The theme of Sound of Silence is alienation and lack of communication. From the darkness (my old friend) onwards it carries that theme and loneliness along. "In restless dreams I walked ALONE" Then the neon light splits the night and touches the sound of silence. The naked light show 10,000 people (maybe more) talking without speaking and hearing without listening and writing songs that voices never shared (no one dared) because of the fear of breaking the silence. Then the writer steps in with his warning "Fools said I you do not know, silence like a cancer grows, thus he draws attention to the dangers of non communication. But with no success " but my words like silent raindrops fell"
The last verse is interesting to me where he talks about "the neon god they made". Could this be television? Fairly new in 1964 when the song was written but completely changing social values and interaction. Families stared at a silver screen rather than talk to each other.
Then the sign flashes it's warning to take note of loneliness as opitimised by people living on the streets or in poor housing.
The song was written on Feb 19th 1964. You might like to draw attention to other songs following the same theme. You can point to Bleeker Street on Wednesday Morning 3am with lines like "Voices leaking in a sad cafe" and "$30 pays your rent on Bleeker Street". There is another song called "A poem on the underground wall" written in London where the Underground is what New Yorkers call the Subway. This song is about a mysterious graffiti artist who writes a one word poem of "four letters" on the wall. It was written about a very lonely place Whitechapel station in London's east end.
Yet another song from this period is "A most Peculiar Man" about a lonely man living in one room who winds up killing himself. "And all the people said, what a shame that he's dead, but wasn't he a most peculiar man". They excuse themselves from any involvement in his death by saying he was...
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