“Tangled Up in Blue” is a song written by Bob Dylan. The song manages to tell the whole story of the life and love of the lyrical hero (Smith 280).
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The structure of the song is rather monotonous, which resembles epic narratives. However, the rhymes are present, though not regular. The simple lines of the poem devoid of any technical intricacies are aimed to make an emphasis on its meaning and show the influence of the Cubist school (which was striving to achieve the utmost simplicity of the form) on the author.
The major characteristic feature of this poem is its multiple perspectives that can be found within a single plane. There is no sense of time in the lyrics, everything happens simultaneously in the past, present, and future. This unites the poem with the previous two. We can reconstruct the events (the singer looks back at his life, recollects the woman he loved and their breakup) but at the same time we move from flashbacks to flash-forwards, so we cannot be sure what happened and what did not. The future is unpredictable but we see glimpses of it in the past and present.
The poem is unique in the way the topic and the technique intertwine. The reader sees a classical story but cannot make out which parts of it constitute a real narrative and which of them are born in the imagination of the main character. This is a complex metaphor of life with its multiple scenarios and existential choices that cannot occur simultaneously. When they are taken together, they map a human fate. The same idea is observed in the previous poems: we choose our path without actually seeing all the possible options, being concentrated only on one aspect. That is why all of us happen to be always “tangled up in blue”.
Smith, Keverne. “Tangled Up in Grief: Bob Dylan’s Songs of Separation.” OMEGA-Journal of Death and Dying 68.3 (2014): 279-291. Print.