Robert Lee Frost was an American poet. His work was initially published in England before it was published in the United States. Known for his realistic depictions of rural life and his command of American colloquial speech, Frost frequently wrote about settings from rural life in New England in the early 20th century, using them to examine complex social and philosophical themes.
Frost was honored frequently during his lifetime and is the only poet to receive four Pulitzer Prizes for Poetry. He became one of America's rare "public literary figures, almost an artistic institution." He was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal in 1960 for his poetic works. On July 22, 1961, Frost was named poet laureate of Vermont.
Robert Frost was born in San Francisco, California, to journalist William Prescott Frost, Jr., and Isabelle Moodie. His father descended from Nicholas Frost of Tiverton, Devon, England, who had sailed to New Hampshire in 1634 on the Wolfrana, and his mother was a Scottish immigrant.
In 1894, he sold his first poem, "My Butterfly. An Elegy" (published in the November 8, 1894, edition of the New York Independent) for $15 ($443 today). Proud of his accomplishment, he proposed marriage to Elinor Miriam White, but she demurred, wanting to finish college (at St. Lawrence University) before they married. Frost then went on an excursion to the Great Dismal Swamp in Virginia and asked Elinor again upon his return. Having graduated, she agreed, and they were married at Lawrence, Massachusetts on December 19, 1895.
Robert Frost's personal life was plagued by grief and loss. In 1885 when he was 11, his father died of tuberculosis, leaving the family with just eight dollars. Frost's mother died of cancer in 1900. In 1920, he had to commit his younger sister Jeanie to a mental hospital, where she died nine years later. Mental illness apparently ran in Frost's family, as both he and his mother suffered from depression, and his daughter Irma was committed to a mental hospital in 1947. Frost's wife, Elinor, also experienced bouts of depression.
Books by Robert Frost
Fire and Ice
"Fire and Ice" is a popular poem by Robert Frost that discusses the end of the world, likening the elemental force of fire with the emotion of desire, and ice with hate. Published in December 1920 in Harper's Magazine and in 1923 in his Pulitzer Priz...
North of Boston
North of Boston is a collection of seventeen poems by Robert Frost, first published in 1914 by David Nutt. Most of the poems resemble short dramas or dialogues. It is also called a book of people because most of the poems deal with New England themes...
A Boy's Will
A Boy's Will is a poetry collection by Robert Frost, and is the poet's first commercially published book of poems. The book was first published in 1913 by David Nutt in London, with a dedication to Frost's wife, Elinor. Its first American edition wou...
Mountain Interval is a 1916 poetry collection written by American poet Robert Frost. Published by Henry Holt, it is Frost's third poetic volume.
Selected Poems of Robert Frost
Robert Frost, who lived from March 26, 1874 to January 29, 1963, was a winner of 4 Pulitzer prizes and one of America’s best loved poets. This selection of his poems is a short walk through the variety of his simplistic natural themes and complex soc...