Analysis of “Fire and Ice” Poem by Robert Lee Frost

“Fire and Ice” by Robert Lee Frost is a popular poem among high school teachers. Its ability to create debate and discussion is like no other. Yet, it is actually quite easy to understand. Let’s take a look at a synopsis of “Fire and Ice” before moving onto an analysis of poem and its figurative language.


The poem begins by saying some people believe the earth will end in a fire while others believe it will end in ice. Since the author has felt his own desire, he feels the world will end in fire. Yet, he states, if the world could end twice, he has known enough hate in this world that it could also end in ice.

Rhyme scheme: ABAABCBCB


The poem compares “fire” to desire and “ice” to hate. He states that human desire is a strong emotion, strong enough to end the world. He continues by stating hate in its many forms is also a great way to end the world. He feels that he has experienced enough in his own life to know that desire kills, but hatred and bitterness can kill just as easily.

Figurative Language

Fire – Passion
Ice – Hate / Bitterness

Poem: “Fire and Ice” by Robert Lee Frost

Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.

Gary R. Hess

Gary was born and raised on a small farm in rural Kansas. Today, he is teaching various nationalities English in Southeast Asia. Get his newest poetry eBook here.

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