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

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

VEGETATING LIFE [13]

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Four Zoas, Night I
Page 13

Four Zoas, Night I, PAGE 13, (E 308)
"They listend to the Elemental Harps & Sphery Song
They view'd the dancing Hours, quick sporting thro' the sky     
With winged radiance scattering joys thro the ever changing light

But Luvah & Vala standing in the bloody sky
On high remaind alone forsaken in fierce jealousy                
They stood above the heavens forsaken desolate suspended in blood
Descend they could not. nor from Each other avert their eyes
Eternity appeard above them as One Man infolded
In Luvah[s] robes of blood & bearing all his afflictions
As the sun shines down on the misty earth Such was the Vision    

But purple night and crimson morning & golden day descending
Thro' the clear changing atmosphere display'd green fields among
The varying clouds, like paradises stretch'd in the expanse
With towns & villages and temples, tents sheep-folds and pastures
Where dwell the children of the elemental worlds in harmony,     
Not long in harmony they dwell, their life is drawn away
And wintry woes succeed; successive driven into the Void
Where Enion craves: successive drawn into the golden feast

And Los & Enitharmon sat in discontent & scorn
The Nuptial Song arose from all the thousand thousand spirits
Over the joyful Earth & Sea, and ascended into the Heavens
For Elemental Gods their thunderous Organs blew; creating
Delicious Viands. Demons of Waves their watry Eccho's woke!
Bright Souls of vegetative life, budding and blossoming"

In this scene the location has shifted. We find ourselves viewing the Elemental, not the Eternal realities. This is the world of Time and Space of 'dancing Hours, quick sporting thro' the sky.' Seen as vision are Luvah and Vala poised above the world which has not yet felt the pain and strife they will bring.

The nuptial feast of Los and Enitharmon will introduce to the Elemental world 'Bright Souls of vegetative life, budding and blossoming.' Los and Enitharmon are seated at the table as time and space, but they are about to take on different forms. They will become the vehicles, chariots, which carry souls from Eternity to the Elemental world as vegetated beings.

In Milton Percival's William Blake's Circle of Destiny, on Page 166 we read:

"And the self - being outward and feminine and natural - is there to instigate these errors; and the woman is there to be their instrument.

When these and other forces come into action, there follows Blake's equivalent to Milton's war in heaven, and of the Greek's war of the Gods. In the Four Zoas four gods and four goddesses contend together. The archconspirators are Urizen and Luvah. Tharmas (the body) is a helpless and innocent victim. Enion, his outer self, retreats as far as possible to go - into the dark extremities  of the world, the mental conception of abstract matter. Tharmas becomes no more than the vital principle of a Stoic or a deistic world. Los and Enitharmon also pay the price, having to descend into the world of Generation. Urthona's body falls and becomes a serpent, the prototype of the serpentine religions." 

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