Friday, March 27, 2009

LPoD - a bubble bursts

Thanks to a tweet from Claudia Ceraso, aka fceblog, I viewed this video today. It features Kevin Murphy, a lecturer from Ithaca university and proposes a whole new interpretation of one of my all time favourite poems, Robert Frost's The Road not Taken. True to his title, Murphy does deliver a lecture. Not even chalk and talk. Just talk. And he doesn't move from his spot behind the podium. If, therefore, you have a short attemntion span and/or you don't have a deep interest in the poem, skip straight to the end of this post.

It puts me in mind of the song Every Breath You Take by the Police. It is one of the most popular first dance choices for newly married couples. What none of them seem to realise is that this is not a song about deep and abiding love. It's a song about an obsessed spurned-lover-turned-stalker. I kid you not. Listen to the lyrics. According to one article I read, even the artists are baffled that people could misinterpret the song so completely.

In much the same way, I feel as if my comfortable illusions about Frost and this poem have been shattered. But Murphy mounts a compelling argument.


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