If We Were Having Coffee #16 – Country Roads

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If we were having coffee, I would have a few choices to offer your today. I have a breakfast blend, a flavored French Vanilla coffee, and an espresso blend. For creamers, we have Sugar Cookie and Italian Sweet Crème. I’m going with the espresso blend and the sweet creamer. I’ve come to enjoy Italian Sweet Crème with espresso blend. I think it takes me back to a sidewalk table of some not so crowded cafe in Europe.

So let’s step out on to the back porch and enjoy the morning breeze. It’s not a European cafe but I do have a small table with comfortable outdoor chairs.  Besides, it’s so much cooler on the porch right now than it is in the house. One window AC unit and a few fans aren’t offering as much as nature is doing by herself outside after much needed rains over the last few weeks.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that we went to our first Pig Roast a few weekends ago. One of my coworkers and good friends had it at her place. She lives out in the woods, a few towns and villages away from our place which amounts to a few county and back roads away. Like every other place within a twenty-mile radius around here and probably with a number of ways to get there. There are also number of means of transportation to get anywhere including ATVs and snowmobiles. Or Amish buggies.

Country Roads. You can drive here for hours seeing so many things for the first time yet never leave that twenty-mile radius, even though it might actually be the second time. Or fifth. I’ve been in this area now for nine years and am just starting to fully appreciate it. Maybe it’s my age. Maybe my eyesight is getting better. Or maybe I’m just changing.

If we were having coffee, I would tell you that I’ve done a lot soul searching lately. Reflections on the past, accounting of the present, and directional guidance towards the future. Somehow this has led me back to a poem I read as a kid. Middle school or high school, I don’t really remember. Most likely it was explained to me by a teacher, put out there for further discussion, and thought about in a manner consistent with my age at that time. Yet here I am years later revisiting the same poem with new eyes. Older eyes. And hopefully wiser eyes.

The poem is Frost’s “The Road Not Taken” and I would venture to guess if you are reading this post, you are familiar with the poem. Like most poetry, lyrics, stories, etc., the depth of our understanding a particular piece of work might come from the author, or those enlightened few who knew the author, or those over educated few who would have you convinced they knew the author therefore they know the meaning. Or maybe the author is happy to let the reader or listener derive their own meaning and provoke thought.

That is how I feel about this poem. Whether you take this poem literally, metaphorically, or subscribe to the notion that Frost wrote it in jest; this is a life poem that should provoke thought.

Most people I’ve ever talked to look at this poem in two ways. Either Frost was content with the path he had taken, or he had regret for the path he had not taken. Sounds simple enough to my non MFA type mind. I enjoy the challenge of complexity but embrace practicality of simplicity.

If we were having coffee, I would suggest that the poem offers something to each belief. And a solution. Something my technical mind grasps. When I picture two roads diverged, and in the manner described at the beginning of the poem, I picture a fork in the road. A fork being less than ninety degrees. If you’ve ever studied geometry, and have an understanding of statistics, then there is a good chance you might come to the conclusion that the probability of those two roads intersecting once again is very high. Or, maybe you live in the country like I do. With hundreds of country roads, going all different directions, with more forks than a school cafeteria, yet somehow connected and often leading back to the original road.

What does all of this mean to me? It means it’s possible for us to enjoy both roads. Still. To have no regrets. To see where it all takes us. Adventures that are waiting, and often with us seeing or experiencing something new. Or other times our seeing or experiencing wonders we’ve already enjoyed, or at lease should have yet now are approaching as though it were the first time.

Just like my writing at a later age. Or my renewed interest in my guitars. Or more simply, like the country roads I explore each week.

So, how about you?

B

Country Roads

Country Roads

Weekend Coffee Share is hosted each week by Part-Time Monster

Pics courtesy of Pixabay

8 Comments

  1. Thanks so much B for sharing your thoughts on the Robert Frost poem. I never considered that the two roads could join up again further down the track or that there are multiple ways to get to the same place.
    I wrote a series of Letters to Dead POets as part of the A-Z April Challenge and wrote a letter to Robert Frost about this poem, which you might find interesting. https://beyondtheflow.wordpress.com/2016/04/07/f-robert-frost-the-road-not-taken/
    His poem is quite encouraging to those of us who let fear of making the wrong choice paralyze us from taking any action at all.
    Thanks for the coffee and I hope you have a great week!
    xx Rowena

    • W.C. Cunningham

      September 14, 2016 at 7:45 pm

      I loved your letter to Frost and I had never thought about it from the standpoint of parenting. It’s enough at times worrying about our own path but we do tend to guide our young ones. Ultimately, it’s about enjoying the journey and being flexible to me. 🙂

  2. It is possible to enjoy two roads or more for that matter. Roads taken at a younger life maybe abandoned leading to more paths ahead. I’ve discovered (and still discovering) that diversions make for more learning and adventures; or to knowing oneself more.

  3. Hey Bill, I am not well read clearly – so just read “the road not taken” lovely short poem i must say – I liked it. I like your take on the poem. I say regret – well for me – is something I rather not do, not to say I dont cringe at somethings i have done in my life. But, I feel without all of those things and others I would not be who I am today. I feel whatever road you travel, travel it awake and alert. Not in some bad rush to reach some end …

    Lovely having having coffee with you and discussing life – always a pleasure, speak soon . Kind regards Bella

  4. Intriguing thoughts, Roads take you many places

    • W.C. Cunningham

      September 14, 2016 at 7:50 pm

      That they do. Yesterday one took me the wrong way while traveling. I thought I knew my way while traveling so I shut off the GPS and took a wrong exit. A slight detour that allowed me to get back to the freeway I was on.

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