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Stopped by Woods on a Snowy Evening vs. The Collar.

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Introduction

Tyler Harden Ms. Davis ENGL 102-026 3 April 2003 Stopped by Woods on a Snowy Evening vs. The Collar Frost's Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening and George Herbert's The Collar can be compared in that both poems emphasize the roles and responsibilities people have in life and the duties they have to fulfill. What separates the two poems is a distinct difference in speaker and situation, which implies a different purpose in each. In Frosts' poem, the speaker talks about how he cannot stay in the woods to think and to admire the beauty of the falling snow. His horse indicates that it is odd for the man to want to stop here, "My little horse must think it queer to stop without a farmhouse near...To ask if there is some mistake" (673). This show us that it is unusual for the man to stop in the woods for no apparent reason. ...read more.

Middle

In the last two lines of the poem, the speaker hears God calling him, and he chooses to listen to Him. One can infer that the man's calling is to become a priest from the title of the poem, referring to the collar that a priest or another member of the clergy would wear. Another interpretation of the title is in its irony. A collar restricts someone from going somewhere where they should not be. The irony is in the fact that he says his life is free, yet a collar reflects something confining. In both poems the speakers recognize that they have a destiny to fulfill in life, and acknowledge that they need to pursue that. The Collar is different than Stopped by Woods on a Snowy Evening because the speaker in the story wants to ultimately serve God and do what God has planned for his life. Although the speaker starts out angry at the priesthood and living a restricted life, "I struck the board, and cry'd, 'No more; I will abroad!'" (950) ...read more.

Conclusion

which only points out a commitment to others and to himself, not specifically to fulfilling the calling God has put on his life. His responsibilities are different than the responsibilities of the speaker in The Collar. He does not feel a need to follow God and he doesn't have a congregation that is counting on him. His vocational situation is different and hence his responsibilities are different. Another difference between the two stories is that in The Collar the speaker is speaking out in anger, but in Stopped by Woods on a Snowy Evening the speaker is more or less content with his life, although he would like to spend more time in the woods if he didn't have other things to do. The attitudes in which the two speakers present the information to us are completely opposite. The differences in attitude help to portray and to emphasize the speaker's purpose in life. Attitude alone is able to give us the purpose of the speaker and emphasize his commitment to himself and to God. It ties together their responsibilities so that we are able to observe their differences. Harden 1 ...read more.

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