The speaker in the poem who is traveling through the snow at night pauses with his horse near the woods near a neighbor’s house to watch the snow falling around him. His horse shakes his harness bells, questioning the pause. Maybe this place isn’t on their normal route, or he is curious that there doesn’t appear to be a farmhouse nearby.
The speaker continues to stand near the woods as he’s attracted by the deep, silent dark surroundings. He feels bound to move further into the snowy woods. He ultimately decides to continue, concluding with perhaps the most famous lines of the poem: ‘But I have promises to keep, and miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep.’