Saturday, February 23, 2013

Star Wars According to William Blake

“I must Create a System or be enslav’d by another Man’s.
I will not Reason & Compare: my business is to Create.”

“Eternity is in love with the productions of Time.”

“A fool sees not the same tree that a wise man sees.”

“When Nations grow Old, The Arts grow Cold
And Commerce settles on every tree.”

“If the fool would persist in his folly he would become wise.”

“Excess in Youth is necessary to Life.”

“I have sought for a joy without pain,
For a solid without fluctuation – “

“Prisons are built with stones of Law
Brothels with bricks of Religion.”

“If the Sun & Moon should Doubt
They’d immediately go out.”

“Tiger! Tiger! burning bright
In the forests of the night,
What immortal hand or eye
Could frame thy fearful symmetry?”

"And o’er the dark desarts of Urizen
Fires pour thro’ the void on all sides
On Urizen’s self-begotten armies.”

“When the green woods laugh with the voices of joy,
And the dimpling stream runs laughing by;
When the air does laugh with our merry wit,
And the green hill laughs with the noise of it.”

“And the gates of this chapel were shut,
And ‘Thou shalt not’ writ over the door.”


“I went forth. I hid myself in black clouds of my wrath.
I call’d the stars around my feet in the night of councils dark.
The stars threw down their spears & fled naked away.
We fell.”

“And was Jerusalem builded here,
Among these dark Satanic mills?”

“They forged the sword, the chariot of war, the battle ax,
The trumpet fitted to the battle, and the flute of summer
And all the arts of life they changed into the arts of death.”

“Love seeketh not itself to please,
Nor for itself hath any care,
But for another it gives its ease,
And builds a Heaven in Hell’s despair.”

“One command, one joy, one desire,
One curse, one weight, one measure
One King, one God, one Law.”

“Thy friendship oft has made my heart to ake:
Do be my Enemy for Friendship’s sake.”

“A Machine is not a Man nor a Work of Art
Is Destructive of Humanity and of Art
the word Machination.”

“My Spectre around me night & day
Like a Wild beast guards my way
My emanation far within
Weeps incessantly for my sin.”

“Without contraries is no progression. Attraction and Repulsion,
Reason and Energy, Love and Hate, are necessary to Human Existence.”

“Pitying I wept to see the woe
that Love & Beauty undergo,
To be consumed in burning Fires
And in ungratified desires,
And in tears cloth’d Night and Day
Melted all my soul away.”

"The Angel that presided ov'er my birth
Said, 'Little creature, form'd of Joy and Mirth,
Go love without the help of any Thing on Earth'."

“Is this a holy thing to see
In a rich and fruitful land,
Babes reduced to misery,
Fed with cold and usurous hand?”

“For man has closed himself up, till he sees all
things thro’ narrow chinks of his cavern.”

“The iron hand crushd the Tyrant’s head
And became a Tyrant in his Stead.”

“And their sun does never shine,
And their fields are bleak & bare,
And their ways are fill’d with thorns:
It is eternal winter there.”

“No bird soars too high, if he soars with his own wings.”

“Energy is Eternal Delight.”

“I will not cease from Mental Fight
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand:
Til we have built Jerusalem
In England’s green and pleasant Land.”

“And wherever he wander’d in sorrows
Upon the aged heavens
A cold shadow follow’d behind him
Like a spider’s web, moist, cold and dim – “

“Energy is the only life, and is from the Body.”

“Abstinence sows sand all over
The ruddy limbs & flaming hair
But Desire gratified
Plants fruits of life and beauty there.”

“A man’s worst enemies are those of his own house and family.”

“O why was I born with a different face?
Why was I not born like the rest of my race?”

“I am not ashamed, afraid, or averse to tell you What Ought
to be Told. That I am under the direction of Messengers
from Heaven, Daily and Nightly.”

“The nakedness of woman is the work of God.”

“Can I see a falling tear,
And not feel my sorrow’s share?
Can a father see his child
Weep, nor be with sorrow fill’d?”

“Every Man is in his Spectres Power
Until the arrival of that Hour
When his humanity awake
And cast his spectre into a Lake.”

“Empire is no more! And now the lion and the wolf shall cease.”

“He who binds himself to a joy
Does the winged life destroy;

He who kisses the joy as it flies
Lives in eternity’s sunrise.”

Author’s note – This one has been in my mind a long time. William Blake was the poet who initiated English Romanticism, but he was also the first to create his own personal, independent myths. Joseph Campbell used to call this the age of Creative Mythology, where the stories were being crafted by the individual, from the bottom up rather than from the top down. It all started with this visionary poet. The last post about Camille Paglia mentioned Blake, and if you enjoyed this, you might also enjoy the Saga in a Paragraph.