9th Grade Teachers
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Kids play, dogs; bark; parents go to work. Some things will always be, like death and taxes. In fact, death is such a prominent part of our reality that countless songs have been written about it. The song “Don’t Fear the Reaper” by the Blue Oyster Cult is one memorable song about death; it also alludes to the specific death of two young lovers—Romeo and Juliet.
how the song depicts Rome/Juliet
Although Romeo and Juliet are mentioned, they are not the prime focus of this song. The song teaches a lesson that you should not be afraid to take chances in life; death is not something to be afraid of. This is most evident by the repetition of the title “Don’t fear the reaper.” The song then alludes to Romeo and Juliet’s choice to die together: “Romeo and Juliet are together in eternity.” It also mentions how people die every day: “40,000 men and women everyday like Romeo and Juliet.” The most detailed allusion can be found in the last verse of the song where the speaker alludes to Juliet specifically. It mentions some of the thoughts she may have had when she chose to kill herself.
“Love of two is one
Here but now they're gone
Came the last night of sadness
And it was clear she couldn't go on. . .
. . . and she had no fear
And she ran to him
Then they started to fly
They looked backward and said goodby
She had become like they are
She had taken his hand”
how accurate is the allusion
“Don’t Fear the Reaper” contains several allusions to the story Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare. Most of them are accurate. Firstly, the play is very clearly about two young lovers who kill themselves; the song highlights young people willing to take risks and die together. The thoughts of Juliet as she decides to kill herself are also accurate, except where the song suggests that Romeo and Juliet CHOSE together to die. In the text, they each made the choice separately.
In conclusion, the only things certain in life are death and taxes. “Don’t Fear the Reaper” by the Blue Oyster Cult is a song about death. It alludes to the famous young lover’s suicide effectively.
About the Blogger
Melanie is a graduate of Tunkhannock Area High School and Bloomsburg University and could not be happier to now to call Elk Lake her school. She considers it an honor to teach the Freshmen class, and if it is possible, she is even more excited than ever before for this year's success. (Freshmen Rule!)