Fire And Ice By Frost
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“Fire and Ice”
In Robert Frost’s poem “Fire and Ice” the main theme is the final destruction of the earth. Many people speculate how the world will come to an end. Frost compares the destructive forces of fire and ice and gives the reader insight into Frost’s own experiences and thoughts of entire destruction.
At the very beginning of the poem, Frost literally offers two possibilities for the end of the world. “Some say the world will end in fire, / Some say in ice.” (l. 1-2). People have wondered for years as to how the world will be destroyed. Most believe the Bible that the world will end in fire. Others favor the view of another Ice Age caused from a meteor hitting earth. Beyond the literal reference, Frost also leads the reader to observe the downfall of mankind.
In the next two lines Frost tells the reader what he has experienced. He concurs with “those who favor fire” (l. 4). Frost relates the detrimental fire to desire. He believes that desire will ultimately bring about the end. This relation suggests that desire, or lust, greed and want, when used negatively bring about one’s downfall and could certainly bring about the downfall of an entire planet.
Frost next contrasts the relation of fire and desire with that of ice and hatred.
“But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.” (l. 5-9).
Frost is saying that if the world must be destroyed a second time that he would want it to end with damaging ice to show what hate would be like. Frost relates ice to the hatred throughout the world. He has seen enough hate to consummate world wide death. Ice surrounds objects and causes them to crack or break from the pressure; much like hatred does to an individual. Hate gets into one’s very soul and forces out all the good, eventually eating away the core of one’s being.
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