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Is the poem about Suicide, Murder, or something else?

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morf13
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Is the poem about Suicide, Murder, or something else?

There is more than one way to lose your life to a killer

http://www.zodiackillersite.com/
http://zodiackillersite.blogspot.com/
https://twitter.com/Morf13ZKS

 
Posted : March 28, 2015 10:32 pm
Norse
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Slightly different take on it (I won’t bore you with repeating yet again that I believe the poem is about suicide):

To what extent does it influence our interpretation of the poem that Z is the suspected author?

To me this is not a question of whether an interpretation is possible or not (it’s a poem – and it’s possible to interpret it in any way imaginable), but rather of which interpretation is the likeliest. The desktop poem conforms to a standard – word by word. It is a typical amateurish attempt at writing a poem about suicide.

Could it be about murder? Sure – like I said above it can be about anything. But to opt for the murder interpretation means – I claim – to set the likelier interpretation aside. And why would we do that? Because Z wrote it? Well, yes – by all means – if Z did write it, that changes the context of the thing dramatically, and this has to be taken into consideration.

But we don’t know that he wrote the wretched thing. It remains a controversial, disputed question whether he did or not.

 
Posted : March 28, 2015 11:25 pm
Talon
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Let’s assume for a moment that it is about murder. As Morf brings up, Sherwood Morrill said the poem was written by the Zodiac. It was also said in another thread that most LE people agreed that it was about murder.
Logically, one would think that police, FBI and any other concerned citizen would be swarming all over RCC trying to match that (z’s) handwriting. Records, teacher interviews, student interviews, etc. After all this would be the only thing actually written by zodiac that ties him to a specific place. Problem is that didn’t happen. Why?

 
Posted : March 28, 2015 11:57 pm
(@joedetective)
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Norse is incorrect in saying that an argument could be made that the poem is about suicide. All you have to do is pay attention to the pronouns. In a poem like The Waste Land, a poet like T. S. Elliot can change perspectives, become different voices, speak as omniscient, 1st person and even 2nd person, however, in the desk top poem, which has no literary merit, and is obviously written by someone with very little literary background, you have to take the poem at face value, which means it cannot be interpreted in any other way than dealing with the temptation to murder.

You add the fact that the handwriting is very similar to Z’s, and the fact the poem was found in the Riverside College library, you get a very strong case for Z being Bate’s killer. The only reason why I’m not certain about this has to do with LE’s apparent dismissal of the theory. I wish I knew why LE have gone so cold on the idea.

I’ve said this before about the desk top poem, but I’ll say it again. It’s the tone and style of it that I find strikingly similar to the letters.

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 12:02 am
Tahoe27
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Taken from the Ross thread:

…..

What does "sick of living/unwilling to die" refer to? Who is "she"? What’s the meaning of "she will be found this time"? In the context of a suicide poem all of the above makes perfect sense, there’s no need for any very inventive interpretation.
In the context of a murder poem/murder fantasy poem, however – how do we explain this? Is the murderer sick of living/unwilling to die – or the victim? Or both? Is "she", who appears to be the author, in fact the victim? Is the murderer referring to an instance of a woman being attacked, left to die – and then found? But next time she won’t be – what? Found? Saved?

The obvious explanation is that the author refers to someone attempting suicide, but being found in time to be saved. It’s a common phenomenon: People attempt suicide as a cry for help. Again, this isn’t the only possible interpretation – it’s a poem, after all. But is it a more likely interpretation than the proposed alternative (that this is a highly convoluted reference to murder)? I would say so.

Yes. Most suicide victims don’t want to die. To me, the title SCREAMS suicide: Who is sick of living and unwilling to die?

This poem would sound funny if it was written in first person: "All over my new red dress", "I won’t die this time", "Someone’ll find me".

IMO, it’s easier for the author to reflect on it this way.

–I often wonder how much we could be wasting our time because we simply do not know everything LE does. Could be whoever wrote this came forward years later and all this is a moot point! Or not…


…they may be dealing with one or more ersatz Zodiacs–other psychotics eager to get into the act, or perhaps even other murderers eager to lay their crimes at the real Zodiac’s doorstep. L.A. Times, 1969

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 12:11 am
Tahoe27
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Let’s assume for a moment that it is about murder. As Morf brings up, Sherwood Morrill said the poem was written by the Zodiac. It was also said in another thread that most LE people agreed that it was about murder.
Logically, one would think that police, FBI and any other concerned citizen would be swarming all over RCC trying to match that (z’s) handwriting. Records, teacher interviews, student interviews, etc. After all this would be the only thing actually written by zodiac that ties him to a specific place. Problem is that didn’t happen. Why?

It did happen. :)


…they may be dealing with one or more ersatz Zodiacs–other psychotics eager to get into the act, or perhaps even other murderers eager to lay their crimes at the real Zodiac’s doorstep. L.A. Times, 1969

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 12:18 am
morf13
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By the way, there was a female Student at RCC in 66 with those RH initials(there were not many I found). I wrote her a letter of the poem and asked her straight out if it was possible that she wrote it. She never responded.

I hate poetry. Interesting that two Z suspects Ross Sullivan, and Fred Manalli liked Poetry. I took some journalism courses in school, but could not commit to making a living out of it. I am not a patient enough writer.

There is more than one way to lose your life to a killer

http://www.zodiackillersite.com/
http://zodiackillersite.blogspot.com/
https://twitter.com/Morf13ZKS

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 12:54 am
Paul_Averly
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I don’t need an interpretation of the poem, or even Sherwood to tell me the handwriting matches because there is a big fat candy cane F I can see with my own eyes.

I think it comes down to something as simple as: if Z wrote the poem, then Ross was Z.

There is not going to be a second armature poet that looks just like Z hanging around the RCC.

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 1:07 am
Norse
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Norse is incorrect in saying that an argument could be made that the poem is about suicide.

I respectfully disagree. And I am taking the poem at face value – that is precisely what I’m doing. The murder interpretation is NOT the most obvious one based purely on what the text itself says. I’m not torturing a meaning out of it which isn’t there in plain sight.

I maintain that the poem (which has little poetic merit, that’s true, but I don’t see how this is relevant – it IS a poem, amateurish or not) conforms to a standard, or a cliche even, of a "suicide fantasy" of sorts. If you can show me an analysis of this poem which demonstrates that it is most likely about murder, about someone fantasizing about killing a woman, then I will gladly reconsider my opinion.

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 1:17 am
 Soze
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The "sick of living/unwilling to die" is typical of people who suffer from a low grade form of depression called dythmia (not sure of the spelling). Dythmia, although low grade and cureable, has the highest rate of suicide. The suicide is brought about by the pain the person feels. Imagine a low grade headache. You are able to function every day and be at your best but the pain is there. Now imagine experiencing it every second of the day, every day, and nothing stops it. Thats what the pain is like for people like that. Headache is just an example for you to understand. Their pain isnt felt in that way. They don’t want to die but they certainly want it to stop. This person is female, is talking about their self and, the many attempts to end the pain. Its not about murder and its not written by a killer.

Soze

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 1:21 am
morf13
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I don’t need an interpretation of the poem, or even Sherwood to tell me the handwriting matches because there is a big fat candy cane F I can see with my own eyes.

I think it comes down to something as simple as: if Z wrote the poem, then Ross was Z.

There is not going to be a second armature poet that looks just like Z hanging around the RCC.

While I feel this way to some extent, I do not want to simply write off any other possible culprit, but you make a valid point, how many people interested in poetry, that looked just like the z sketch, hung out in that RCC Library? Can’t be many.

There is more than one way to lose your life to a killer

http://www.zodiackillersite.com/
http://zodiackillersite.blogspot.com/
https://twitter.com/Morf13ZKS

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 1:24 am
(@joedetective)
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Norse, hope I didn’t sound like a dick. I usually agree or at least see where you’re coming from with most of your opinions. I think it comes down to whether you see an "I" or a slash in line three. Do you think it’s a slash? If you think it’s an "I" than I do not understand how you can say it’s about suicide. The speaker is referring to himself cleaning blood and then goes on to imagine it all over HER red dress. How can you see it any other way?

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 1:37 am
Norse
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Joe: Not at all – we simply disagree on this, it’s nothing personal.

As for slash versus "I", it’s a definite slash for my money:

"if red/clean."

I agree, however, that IF it is an "I", then this complicates matters, because we seemingly have two different persons in play within the text (which would indeed put question marks over the suicide interpretation). I don’t think it’s an "I", though.

The most problematic part of the poem remains the opening lines: If this is a murder fantasy, who is sick of living and who is unwilling to die?

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 3:55 am
Tahoe27
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It’s personal!! :twisted:

Seriously though…me and some of my closest friends here disagree or have different points of view. If we all saw things the same way, what would be the point of discussing anything–just to pat everyone on the back?

I have never seen nor heard of that being anything other that a "/"…just like what was used in the title.

As with all "art", I guess it’s perception.


…they may be dealing with one or more ersatz Zodiacs–other psychotics eager to get into the act, or perhaps even other murderers eager to lay their crimes at the real Zodiac’s doorstep. L.A. Times, 1969

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 4:15 am
up2something
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I don’t need an interpretation of the poem, or even Sherwood to tell me the handwriting matches because there is a big fat candy cane F I can see with my own eyes.

No disrespect, but so what? I have candy cane f’s. We’ve seen handwriting from dozens of suspects that have similarities to Z’s.

The desktop y’s, d’s, and b’s are unlike ANY of the ones from known Z correspondence… unless someone can show me one. Just one.

 
Posted : March 29, 2015 4:33 am
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