Simon & Garfunkel: Patterns Meaning
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The night sets softly
With the hush of falling leaves
Casting shivering shadows
On the houses through the trees
And the light from a streetlamp
Paints a pattern on my wall
Like the pieces of a puzzle
Or a child’s uneven...
anonymous Jul 5th 2016 report
The song is based on a poem by American Poet Amy Lowell also named Patterns. In the poem a woman walks in her formal English Garden and discusses the constraints of fashion and society on her life choices.
During the walk she is informed of the death of her fiancé who was compelled by tradition to go off and fight in the war and laments the patterns that they had to follow which led to this situation.
Inspired by this poem, Simon wrote the song to express the futility that we sometimes face as we repeat destructive behaviours and live lives of boring sameness. It is an indictment of the belief that life is predestine and we are doomed to repeat the past and helpless to change the future.
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