sound of the falling snowflakes.
7. The horse thought that it was getting dark and it was snowing. Hence it was peculiar for his master to stop by the woods instead of travelling further and reaching his destination.
8. Attempt yourself
9. The speaker is charmed or attracted to the woods. It’s a dark winter evening and instead of travelling further, the speaker stops by the woods with this horse. While appreciating the beauty of the woods, he is reminded of the fact that the woods are lovely, dark and deep, but he can’t stand there and absorb the beauty. He has lots to do and places to go. It also means that the woods are symbolic of death (extended metaphor) but he has many tasks to accomplish before he goes to rest. Life is too short to appreciate the beauty around 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.
Rhyming words are very important in this poem as they contribute to the opposites of moving on or stopping, which is a major theme in the poem. The first three stanzas have the third line that does not rhyme with the opening two lines and the last. It creates a kind of obstacle, which temporarily stops the smooth flow of the poem. Yet, the third line is a connecting link to the other stanzas; it provides momentum to the poem.