dove tales freedom of expression
a.c.clarke chooses blake
A.C.Clarke, in the first of an occasional series, has chosen some words by another poet to express her feelings about peace and the preciousness of life.
This is clearly a theme she is much engaged with. At our Dia de Los Muertos event in November she talked about Cobra, a Tessa Ransford poem with a similar reverence for life.
From AMERICA, A PROPHECY
Let the slave grinding at the mill run out into the field
Let him look up into the heavens and laugh in the bnght air
Let the inchained soul, shut up in darkness and in sighing
Whose face has never seen a smile in thirty weary Years
Rise and look out; his chains are loose, his dungeon doors are open;
And let his wife and children return from the oppressor's scourge
They look behind at every step and believe it is a dream
Singing: The sun has left his blackness and has found a fresher morning
And the fair Moon rejoices in the clear and cloudless night
For empire is no more and now the Lion and Wolf shall cease
For everything that lives is holy
William Blake, poet and engraver, (1757-1827) is commonly regarded as a mystic, yet he lived at a time of enormous political upheaval, when the American Revolution of 1775 and the French Revolution of 1789 irrevocably changed the people's relationship with state and church and both his poetry and his engravings feature powerful social commentary and scenes of revolution and violence.