One of the essential elements of a parody is that it is recognized as such: A parody that is too obscure has failed its basic purpose. In “The Road Not Taken,” Frost passes up several opportunities to make his “joke” more explicit, most notably by failing to give the roads a shared destination rather than simply a similar condition of wear. (And even that similarity is qualified, because it depends on the speaker’s perception, not his actual knowledge—after all, having failed to take the first road, he can’t be sure how traveled it is or isn’t, beyond his immediate line of sight.) The usual interpretation of “The Road Not Taken” is almost certainly wrong, but the idea that the poem is a parody doesn’t seem exactly right, either.
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