A Considerable Speck Poem by Robert Frost

A Considerable Speck

Rating: 3.2


A speck that would have been beneath my sight
On any but a paper sheet so white
Set off across what I had written there.
And I had idly poised my pen in air
To stop it with a period of ink
When something strange about it made me think,
This was no dust speck by my breathing blown,
But unmistakably a living mite
With inclinations it could call its own.
It paused as with suspicion of my pen,
And then came racing wildly on again
To where my manuscript was not yet dry;
Then paused again and either drank or smelt--
With loathing, for again it turned to fly.
Plainly with an intelligence I dealt.
It seemed too tiny to have room for feet,
Yet must have had a set of them complete
To express how much it didn't want to die.
It ran with terror and with cunning crept.
It faltered: I could see it hesitate;
Then in the middle of the open sheet
Cower down in desperation to accept
Whatever I accorded it of fate.
I have none of the tenderer-than-thou
Collectivistic regimenting love
With which the modern world is being swept.
But this poor microscopic item now!
Since it was nothing I knew evil of
I let it lie there till I hope it slept.

I have a mind myself and recognize
Mind when I meet with it in any guise
No one can know how glad I am to find
On any sheet the least display of mind.

Mark Arvizu 20 January 2015

Run Forest run! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !

111 6 Reply
Andrew Hoellering 24 February 2009

Frost's description of intelligence in action is wonderfully graphic, and his ending, punning on the double meaning of mind, both satisfying and subtle.The poem perfectly illustrates what Albert Schweitzer meant by 'reverence for life.'

51 21 Reply
Kiana Epp 07 November 2012

Every time I see a spec on a piece of paper I am going to think of this poem. Thanks Robert Frost

49 18 Reply
* Sunprincess * 25 October 2012

wow..a smart man who respects life..an admirable quality..a brilliant masterpiece from one of the master's of poetry.. :)

38 25 Reply
Ghanshyam Pilania 28 March 2007

A great poem in very simple words....Beautifully describing a small incident.

38 25 Reply
Buddy Robinson 19 July 2018

A most readable poet. Not just because of how he uses words, but because he has something worth reading.

2 1 Reply
Dhruv Mulmule 01 January 2018

Made my day

1 1 Reply
Jamie Black 28 February 2016

A gentle soul demonstrates a minding for all minds, large or small.

4 6 Reply
Lily Barnes 13 January 2016

cool poem, bro! tell it again. maybe at a party sometime.

1 10 Reply
Raymond Farrell 15 May 2015

Great poem no beating around the bush just straight the point and masterfully crafted. If most of the poetry in the world were like this people would start again en masse.

3 5 Reply
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