|Robert Frost 1959 - public domain, Wikimedia Commons|
One of the most widely read and beloved poets of the 20th century, Robert Frost was born 139 years ago today. This past January also marked the 50th anniversary of his death. Frost wrote mostly about New England life and landscape, but his exceptional lyricism has touched people throughout the world. He often wrote of personal conflict and internal struggles, but in a clear and accessible meter which made his poetry easy to identify with. His family life was marked by many problems and tragedies, but he seemed always to rise above them and gain a mountaintop overview of life. A recent New Yorker profile of Frost reveals another side of Frost that many may not be aware of, namely his family political background. His own Yankee sensibility actually belied his family's southern origins - Frost's full name is Robert Lee Frost. The New Yorker article also shows him to be keenly interested in science, people, and the world at large. President John F. Kennedy described his contributions saying, "He has bequeathed his nation a body of imperishable verse from which Americans will forever gain joy and understanding." Reading Frost, whose clear and poetic thinking inspires many, also helps us understand the deepest reaches of our own minds. An enjoyable way to spend time is to peruse the comprehensive collection of Frost quotes on Goodreads; even better, reading his poems.