For every parcel I stoop down to seize
I lose some other off my arms and knees,
And the whole pile is slipping, bottles, buns,
Extremes too hard to comprehend at. once
Yet nothing I should care to leave behind.
With all I have to hold with~ hand and mind
And heart, if need be, I will do my best.
To keep their building balanced at my breast.
I crouch down to prevent them as they fall;
Then sit down in the middle of them all.
I had to drop the armful in the road
And try to stack them in a better load.

Analysis, meaning and summary of Robert Frost's poem The Armful


  1. This is my favorite Frost poem.

    Are the bottles and buns the bread and the wine of christ, and could it also be the babies buns and and the babies bottle—
    does the poem have any hints of infidelity—- “Extremes too hard to comprehend at once
    Yet nothing I should care to leave behind.”
    This poem is certainly holding for me an attention of sanity and the strategy to keep it requires great self knowledge and control and the ability to let go of things, even if temporarily in order to keep them in the end. This is true in relationships —-of both lovers and parent child relationships.

    sometimes we have to let go and begin again to hold onto everything we need and love dearly.

  2. Valrie Truocchio says:

    An individual built many advantageous facts presently there. I did looking with regard to inside the challenge and also noticed lots of men and females might agree within your internet page.

  3. Brian says:

    Obviously such a seasoned poet as Robert Frost would not write a poem about parcels but about the symbolic struggles of life. Not only do the “bottles, buns…” symbolize the complexities of living such a stressed life and juggling many things, but also the things that one must live with for his entire life. The death of several of Frost’s children occurred earlier in his life, and he must deal with their deaths along with living a normal life full of these other stressful things.

  4. slow joe crow says:

    Many people have experienced this situation at least once, and they know how frustrating it can be. One can easily relate to these circumstances. The poem is not necessarily about an armful that is hard to carry, but a mind that is full of stress and tension. The mind contains strains that the owner does not know how to manage. Frost’s poem describes a troubled mind that is packed with too many impossible thoughts and worries. These thoughts and worries are tremendously complicated to organize.

  5. Demi says:

    This poem is a symbol of all the “things” we have to deal with happy or sad as they are. Sometimes you can’t carry them all but have to work at them. Robert Frost uses a lot of symbolism in his poems.

  6. Evan Vars says:

    The poem is very symbolic. On the surface, it is about a man who is holding too many parcels so that he is having trouble carrying them around until finally he must reorganize the parcels in a better way so that he can carry them. The parcels are symbolic of all of the “things” we have in our lives: God, family, friends, school, sports, relationships, etc. We try to balance all of these things in our life using our hands, minds, and hearts, but sometimes life becomes overwhelming and we simply cannot carry all of the things we are trying to carry. At this point, we must set down everything, reorganize, reprioritize, and start again.

  7. Rajesh Venkatesan says:

    The narrator has an armful of things. These things often fall down putting the narrator into trouble. ‘Collecting things’ is easy comparing to ‘safe-guarding of things’.

  8. Nick says:

    pretty trippy poem, its cool

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