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    Robert Frost's Birches portraying him as a terrifying poet

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    Need a 250 word response to the following:
    â?¢ Read â??Birchesâ?, by Robert Frost
    â?¢ Discuss how the poem might support or refute Lionel Trilling's view that Frost is a "terrifying poet."

    Here is some information on Lionel Trilling and Robert Frost and the incident that precipitated Trilling referring to Frost as a 'terrifying poet':

    In 1958, when Frost turned 85, his publisher gave a party in his honor at the Waldorf-Astoria and invited Lionel Trilling to be the featured speaker. Trilling, who preferred cities to rural idylls, shocked everyone by confessing that he had only recently come to admire Frost's work, specifically for its overlooked grimness. ''I regard Robert Frost as a terrifying poet,'' he announced. Trilling sent a letter to Frost apologizing for the stir his remarks had caused. ''Not distressed at all,'' Frost wrote back. ''You made my birthday a surprise party.'' And then, in one of those swooping summations with which he regularly rewards his readers, Frost added: ''No sweeter music can come to my ears than the clash of arms over my dead body when I am down.''


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    Solution Preview

    This poem serves both positions. The answer lies in the viewpoint of letting go.

    The poem reveals a narrator reminiscing about his or her childhood. The narrator sees a birch tree and wants to believe that a boy bent the branches. In reality, it was the ice storm that bent the tree. The author sees the, "truth" of the situation but still ponders on the idea ...

    Solution Summary

    This solution discusses Lionel Trilling suggesting that Robert Frost is a terrifying poet. It serves to explore whether or not this statement was valid while analyzing Birches by Robert Frost as an example.