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Analysis and comments on My November Guest by Robert Frost

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Comment 10 of 120, added on March 6th, 2006 at 7:33 AM.

The first line of the poem starts with “My Sorrow.” This part may be
interpreted in many different ways. The first way to see it may be as an
uninvited guest, someone who he loathes to see. This person, most likely a
girl, is the cause of all his troubles. His life is fine and smooth until
she comes along. When he sees the girl, he feels that she is like autumn,
desolate and bare. It starts with “ My sorrow,” which can mean that it is
the girl. It is obvious that the girl has much different taste from him.
Everything the girl likes he dislikes. Like the “ she is glad that the
birds are gone,” suggests her personality. She sees beauty in the
desolateness, which the narrator disagrees with. She obviously has
different tastes from him, and he is constantly trying to argue with her.
Maybe someone from his childhood, when they were younger. A friend, but a
person with an entirely different viewpoint from him. Thus, this kind of
debates he loves.

He can be just talking about a nuisance. When autumn comes, he engages
with her a debate. About what beauty is, which of the seasons have the most
beauty in it. Autumn is where everything is bare. So there is a certain
neatness and sadness in it. This sadness can be translated into a piece of
art. Of course, the narrator prefers it to be bright and colorful, like
summer. They may be attached, and thus this debate always ensures. No
matter what he does, he realizes that he cannot appreciate autumn to the
same extent as the girl. Even he himself acknowledges that. In the end, he
grudgingly says that he is starting to see from her perspective, however,
he himself can never fully appreciate the beauty in desolation.

The first It is a complex story about two complex people. After she died,
Frost said that she was the unspoken half of everything he ever wrote. They
were married for 40 years. He told his children that most of his poems were
written to her - he dedicated all his early books (until her death in 1938)
to her. Think of all the different meanings of "My Sorrow" - her sorrow is
his sorrow, he possesses her grief, and he is the cause of her grief, that
she is a sorrow to him. (I do not think the later was the case)

Subject Matter: Its about his memories. This poem, like all the others, is
dedicated to his wife. Thus, the subject matter is obviously about her. The
word “she” is repeated 7 times in the poem, which shows his affection for
her. In addition, he seems to be learning from her, like he finally sees
things her way.

Imagery: In the poem, the poet uses many metaphors to describe his
sorrows. He uses figurative languages to help us visualize the picture he

Ryan Goh from Singapore
Comment 9 of 120, added on October 23rd, 2005 at 8:30 AM.

in my point of views, this poem is about the sorrows that persona feels.
his life is conquered by his sorrow which seems to be very pleased and at
the same affect the persona. the "sorrow" that he feels get along with the
withered tree which appears to carry negative connotation.the persona find
that the he is losing to his sorrow.

md hanafiah from Malaysia
Comment 8 of 120, added on October 20th, 2005 at 5:12 PM.

This poem uses a lot of figurative language. The author makes it easy for
us to visualize everything that is happening in the poem

Comment 7 of 120, added on October 7th, 2005 at 11:33 AM.

That is a beautiful poem by Frost. I like the way that Frost uses metaphors
for the way his sorrow is.

Filo the Great from United States
Comment 6 of 120, added on June 21st, 2005 at 11:16 PM.

This is a beautiful poem that deserves to be transcripted accurately which
this version is not. It is a "worsted" gray which I think is a kind of
material. And it is a beauty she "truely sees" she does not "wryly" see

Fiona Cameron from Thailand
Comment 5 of 120, added on June 9th, 2005 at 8:25 PM.

My favorite Frost poem. I took it 100% literal, with no symbolism.
Basically because I felt as the author felt, the season in all it's
"bleakness" is actually comforting.

Eululie Astaire from United States
Comment 4 of 120, added on April 19th, 2005 at 1:11 PM.

This poem is great i never read it but man is it great this relates to life
in different ways i love this poem

Double j from United Kingdom
Comment 3 of 120, added on January 28th, 2005 at 8:09 PM.

Lovely poem; even the desolute winter has its charm and a place in scheme
of things of nature. I remember to have read somewhere: "Envy and fear are
the only passions to which no pleasure is attached"; everything else has;
why not winter!

Rao from United States
Comment 2 of 120, added on November 18th, 2004 at 9:38 AM.

I used a quote from this poem to conclude a column about grief / loss. I
had opened the column with Eliot's quote about April being the cruelest
month; I then wrote about November, 2004, and the losses I experienced. I
concluded the column with the Frost quote and a comment.

"'My sorrow, when she's here with me,/thinks these dark days of autumn
rain/are beautiful as days can be;/she loves the bare, the withered
tree;/she walks the sodden pasture lane.' May each of us be able to see the
beauty and comfort of the Novembers in our lives, and may the upcoming
season of Advent give each of us the space and time to allow that which is
lying fallow within us to spring forth with new life."

Colleen Winston, OSB from United States
Comment 1 of 120, added on November 8th, 2004 at 7:02 PM.

I believe that in this poem Frost uses descriptions of nature and
personification to evoke the bittersweet beauty of depression. "My Sorrow,
when she's here with me..."

Perhaps I read too much into it, but the line "Her pleasure will not let me
stay" could allude to thoughts of suicide. But Frost declines and finds
beauty and art in these emotions.

A truly lovely, evocative poem.

Tom Faris from United States

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Information about My November Guest

Poet: Robert Frost
Poem: 3. My November Guest
Volume: A Boy's Will
Year: 1913
Added: Feb 1 2004
Viewed: 449 times
Poem of the Day: Mar 21 2009

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