Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Plate 37 [41]

Gloucester and Exeter and Salisbury and Bristol: and benevolent
PLATE 37 [41]
Bath who is Legions: he is the Seventh, the physician and
The poisoner: the best and worst in Heaven and Hell:
Whose Spectre first assimilated with Luvah in Albions mountains
A triple octave he took, to reduce Jerusalem to twelve
To cast Jerusalem forth upon the wilds to Poplar & Bow:
To Malden & Canterbury in the delights of cruelty:
Jerusalem 37[41]

The Shuttles of death sing in the sky to Islington & Pancrass
Round Marybone to Tyburns River, weaving black melancholy as a
And despair as meshes closely wove over the west of London,
Where mild Jerusalem sought to repose in death & be no more.
She fled to Lambeths mild Vale
and hid herself beneath
The Surrey Hills where Rephaim terminates: her Sons are siez'd
For victims of sacrifice; but Jerusalem cannot be found! Hid
By the Daughters of Beulah: gently snatch'd away: and hid in

There is a Grain of Sand in Lambeth that Satan cannot find
Nor can his Watch Fiends find it:
tis translucent & has many
But he who finds it will find Oothoons palace, for within
Opening into Beulah every angle is a lovely heaven
But should the Watch Fiends find it, they would call it Sin
And lay its Heavens & their inhabitants in blood of punishment
Here Jerusalem & Vala were hid in soft slumberous repose
Hid from the terrible East, shut up in the South & West.

The Twenty-eight trembled in Deaths dark caves, in cold despair
They kneeld around the Couch of Death in deep humiliation
And tortures of self condemnation while their Spectres ragd
The Four Zoa's in terrible combustion clouded rage
Drinking the shuddering fears & loves of Albions Families
Destroying by selfish affections the things that they most admire
Drinking & eating, & pitying & weeping, as at a trajic scene.
The soul drinks murder & revenge, & applauds its own holiness

They saw Albion endeavouring to destroy their Emanations.
Erdman 183)[illustratiion, with inscription reversed:
"Each Man is in his Spectre's power
Until the arrival of that hour,
When his humanity awake
And cast his Spectre into the Lake."
(These lines appear in mirror image.)

The first paragraph is virtually incomprehensible to your humble interpreter, but then comes the dramatic and famous line

Two of the most dramatic and famous items in this post are:
1. "the grain of sand.."

"There is a Grain of Sand in Lambeth that Satan cannot find Nor can his Watch Fiends find it": Blake moved to Lambeth in 1790 and then produced
Songs of Innocence and Experience and the other great early works.

(Blake also said that of a Moment in each  day ......)
(Milton; Erdman 136)

2. The mirror image statement at the end.

Both of these statements have become important in my Blake vocabulary.
Oothoon was the heroine of Visions of the Daughters of Albion

Twenty-seven churches are named somewhere in Blake's poetry.
The 28th would supposedly complete the circle of destiny.

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