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Poems of William Blake by William Blake


SONGS OF INNOCENCE INTRODUCTION Piping down the valleys wild, Piping songs of pleasant glee, On a cloud I saw a child, And he laughing said to me:

"Pipe a song about a Lamb!" So I piped with merry cheer. "Piper, pipe that song again;" So I piped: he wept to hear. "Drop thy pipe, thy happy pipe; Sing thy songs of happy cheer!" So I sang the same again, While he wept with joy to hear. "Piper, sit thee down and write In a book, that all may read." So he vanish'd from my sight; And I pluck'd a hollow reed, And I made a rural pen, And I stain'd the water clear, And I wrote my happy songs Every child may joy to hear. THE SHEPHERD How sweet is the Shepherd's sweet lot! From the morn to the evening he stays; He shall follow his sheep all the day, And his tongue shall be filled with praise. For he hears the lambs' innocent call, And he hears the ewes' tender reply; He is watching while they are in peace, For they know when their Shepherd is nigh. THE ECHOING GREEN The sun does arise, And make happy the skies; The merry bells ring To welcome the Spring; The skylark and thrush, The birds of the bush, Sing louder around To the bells' cheerful sound; While our sports shall be seen On the echoing Green. Old John, with white hair, Does laugh away care, Sitting under the oak, Among the old folk. They laugh at our play, And soon they all say, "Such, such were the joys When we all--girls and boys-In our youth-time were seen On the echoing Green." Till the little ones, weary,

No more can be merry: The sun does descend, And our sports have an end. Round the laps of their mothers Many sisters and brothers, Like birds in their nest, Are ready for rest, And sport no more seen On the darkening green. THE LAMB Little Lamb, who made thee Dost thou know who made thee, Gave thee life, and bid thee feed By the stream and o'er the mead; Gave thee clothing of delight, Softest clothing, woolly, bright; Gave thee such a tender voice, Making all the vales rejoice? Little Lamb, who made thee? Dost thou know who made thee? Little Lamb, I'll tell thee; Little Lamb, I'll tell thee: He is called by thy name, For He calls Himself a Lamb He is meek, and He is mild, He became a little child. I a child, and thou a lamb, We are called by His name. Little Lamb, God bless thee! Little Lamb, God bless thee! THE LITTLE BLACK BOY My mother bore me in the southern wild, And I am black, but oh my soul is white! White as an angel is the English child, But I am black, as if bereaved of light. My mother taught me underneath a tree, And, sitting down before the heat of day, She took me on her lap and kissed me, And, pointed to the east, began to say: "Look on the rising sun: there God does live, And gives His light, and gives His heat away, And flowers and trees and beasts and men receive Comfort in morning, joy in the noonday. "And we are put on earth a little space, That we may learn to bear the beams of love And these black bodies and this sunburnt face Is but a cloud, and like a shady grove. "For when our souls have learn'd the heat to bear, The cloud will vanish, we shall hear His voice,

. Dick. pretty robin. That curled like a lamb's back. And by came an angel. Joe. Were all of them locked up in coffins of black. And he opened the coffins. He'd have God for his father. Near my bosom.Saying. And got with our bags and our brushes to work. laughing. and kissed me. "Hush. if he'd be a good boy. all their bags left behind. THE CHIMNEY-SWEEPER When my mother died I was very young. Pretty. for. they run. will then love me. And the Angel told Tom. was shaved. swift as arrow. and in soot I sleep. Seek your cradle narrow. Pretty. and we rose in the dark. and never want joy. Then down a green plain. leaping. who cried when his head. And round the tent of God like lambs we joy I'll shade him from the To lean in joy upon our And then I'll stand and And be like him. And my father sold me while yet my tongue Could scarcely cry "Weep! weep! weep! weep!" So your chimneys I sweep. when your head's bare. and Jack. stroke his silver hair. so I said. and sport in the wind. pretty robin! Under leaves so green A happy blossom Hears you sobbing. Ned." Thus did my mother say. And so Tom awoke." And so he was quiet. You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair. And thus I say to little English boy. who had a bright key. merry sparrow! Under leaves so green A happy blossom Sees you. There's little Tom Dacre. As Tom was a-sleeping. Though the morning was cold. Tom was happy and warm: heat till he can bear Father's knee. And wash in a river. and shine in the sun. and he THE BLOSSOM Merry. When I from black and he from white cloud free. sobbing. and that very night. 'Come out from the grove. and let them all free. Near my bosom. my love and care And round my golden tent like lambs rejoice'. he had such a sight!-That thousands of sweepers. Then naked and white. They rise upon clouds. Tom! never mind it.

silent. When the air does laugh with our merry wit. Led by the wandering light. when the meadows laugh with lively green. LAUGHING SONG When the green woods laugh with the voice of joy. ever nigh. he!" A SONG Sweet dreams. form a shade O'er my lovely infant's head! Sweet dreams of pleasant streams By happy. angel mild." The night was dark. Or else I shall be lost. Began to cry. The child was wet with dew. ha he!" When the painted birds laugh in the shade. and the child did weep. To sing the sweet chorus of "Ha.So. When Mary and Susan and Emily With their sweet round mouths sing "Ha. with soft down thy brows an infant crown Sleep. speak to your little boy. And the green hill laughs with the noise of it. THE LITTLE BOY LOST "Father. in the night . if all do their duty. where are you going? Oh do not walk so fast! Speak. The mire was deep. And to his mother brought. Who in sorrow pale. The little boy weeping sought. Where our table with cherries and nuts is spread: Come live. And the grasshopper laughs in the merry scene. no father was there. and by the hand led. they need not fear harm. moony beams! Sweet Weave Sweet Hover Sleep. through the lonely dale. And away the vapour flew. and join with me. and be merry. Appeared like his father. THE LITTLE BOY FOUND The little boy lost in the lonely fen. father. He kissed the child. in white. o'er my happy child! Sweet smiles. ha. but God. And the dimpling stream runs laughing by. father.

in thy face Holy image I can trace. Sleep. Sweet babe. Peace. Infant smiles are his own smiles. Then every man. Sweet babe. the human dress. DIVINE IMAGE To Mercy. and Love. Pity. the human form divine. Love. Sleep. And all must love the human form. for thee. Chase not slumber from thine eyes! Sweet moan. of every clime. happy child! All creation slept and smiled. and Love.Hover over my delight! Sweet smiles. Heaven and earth to peace beguiles. All the livelong night beguile. sleep. Turk. All the dovelike moans beguile. Pity. In heathen. Sweet moans. and wept for me: Wept for me. Is God our Father dear. sleep. Is man. dovelike sighs. For Mercy has a human heart Pity. And Peace. his child and care. or Jew. Heavenly face that smiles on thee! Smiles on thee. and Love. and Pity dwell. That prays in his distress. Pity. And Mercy. Mercy. While o'er thee doth mother weep. for all. Pity. Peace. Who became an infant small. happy sleep. Peace. once like thee Thy Maker lay. All pray in their distress. on all. When He was an infant small. HOLY THURSDAY . Peace. mother's smile. For Mercy. There God is dwelling too. sweeter smile. Prays to the human form divine: Love. Thou His image ever see. a human face. And Love. on me. Where Mercy. And to these virtues of delight Return their thankfulness.

When wolves and tigers howl for prey. wise guardians of the poor. Till into the high dome of Paul's they like Thames waters flow. but multitudes of lambs. these flowers of London town! Seated in companies they sit.'Twas on a Holy Thursday. To keep them all from harm: If they see any weeping That should have been sleeping. Where flocks have ta'en delight. Sits and smiles on the night. with wands as white as snow. And sit down by their bed. Receive each mild spirit. And joy without ceasing. like a flower In heaven's high bower. New worlds to inherit. And keep them from the sheep. in read. On each bud and blossom. their innocent faces clean. The evening star does shine. Or like harmonious thunderings the seats of heaven among: Beneath them sit the aged man. And each sleeping bosom. and blue. if they rush dreadful. green fields and happy grove. The moon. and green: Grey-headed beadles walked before. They pitying stand and weep. With silent delight. with radiance all their own. Where lambs have nibbled. lest you drive an angel from your door. Seeking to drive their thirst away. Now like a mighty wild they raise to heaven the voice of song. And there the lion's ruddy eyes Shall flow with tears of gold: And pitying the tender cries. They visit caves of every beast. The angels. They look in every thoughtless nest Where birds are covered warm. Unseen they pour blessing. . The birds are silent in their nest. Then cherish pity. Thousands of little boys and girls raising their innocent hands. And I must seek for mine. Oh what a multitude they seemed. They pour sleep on their head. The hum of multitudes was there. And walking round the fold: Saying: "Wrath by His meekness. Farewell. But. Came children walking two and two. silent move The feet of angels bright. most heedful. NIGHT The sun descending in the west.

by His health. let us play. the sun is gone down. Are driven away From our immortal day. Little boy. And laughing is heard on the hill." SPRING Sound the flute! Now it's mute! Bird's delight. and let us away. Here I am. Lark in sky. and weep. My bright mane for ever Shall shine like the gold. "Then come home. Merry voice." "No. no. sickness. I can lie down and sleep. bleating lamb. Nightingale. Or think on Him who bore thy name. As I guard o'er the fold. Let me pull Your soft wool. merrily. merrily. NURSE'S SONG When the voices of children are heard on the green. to welcome in the year. Little girl. Sweet and small. "And now beside thee. to welcome in the year. Till the morning appears in the skies. My heart is at rest within my breast. leave off play. Little lamb. Infant noise. to welcome in the year. Merrily. come. . And we cannot go to sleep. Cock does crow. my children.And. for it is yet day. Merrily merrily. Come. Merrily. Graze after thee. Come and lick My white neck. And the dews of night arise. Full of joy. And everything else is still. washed in life's river.-Merrily. So do you. Let me kiss Your soft face. Day and night. For. In the dale.

benighted.Besides. Joy is my name. Little wanderer. well." "Well. and forlorn. I sing the while. travel-worn." The little ones leaped. While the beetle goes his round: Follow now the beetle's hum. Sweet joy befall thee! A DREAM Once a dream did weave a shade O'er my angel-guarded bed." Pitying. I heard her say: "Oh my children! do they cry. hie thee home!" ON ANOTHER'S SORROW Can And Can And I see another's woe. Troubled. and laughed. Over many a tangle spray. Sweet Joy I call thee: Thou dost smile. not seek for kind relief? . go and play till the light fades away. in the sky the little birds fly. All heart-broke." What shall I call thee? "I happy am. Now return and weep for me. Dark. "What wailing wight Calls the watchman of the night? "I am set to light the ground. That an emmet lost its way Where on grass methought I lay. not be in sorrow too? I see another's grief. Do they hear their father sigh? Now they look abroad to see. And all the hills echoed. I am but two days old. and shouted. wildered. And then go home to bed." Sweet joy befall thee! Pretty joy! Sweet joy. but two days old. I dropped a tear: But I saw a glow-worm near. And the hills are all covered with sheep. INFANT JOY "I have no name. Who replied.

And not feel my sorrow's share? Can a father see his child Weep. sigh a sigh. fallen light renew! "O Earth. Wiping all our tears away? Oh no! never can it be! Never. And weeping in the evening dew. may destroy: fled an gone and moan. nor be with sorrow filled? Can a mother sit and hear An infant groan. an infant fear? No. near. doth feel the sorrow too. Who present. by: weep a tear. O Earth. That might control The starry pole. sees.Can I see a falling tear. Whose ears have heard The Holy Word That walked among the ancient tree. never can it be! And can He who smiles on all Hear the wren with sorrows small. sit the cradle near. and future. return! Arise from out the dewy grass! . past. Think not thou canst And thy Maker is not Think not thou canst And thy Maker is not Oh He gives to That our grief Till our grief He doth sit by us He is us his joy. becomes a man of woe. SONGS OF EXPERIENCE INTRODUCTION Hear the voice of the Bard. tear on infant's tear? And not sit both night and day. Hear the woes that infants bear-And not Pouring And not Weeping sit beside the next. And fallen. no! never can it be! Never. pity in their breast. Calling the lapsed soul. Hear the small bird's grief and care. never can it be! He He He He doth give his joy to all: becomes an infant small.

The watery shore. But a pebble of the brook Warbled out these metres meet: "Love seeketh only Self to please. Chained in night. Weeping o'er. But for another gives it ease." So sang a little clod of clay. And builds a heaven in hell's despair. "Turn away no more. To bind another to its delight. selfish fear! Can delight. Why wilt thou turn away? The starry floor. And her locks covered with grey despair. Or the plowman in darkness plough? "Break this heavy chain. Are given thee till the break of day. That does freeze my bones around! Selfish. The virgins of youth and morning bear? "Does spring hide its joy.Night is worn. That free love with bondage bound." ." THE CLOD AND THE PEBBLE "Love seeketh not itself to please. Eternal bane. Trodden with the cattle's feet. Joys in another's loss of ease. "Selfish father of men! Cruel." EARTH'S ANSWER Earth raised up her head From the darkness dread and drear. And builds a hell in heaven's despite. vain. When buds and blossoms grow? Does the sower Sow by night. And the morn Rises from the slumbrous mass. Starry jealousy does keep my den Cold and hoar. Stony. jealous. Her light fled. dread. I hear the father of the ancient men. "Prisoned on watery shore. Nor for itself hath any care.

Fed with cold and usurous hand? Is that trembling cry a song? Can it be a song of joy? And so many children poor? It is a land of poverty! And their son does never shine. Lovely Lyca lay.HOLY THURSDAY Is this a holy thing to see In a rich and fruitful land. Hearing wild birds' song. weep? Where can Lyca sleep? "Lost in desert wild Is your little child. THE LITTLE GIRL LOST In futurity I prophetic see That the earth from sleep (Grave the sentence deep) Shall arise. . Seven summers old Lovely Lyca told. come to me Underneath this tree. Do father. and seek for her Maker meek. And their fields are bleak and bare. If my mother sleep. In the southern clime. And the desert wild Become a garden mild. She had wandered long. For where'er the sun does shine. mother. Then let Lyca wake. And their ways are filled with thorns: It is eternal winter there. Where the summer's prime Never fades away. Nor poverty the mind appall.-Babes reduced to misery. "Sweet sleep. How can Lyca sleep If her mother weep? "If her heart does ache. And where'er the rain does fall. Babes should never hunger there.

And dream they see their child Starved in desert wild. Seven nights they sleep Among shadows deep. weak. Round her While the Bowed his tigers. While the lioness Loosed her slender dress. She could no further go. And the virgin viewed: Then he gambolled round O'er the hallowed ground. Leopards. weeping. Viewed the maid asleep. While the deserts weep. While I close my eyes.Lyca shall not weep. Pale through pathless ways The fancied image strays. Tired and woe-begone. seven days They traced the desert ways. The kingly lion stood. From his eyes of flame. . O'er this desert bright Let thy moon arise." Sleeping Lyca lay While the beasts of prey. "Frowning. The trembling woman pressed With feet of weary woe. Ruby tears there came. Famished. Arm in arm. Come from caverns deep. frowning night. And her breast did lick And upon her neck. play as she lay. And naked they conveyed To caves the sleeping maid. Hoarse with making moan. Rising from unrest. THE LITTLE GIRL FOUND All the night in woe Lyca's parents go Over valleys deep. lion old mane of gold. With hollow piteous shriek.

In my palace deep. Turning back was vain: Soon his heavy mane Bore them to the ground. "And because I am happy and dance and sing. Then he stalked around. And smiled among the winter's snow." he said. And taught me to sing the notes of woe. "Because I was happy upon the heath. "Follow me. On his head a crown. They look upon his eyes. Crying "weep! weep!" in notes of woe! "Where are thy father and mother? Say!"-"They are both gone up to the church to pray. Who make up a heaven of our misery." Then they followed Where the vision led. And wondering behold A spirit armed in gold." NURSE'S SONG . And are gone to praise God and his priest and king. On his shoulders down Flowed his golden hair. And saw their sleeping child Among tigers wild. And silent by them stands. "Weep not for the maid. Nor fear the wolvish howl Nor the lion's growl. They clothed me in the clothes of death. Till before their way A couching lion lay. armed with sorrow sore. But their fears allay When he licks their hands. Lyca lies asleep.In his arms he bore Her. Smelling to his prey. To this day they dwell In a lonely dell. They think they have done me no injury. Gone was all their care. Filled with deep surprise. THE CHIMNEY SWEEPER A little black thing in the snow.

Then am I A happy fly. thou art sick! The invisible worm. In the howling storm. your day are wasted in play. the sun is gone down. My face turns green and pale. The days of my youth rise fresh in my mind. That flies in the night. and night in disguise. night arise. Or if I die. and sing. And the dews of Your spring and And your winter THE SICK ROSE O rose. THE ANGEL I dreamt a dream! What can it mean? And that I was a maiden Queen Guarded by an Angel mild: Witless woe was ne'er beguiled! my children. If thought is life And strength and breath And the want Of thought is death. And his dark secret love Does thy life destroy. If I live.When voices of children are heard on the green. Am not I A fly like thee? Or art not thou A man like me? For I dance And drink. THE FLY Little Fly. Has found out thy bed Of crimson joy. Till some blind hand Shall brush my wing. Thy summer's play My thoughtless hand Has brushed away. . Then come home. And whisperings are in the dale.

tyger. I dried my tears. tyger. But my rose turned away with jealousy. Then I went to my pretty rose tree. he wiped my tears away. burning bright In the forests of the night. I was armed. And grey hairs were on my head. So he took his wings.And And And And I wept both night and day. . I wept both day and night. What dread hand and what dread feet? What the hammer? what the chain? In what furnace was thy brain? What the anvil? what dread grasp Dare its deadly terrors clasp? When the stars threw down their spears. he came in vain. burning bright In the forests of the night. Soon my Angel came again. What immortal hand or eye Dare frame thy fearful symmetry? MY PRETTY ROSE TREE A flower was offered to me. and armed my fears With ten-thousand shields and spears." And I passed the sweet flower o'er. Then the morn blushed rosy red. Did he smile his work to see? Did he who made the lamb make thee? Tyger. hid from him my heart's delight. What immortal hand or eye Could frame thy fearful symmetry? In what distant deeps or skies Burnt the fire of thine eyes? On what wings dare he aspire? What the hand dare seize the fire? And what shoulder and what art Could twist the sinews of thy heart? And. and fled. And watered heaven with their tears. when thy heart began to beat. And her thorns were my only delight. Such a flower as May never bore. THE TYGER Tyger. For the time of youth was fled. But I said "I've a pretty rose tree. To tend her by day and by night.

" writ So I turned to the Garden of That so many sweet flowers were shut over the door. and pleasant. and warm. And binding with briars my joys and desires. To the thistles and thorns of the waste. Seeking after that sweet golden clime Where the traveller's journey is done. Then I went to the heath and the wild. Where the Youth pined away with desire. Nor a thorn nor a threat stain her beauty bright. weary of time. weeping. Love bore. Who countest the steps of the sun. A Chapel was built in the midst. And the pale virgin shrouded in snow. And saw what I never had seen. THE GARDEN OF LOVE I laid me down upon a bank. The humble sheep a threat'ning horn: While the Lily white shall in love delight. THE LITTLE VAGABOND Dear mother. And they told me how they were beguiled. And a pleasant fire our souls to regale. And priests in black gowns were walking their rounds. And the gates of this Chapel And "Thou shalt not. Driven out. Besides. I heard among the rushes dank Weeping. the Church is cold. and compelled to the chaste. I can tell where I am used well. Where I used to play on the green. and aspire Where my Sunflower wishes to go! THE LILY The modest Rose puts forth a thorn. The poor parsons with wind like a blown bladder swell. I went to the Garden of Love.AH SUNFLOWER Ah Sunflower. dear mother. But the Alehouse is healthy. if at the Church they would give us some ale. Where Love lay sleeping. And tombstones where flowers should be. And I saw it was filled with graves. Arise from their graves. . But.

Till the selfish loves increase. THE HUMAN ABSTRACT Pity would be no more If we did not make somebody poor. A mark in every face I meet. Marks of weakness. In every cry of every man. In every voice. And we'd be as happy as birds in the spring. who is always at church. Nor ever once wish from the Church to stray. And it bears the fruit of Deceit. In every infant's cry of fear. Then the Parson might preach. And the hapless soldier's sigh Runs in blood down palace-walls. Soon spreads the dismal shade Of Mystery over his head. And mutual fear brings Peace. And Mercy no more could be If all were as happy as we. And the caterpillar and fly Feed on the Mystery. and give him both drink and apparel.We'd sing and we'd pray all the livelong day. nor birch. Would not have bandy children. And waters the ground with tears. like a father. nor fasting. Then Cruelty knits a snare. And God. Then Humility takes its root Underneath his foot. LONDON I wandered through each chartered street. . Would have no more quarrel with the Devil or the barrel. But most. rejoicing to see His children as pleasant and happy as he. and sing. He sits down with his holy fears. And blights with plagues the marriage-hearse. But kiss him. And spreads his baits with care. The mind-forged manacles I hear: How the chimney-sweeper's cry Every blackening church appalls. And modest Dame Lurch. Near where the chartered Thames does flow. through midnight streets I hear How the youthful harlot's curse Blasts the new-born infant's tear. and drink. marks of woe. in every ban.

how can I love you Or any of my brothers more? I love you like the little bird That picks up crumbs around the door. Bound and weary. A LITTLE BOY LOST "Nought loves another as itself. Like a fiend hid in a cloud. my wrath did end. . naked. In trembling zeal he seized his hair.-And into my garden stole When the night had veiled the pole. my wrath did grow. Helpless. And I watered it in fears Night and morning with my tears. piping loud. And it grew both day and night. Till it bore an apple bright. The gods of the earth and sea Sought through nature to find this tree. glad. INFANT SORROW My mother groaned. A POISON TREE I I I I was angry with my friend: told my wrath. And the raven his nest has made In its thickest shade." The Priest sat by and heard the child.Ruddy and sweet to eat. In the morning. and he knew that it was mine. I see My foe outstretched beneath the tree. Striving against my swaddling-bands. my father wept: Into the dangerous world I leapt. I thought best To sulk upon my mother's breast. Struggling in my father's hands. father. And I sunned it with smiles And with soft deceitful wiles. Nor is it possible to thought A greater than itself to know. And my foe beheld it shine. "And. Nor venerates another so. was angry with my foe: told it not. But their search was all in vain: There grows one in the human Brain.

And all admired the priestly care. Strangers came not near. Free from winter's cold. But his loving look. Like the holy book All her tender limbs with terror shook. And standing on the altar high. "Lo. Then. The weeping parents wept in vain: They stripped him to his little shirt. In the age of gold. what a fiend is here!" said he: "One who sets reason up for judge Of our most holy mystery. They agree to meet When the silent sleep Waves o'er heaven's deep. Filled with softest care. "Ona. And the maiden soon forgot her fear. Once a youthful pair. To her father white Came the maiden bright." The weeping child could not be heard. And bound him in an iron chain. in rising day. Naked in the sunny beams delight. was thought a crime. And burned him in a holy place Where many had been burned before. sweet love. To the holy light. Tired with kisses sweet. To thy father speak! Oh the trembling fear! Oh the dismal care . And the weary tired wanderers weep. Are such thing done on Albion's shore? A LITTLE GIRL LOST Children of the future age. The weeping parents wept in vain. Met in garden bright Where the holy light Had just removed the curtains of the night. Youth and maiden bright. Know that in a former time Love.He led him by his little coat. Reading this indignant page. pale and weak. On the grass they play. Parents were afar.

To rise from generation free: Then what have I to do with thee? The sexes sprang from shame and pride. And if the tender plants are stripped Of their joy in the springing day. And with false self-deceiving tears Didst bind my nostrils. And the skylark sings with me: Oh what sweet company! But to go to school in a summer morn. eyes. Worn through with the dreary shower.-Oh it drives all joy away! Under a cruel eye outworn. When birds are singing on every tree. With cruelty didst mould my heart. Or bless the mellowing year. Nor sit in learning's bower. By sorrow and care's dismay. And me to mortal life betray. The little ones spend the day In sighing and dismay. Didst close my tongue in senseless clay. in evening died. . The distant huntsman winds his horn. How can the bird that is born for joy Sit in a cage and sing? How can a child. when fears annoy. Thou. mother of my mortal part.-How shall the summer arise in joy. Nor in my book can I take delight. if buds are nipped. Ah then at times I drooping sit. But droop his tender wing.That shakes the blossoms of my hoary hair!" THE SCHOOLBOY I love to rise on a summer morn. But mercy changed death into sleep. And forget his youthful spring? Oh father and mother. And spend many an anxious hour. Or the summer fruits appear? Or how shall we gather what griefs destroy. When the blasts of winter appear? TO TIRZAH Whate'er is born of mortal birth Must be consumed with the earth. And blossoms blown away. Blown in the morn. and ears. The sexes rose to work and weep.

The human face a furnace sealed. Doubt is fled. The human heart its hungry gorge. Terror the human form divine.The death of Jesus set me free: Then what have I to do with thee? THE VOICE OF THE ANCIENT BARD Youth of delight! come hither And see the opening morn. Tangled roots perplex her ways. "A DIVINE IMAGE" was never included in the SONGS OF INNOCENCE AND OF EXPERIENCE. Dark disputes and artful teazing. Blake. APPENDIX A DIVINE IMAGE Cruelty has a human heart. Image of Truth new-born. The human dress is forged iron. And feel--they know not what but care. Folly is an endless maze. 1780 THEL . William Blake's THE BOOK of THEL THEL'S Motto Does the Eagle know what is in the pit? Or wilt thou go ask the Mole: Can Wisdom be put in a silver rod? Or Love in a golden bowl? THE BOOK of THEL The Author & Printer Willm. How many have fallen there! They stumble all night over bones of the dead. when they should be led. NOTE: Though written and engraved by Blake. and clouds of reason. The human form a fiery forge. And Jealousy a human face. And wish to lead others. And Secresy the human dress.

Descend O little cloud & hover before the eyes of Thel. the o'er tired The breath doth nourish the innocent lamb. Giving to those that cannot crave. and fed with morning manna: Till summers heat melts thee beside the fountains and the springs To flourish in eternal vales: they why should Thel complain. And I am very small and love to dwell in lowly vales: So weak the gilded butterfly scarce perches on my head Yet I am visited from heaven and he that smiles on all Walks in the valley. & tames the fire-breathing steed. thou new-born lily flower. . Ah! Thel is like a watry bow. And why it scatters its bright beauty thro the humid air. then sat down in her silver shrine. and like a parting cloud. like music in the air: Ah! gentle may I lay me down and gentle rest my head. yet I complain. and each morn over me spreads his hand Saying. and gently hear the voice Of him that walketh in the garden in the evening time. I charge thee to tell me Why thou complainest now when in one hour thou fade away: Then we shall seek thee but not find: ah Thel is like to thee. the voiceless. rejoice thou humble grass. Like a reflection in a glass: like shadows in the water Like dreams of infants. O little Cloud the virgin said. Like the doves voice. he smells the milky garments He crops thy flowers while thou sittest smiling in his face. ask the tender cloud. All but the youngest: she in paleness sought the secret air. And gentle sleep the sleep of death. Thel answerd. O thou little virgin of the peaceful valley. utter a sigh. And thus her gentle lamentation falls like morning dew. She ceasd & smild in tears. Thou gentle maid of silent valleys and of modest brooks: For thou shall be clothed in light. like transient day. and who shall find my place.I The daughters of Mne Seraphim led round their sunny flocks. The Cloud descended and the Lily bowd her modest head: And went to mind her numerous charge among the verdant grass. thy perfume. O life of this our spring! why fades the lotus of the water? Why fade these children of the spring? born but to smile & fall. Thy wine doth purify the golden honey. The Lilly of the valley breathing in the humble grass Answerd the lovely maid and said: I am a watry weed. Wiping his mild and meekin mouth from all contagious taints. like a smile upon an infants face. Queen of the vales the Lily answered. I pass away. and no one hears my voice. Which thou dost scatter on every little blade of grass that springs Revives the milked cow. To fade away like morning beauty from her mortal day: Down by the river of Adona her soft voice is heard. But Thel is like a faint cloud kindled at the rising sun: I vanish from my pearly throne. II. And it shall tell thee why it glitters in the morning sky. Why should the mistress of the vales of Har.

but thou can'st weep: Is this a Worm? I see they lay helpless & naked: weeping And none to answer. The Clod of Clay heard the Worms voice & rais'd her pitying head: She bowd over the weeping infant. they fly and seek their food: But Thel delights in these no more because I fade away And all shall say. then on Thel she fix'd her humble eyes. The weak worm from its lowly bed. I have loved thee And I have given thee a crown that none can take away. to find his partner in the vale. Thou mother of my children. III. Or did she only live to be at death the food of worms. trembling kneels before the risen sun. art thou but a Worm? I see thee like an infant wrapped in the Lillys leaf. how great thy blessing. Then Thel astonish'd view'd the Worm upon its dewy bed. Nothing remains. and smell the sweetest flowers: But I feed not the little flowers: I hear the warbling birds. yet I live and love. and binds his nuptial bands around my breast. It is to tenfold life. and her life exhald In milky fondness. when I pass away. Thou seest me the meanest thing. to peace. But how this is sweet maid. Dost thou O little cloud? I fear that I am not like thee: For I walk through the vales of Har. without a use this shining women liv'd. How great thy use. and so I am indeed: My bosom of itself is cold. O maid I tell thee. Lives not alone nor or itself: fear not and I will call. Come forth worm and the silent valley. pours his oil upon my head And kisses me. But I feed not the warbling birds. weigh my light wings upon balmy flowers: And court the fair eyed dew. to take me to her shining tent The weeping virgin. Ah weep not little voice. and thou shalt hear its voice. O virgin of the skies. Till we arise link'd in a golden band and never part: But walk united bearing food to all our tender flowers. And the bright Cloud saild on. to love.The Cloud then shewd his golden head & his bright form emerg'd. O virgin know'st thou not our steeds drink of the golden springs Where Luvah doth renew his horses: lookst thou on my youth. and of itself is dark. O beauty of the vales of Har. The helpless worm arose and sat upon the Lillys leaf. . And fearest thou because I vanish and am seen no more. And says. and raptures holy: Unseen descending. Art thou a Worm? image of weakness. and I cannot ponder. thou can'st not speak. and I cannot know I ponder. I know not. Hovering and glittering on the air before the face of Thel. none to cherish thee with mothers smiles. Then if thou art the food of worms. But he that loves the lowly. every thing that lives. to thy pensive queen. The Cloud reclind upon his airy throne and answerd thus. we live not for ourselves.

Till to her own grave plot she came. And I complaind in the mild air.txt or 574. Queen of the vales. and therefore did I weep: That God would love a Worm I knew. And said. And to return: fear nothing. Fled back unhinderd till she came into the vales of Har. and therefore did I weep. a whirlpool fierce to draw creations in? a Nostril wide inhaling terror trembling & affright a tender curb upon the youthful burning boy? a little curtain of flesh on the bed of our desire? The Virgin started from her seat.gutenberg. by William Blake *** END OF THIS PROJECT GUTENBERG EBOOK POEMS OF WILLIAM BLAKE *** ***** This file should be named 574. & there she sat down. & where Of every heart on earth infixes deep its A land of sorrows & of tears where never the northern bar: land unknown. listning to the voices of the ground. and punish the evil foot That wilful bruis'd its helpless form: but that he cherish'd it With milk and oil I never knew. & with a shriek. Why cannot the Ear be closed to its own destruction? Or the glistening Eye to the poison of a smile! Why are Eyelids stord with arrows ready drawn. Alas! I knew not this. listning Dolors & lamentations: waiting oft beside the dewy grave She stood in silence. The eternal gates terrific porter lifted Thel enter'd in & saw the secrets of the She saw the couches of the dead. And heard this voice of sorrow breathed from the hollow . and leave my shining lot. the matron Clay answered: I heard thy sighs. She wandered in the land of clouds thro' valleys dark. End of the Project Gutenberg EBook of Poems of William Blake.The daughter of beauty wip'd her pitying tears with her white veil. And lay me down in thy cold bed. the fibrous roots restless twists: smile was seen. because I fade away. Where a thousand fighting men in ambush lie! Or an Eye of gifts & graces showring fruits & coined gold! Why Why Why Why Why a Tongue impress'd with honey from every wind? an ***** This and all associated files of various formats will be found in: http://www. And all thy moans flew o'er my roof. tis given thee to enter. enter with thy virgin feet. IV. but I have call'd them down: Wilt thou O Queen enter my house.

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