April 20, 2014

Homework Help: ENGLISH 11

Posted by JIM on Monday, March 5, 2012 at 4:22pm.

Richard Bone by Edgar Lee Masters:

When I first came to Spoon River
I did not know whether what they told me
Was true or false.
They would bring me an epitaph
And stand around the shop while I worked
And say "He was so kind," "He was wonderful,"
"She was the sweetest woman," "He was a consistent Christian."
And I chiseled for them whatever they wished,
All in ignorance of its truth.
But later, as I lived among the people here,
I knew how near to the life
Were the epitaphs that were ordered for them when they died.
But still I chiseled whatever they paid me to chisel
And made myself party to the false chronicles
Of the stones,
Even as the historian does who writes
Without knowing the truth,
Or because he is influenced to hide it.

1) why does he feel shame?

2) what is he saying about the history we learn from books and newspapers?

I really don't understand poems, could someone please answer these 2 questions!!!!!! Thanx

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