Blake seeks to provide the Golden String which can lead us through the labyrinth of our experience or his own poetry.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Roger and Kay Easson, writing in Milton A Poem by William Blake, view Blake's message as a reflection of the prophetic role he assumed. Blake quotes the Book of Numbers in saying "Would to God that all the Lords people were Prophets." Underlying Blake's writing is his response to the Lord's call for prophets.  

Page 18
is a prophetic narrative since with it Blake exposes perceptual errors and renovates perception by teaching visionary truth. This prophetic narrative is conveyed both by words and by designs; Blake weaves together the linear orientation of words and the spatial dimensions of the graphic arts. However, in neither words nor designs does Blake adhere 
  to orthodox sequences or patterns. that is we cannot read Milton 'in time,' from a first event to a final event. Nor can we read Milton 'in space,' from a first place to a final place. Blake structures his words and designs in intricate patterns of parallelism and inversion that lead toward the unity of all word and designs within his prophetic vision. For Blake, prophecy teaches that spiritual travel must renovate each moment of each day. The narrative in Milton asserts that a spiritual journey is made in time and space, but that it simultaneously renovates our perceptions of time and space. The journey that the character Milton undertakes is necessarily individual, but since it shares in the archetypal pattern of such paths, it is, as Blake confirms, mutual. Moreover, for Blake, all spiritual journeys begin and end in the love and mercy of Jesus, the Saviour, and the Saviour's love and mercy are present not at one time and place or in one miraculous event, as a time-bound Natural Religion would have it, but present for all times and in all places as the ever-present potential for regeneration."  

Yale Center for British Art
Book of Urizen
Copy C, Plate 2 

Page 170
"The prophet, therefore, may sing songs, tell stories, and write poems. He presents the divine vision, but he must always defend it, explain it, and teach his audience how to perceive it. Los, Milton and the Starry Eight are the teachers within the Brotherhood of Prophets. Ultimately, it is William Blake who unites both the 'Divine Revelation' of the Bard and the 'Litteral expression' of prophecy within his poem Milton, that all his readers may become prophets."  

Milton, Plate 2, (E 96)
 "Come into my hand    
By your mild power; descending down the Nerves of my right arm
From out the Portals of my Brain, where by your ministry
The Eternal Great Humanity Divine. planted his Paradise,
And in it caus'd the Spectres of the Dead to take sweet forms
In likeness of himself. Tell also of the False Tongue! vegetated
Beneath your land of shadows: of its sacrifices. and
Its offerings; even till Jesus, the image of the Invisible God
Became its prey; a curec, an offering, and an atonement,
For Death Eternal in the heavens of Albion, & before the Gates
Of Jerusalem his Emanation, in the heavens beneath Beulah        

Say first! what mov'd Milton, who walkd about in Eternity
One hundred years, pondring the intricate mazes of Providence
Unhappy tho in heav'n, he obey'd, he murmur'd not. he was silent
Viewing his Sixfold Emanation scatter'd thro' the deep
In torment! To go into the deep her to redeem & himself perish?  
What cause at length mov'd Milton to this unexampled deed[?]   
A Bards prophetic Song!"

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