The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost is a poem that allows the reader to think about choices in life, whether to go with the mainstream or to go alone. If we consider life as a journey, this poem highlights those times in life when a decision has to be made. The ambiguity in the poem comes up from the question of free will versus determinism.
Through this poem Frost wanted to poke fun at his friend Edward Thomas, an English-Welsh poet, who, when out walking with Frost in England would often regret not having taken a different path. Thomas would sigh over what they might have seen and done, and Frost thought this quaintly romantic.
Similarly the poem Road Not Taken" presents the speaker and the reader with a dilemma. There are two roads in an autumnal wood separating off, and there's nothing else to do but to choose one of the roads and continue life's journey.
The central message is that, in life, we are often presented with choices. When making a choice, one is required to make a decision where he or she needs to choose any one thing leaving behind all other options available to him or her in life.
In the poem Frost does not indicate whether the road he chose was the right one or not. Nonetheless, that is the way he is going now, and the place he ends up, for better or worse, was the result of his decision.
This poem is not about individuality or uniqueness by taking the road less travelled. Rather this poem is about the road taken, to be sure, as well as the road not taken, not necessarily the road less travelled. Any person who has made a decisive choice will agree that it is human nature to contemplate the "What if...". This pondering about the different life one may have lived if they had done something differently is central to "The Road Not Taken."
The speaker opts for the other road which is less travelled and, once on it, declares himself happy because it has more grass and not many folk have been down it. And thinking that he could always return one day and try the 'original' road again is certainly impossible. Because once we take a decision in our life and start working or following it, after that changing it is not an option.
The speaker says that, when he's older he might look back at this turning point in his life, the morning he took the road less travelled, because taking that particular route completely altered his way of being.
The road has been seen as a metaphor for life by Robert Frost. He portrays our lives as a path where we are walking along towards an undetermined destination. Thus the main theme of the "The Road Not Taken" is that it is often impossible to see where a life-altering decision will lead. Thus, one should make their decision swiftly and with confidence. It is normal to wonder what the outcome would have been if the other road, was chosen. But to contemplate this hypothetical deeply is folly because it is impossible to say whether taking the other road would have been better or worse. All one can say is that it would have been different.