Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Shortcuts

ARWEN
This isn't Vermont, although the picture does remind me of my days at Bennington and a certain local poet.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I--
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference

Robert Frost

Gosh, I love that poem.

The picture above was taken at Yedigöller National Park, on Bolu Mountain in Turkey.

I travelled over that mountain a few times. The old highway (two lanes) snakes up though some breathtaking scenery, up to the top. There's a good roadside restaurant run by the Varan busline there. One really should stop and take in the view, especially when the strawberries are in season.
A tunnel bypasses it all now, saving hours. Hours! Just think of the things I can do with all that time.

The scenic route usually means we took the long way by accident, in my family anyway. So in an age when everything is "so 42 seconds ago" I wonder, will the next generation seek out these places? I think our grandparents wondered the same thing about us, yet I wander - except when there's a convenient tunnel.

Darn tunnel.


There weren't many tunnels where I grew up, so I probably love them more as a result. You know what? When you use a tunnel, you bypass all sorts of lovely. But when you get where you need to go, there's extra time to find a different sort of lovely at your destination.

Brings writing to mind. I prefer to follow an unexplored story trail, but I don't have time to revisit unless it's useful, because a pretty path isn't enough. Something needs to be stunning for me to make the trek. Think of the poem. Frost doesn't let us get away from his single minded idea. He takes no tangent to describe the leaves on the trees, only the leaves on his path. Seems to me like sticking to the path is a good idea.

Gosh, it took me a long time to realize that!




6 comments:

Sarah said...

What a beautiful post, Carolyn. Your pic of the tunnels reminds me of the island of Madeira, a very mountainous little island that juts up from the sea. It's where my husband's family is from. About 10-15 years ago, they started building tunnels, so now what used to be a 3 hour trip from one end of the island to the other takes about 45 minutes. It's definitely a smoother trip, but the winding ride by the ocean was an experience in and of itself.

Old Kitty said...

Awwwww!! Off I go to find my own less travelled road!!

:-) Take care
x

Matthew MacNish said...

Awesome post. Personally, I always try to seek out the high places in the world, but then tunnels can be fun too.

When it comes to writing, I have to have a map, or I get lost.

Southpaw said...

I love that poem too. Very inspirational post. Thank you.

LTM said...

wow. First, that is the greatest poem. yes. But second, what a lovely inspiration from both the tunnel helping us find the lovely to the path we need to stick to.

I'm having all sorts of thoughts now--LOL! thx~ <3

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