The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #103495   Message #2112275
Posted By: Jeri
26-Jul-07 - 09:40 PM
Thread Name: Harris and the Mare - murder or not?
Subject: RE: Harris and Mare - murder or not?
I agree Arkie. I think the main point of the song is to simply explore one possibility. There are no real answers provided, because you're left wondering about things.

Clary's attack on his wife precipitated his death, but the neighbors could have stopped the attack and in doing so, prevented Clary's death. They didn't have to use violence - there were things they could have done, starting with speaking to him. They didn't try, and I believe they're the ones most in the wrong.

Charley Noble wrote "the message is evident that sometimes even peaceful people are forced to stand up for those they love and do brutal things." I think it's more about the importance of standing up one another, for other members of the community or for their loved ones. If the neighbors had 'stood up' earlier, there might have been no death. Possibly, the line "I had to see his blood to be a man" may mean the situation had to get violent before he realized he had the strength to stand against wrong. Things had to go THAT far before he learned.

The main point seems to me to be that you can have the loftiest ideals and live your life according to some higher purpose, but it means little if you don't do right by the people closest to you.