The color White is the symbol in the poem “For Once, Then, Something” written by Robert Frost. For many of the cultures and people, White represents virtues as purity, innocence, clarity, truth and goodness. Frost rebukes ‘something white’ undermined by the ripple emanating from a single drop of water. ‘Something white’ refers to truth. The poet is trying to tell us that an attempt should be made to decipher beyond illusions and outwardly appearances and seek out the truth.
But truth is never an absolute rather it is a relative. The subject mulls over what he sees and wonders whether he had encountered the reality or truth or whether it was just a perceived reality or ‘ A pebble of quartz.’ The narrator is also unable to concretely define the ‘something white’ that he sees and it is termed as ‘uncertain.’ This is a pointer about however hard the narrator tries looking deeper, he is never able to fully comprehend the bigger scheme of things as truths cannot be understood fully.
Allusion stimulates extra information, ideas and associations in the mind of the reader with just a word or two. William Meredith in the poem “Dreams of Suicide” instills in the reader’s minds, the mindset of a writer who has committed suicide namely Ernest Hemingway. The word shotgun refers to Hemingway who ended his life with one. The mention of the Unicorn into which the speaker turns to; after grabbing the shotgun’s “metal horn”, refers to the unique talent that Hemingway possessed. The poem throws light on the tragic death of several talented authors and is trying to draw awareness to suicide.