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Update - Frost Visits the South - Leaves Lasting Legacy

Pictured above, visiting authors for the 2019 literary festival at Agnes Scott College, inspired by Robert Frost.

Top Right - Nikky Finney; Bottom Left - Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o; Bottom Right - Gillian Lee-Fong

A couple of days ago I wrote about FROST; both the small white ice crystals and the poet. I need to correct something.

Don't worry.

If you live in the southern United states, it still looks like temperatures will stay above freezing. Everyday things are getting greener!

This correction relates to the comment I made about Robert Frost, the poet. I was incorrect when I said Frost often visited a college in the Northeast. Instead, Frost often visited Agnes Scott College in Atlanta, Georgia.

His visits turned into a meaningful legacy.

It all started with a connection.

In 1935 Robert Frost paid his first visit to Agnes Scott College. He went to see his friend, the College president, Wallace Alston.

Like the words in Frost's famous poem The Road Not Taken, his choice to make that visit made all the difference for many to come.

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim,

Because it was grassy and wanted wear;

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally layIn leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I kept the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way,

I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

After his first visit to Agnes Scott, Frost returned again in 1940 and 1945, and then every year until his death in 1963. His visits were more than a quick lecture. He was generous and made time to interact with students and faculty over a few days during his visits. These visits began a tradition that has instilled an appreciaton of literature in the students of Agnes Scott and challenged them to explore innovative ways to experience, discuss and create literature.

The tradition Frost began has since further expanded to include students in the state of Georgia. If you visited the Agnes Scott last week, April 4-5, 2019, you could have attended the 48th Annual Writers' Festival, another result of the road chosen by Robert Frost.

Frost's legacy, The 48th Annual Writers' Festival, is the oldest continuous literary event in Georgia. Three distinguished authors, Ngῦgῖ wa Thiong'o, Nikky Finney, and Agnes Scott alumna writer, novelist Gillian Lee-Fong '00 were this year's featured authors. Like Frost, these authors not only lectured, students and faculty were also given engaging personal opportunities to learn from each of them.

Like most people, I hope my actions will make the world a better place. It is a joy to see the impactful results of one person and The Road Not Taken.

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