Friday, December 14, 2018

Take Me Home, Music Poetry

It’s hard to say poetry is just one “thing”. To boil such a complex art form into one unit would
be impossible. It is not, however, impossible to say one thing is poetry. Take, for example, John
Denver’s “Take Me Home, Country Roads.” Each word carries weight. The song has multiple
meanings. It is truly poetry. The speaker is an adult, who, after a long hiatus, hears the call of
West Virginia, their home. The occasion is not clearly established, but one can infer that the piece occurs during a moment’s nostalgia, as established by the reminiscent, romantic language. The piece seeks to convey the irresistible pull of being, for a moment, caught by the echoes of home. It helps one understand what it’s like to be far from where you grew up and remember the familiarity of
where you once were. The nostalgic tone is set immediately:

Almost heaven, West Virginia
West Virginia is established as a utopia within the narrator’s memories. As they put it,

All my memories, gather round her
The pull of West Virginia is literally occuring on the surface. The text tells the story of a West Virginian away from home. The double meaning, however, exists as a commentary of the nature of “home” itself. West Virginia is not simply a place, it’s an idea. The West Virginia described is not a literal West Virginia. The piece does not occur within West Virginia. As the narrator describes it, “West Virginia” is a manifestation of safety and familiarity.

I hear her voice in the morning hour she calls me
Radio reminds me of my home far away
Driving down the road I get a feeling
That I should have been home yesterday, yesterday

Her(West Virginia) calls to the narrator. The starry sky and misty moonshine are memories. The “calls”, are nostalgia. At its core, “Take Me Home, Country Roads,” is a song about home. Its words carry multiple meaning, as a poem’s should. It conveys the need for home in addition to an engaging story about someone far from West Virginia. A year from now, most of my peers and I will be far from home. We will yearn for the warmth of youth. Oak Park will become our West Virginia. And I’m definitely gonna crank this.

1 comment:

  1. Just wanted to let you know that something is wrong with the format but I love this song