The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #103495   Message #2109276
Posted By: ClaireBear
23-Jul-07 - 11:17 AM
Thread Name: Harris and the Mare - murder or not?
Subject: RE: Harris and Mare - murder or not?
I have always assumed that the onlookers in the tavern didn't help because they were members of the same Pacifist church as the speaker. I'm not sure if the church is meant to be Shaker, Mennonite, Amish, or something yet else; that the speaker is of one of these faiths is demonstrated by the fact that he uses the quaint pronouns "thee" and "thou" when speaking to Harris...and the fact that he wants Harris to take them home in a horse-drawn vehicle, although the song seems to be set in relativelyt modern times.

Anyway, I'd speculate that the other tavern-goers were looking on in shocked disapproval of the speaker's behavior, not having been pushed over the edge of their behavioral paradigm as had he. The whole song hinges on being pushed beyond the boundaries of what he thought his belief system was. So out of his element, it's a small wonder he didn't know where to stop.