Category Archives: Poetry

Contemplating Blake

For quite sometime now, William Blake’s Poems and Prophecies had been Everyman's Library Editionstaring at me from my bookshelf. Therefore, I finally have started reading it. I have finished the Songs of Experience and The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. Each word of Blake seems to be worth contemplating for ages.

My first introduction to Blake’s words was through Colin Wilson’s The Outsider. Colin Wilson in this masterpiece not only described the social problem of ‘the outsider’, but also studied the various solutions lived by certain outsiders. One of the solutions was Blake. Blake happens to be one of those first artists who lived what has today become famous as the ‘spiritual religion’. His poems deal quite often with life’s ultimate questions, but with majestic simplicity. Like all artists, ‘truth’ holds a special position for him and after some arguments, he declares as a primary truth – Energy is eternal delight. Complete dismissal of all dogmatic religious practices, Blake lives in his own world where “Man has no body distinct from his soul“. “If the doors of perception are cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.” Blake probably was the first of the Prophets amongst the artists.

Every single poem in the collection titled Songs of Experience is a human portrait painted in beautiful words with Blake’s extraordinary insight into human condition. Some lines from the collection as evidence:

(Nurse’s Song): Your spring & your day are wasted in play, / And your winter and night in disguise.

(The Garden of Love): And Priests in black gown were walking their rounds, / And binding with briars my joys & desires.

(A Little Girl Lost): Know that in a former time / Love! Sweet Love! Was thought a crime.

I was amazed while reading The Marriage of Heaven and Hell for itshttp://www.flickr.com/photos/markdodds/ surprising parallels with Nietzsche’s thought. Energy is eternal delight. Pure Will, without the confusions of intellect – how happy, how free. Blake’s Energy is Nietzsche’s Pure Will. As Blake says, Energy is the only life and is from the Body, and reason is the bound or outward circumference of Energy.

Finally I leave you with a few lines from my favourite poem by Blake called The Fly. Interpretation of these are mysteriously wide and vague – insights into which are welcome:

If thought is life
And strength & breath,
And the want
Of thought is death,

Then am I
A happy fly
If I live
Or if I die.

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A Dead Laptop’s Poetry

They jumble within and die.
These thoughts which I cannot write.
Don’t read more than I say;
I am no writer, not yet anyways.

But then I read a lot, you know
and from the pages these thoughts flow.
See, there is no pseudo claim of origanility
for I am no thinker, just dealing with reality.

This technology, however crude
has helped us bloggers, a lot so shrewd
to make writers of us, with readership however low.
This transition happens, by no standards slow.

But what do I do now that my laptop is dead,
the reading is on, and the thoughts have not fled.
Therefore, they jumble within and die.
These thoughts which I cannot write.

My Infidelities with the Days

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My days complain of predictability,
ask the reason for my infidelity.
“Why are your mornings so full of hope?
Your romance with the evenings, I cannot cope.”

What do I say to my beloved days
from which I keep by choice away?
I am faithful to the mornings
for its promise of the days.
I am indulgent witht the evenings
for then the days are away.

But how do I explain
the incurability of this pain;
this infidelity, to my beloved days?
Oh, what reasons for choosing to live away!

What’s The Point?

If justice and equity are laws governing,
But they come at a price so stunning,
That the common man is left convulsing;
But cannot sue the black robes
Robbing him of his last penny.
Best things in life are never free;
But if justice is on sale
Then, my Lord, what’s the point?

If a man files a case
And the ruling hits his son’s face.
If justice delayed is justice derailed,
Still his Lordship seems unfazed.
And nothing can be done by the counsel’s grace.
Then, my Lord, what’s the point?

If courts function day and night
And the level of arguments reach new heights.
The counsel takes his imagination to great flights;
But the client, as usual, sighs.
If law remains but the spirit is lost,
Legislature survives at judiciary’s cost,
Then, my Lord, what’s the point?

If the language of law only conceals,
An ‘expert’ title being all that we seek.
If the man on street gets no better deal
Whether it be your intellect or be it the counsel’s zeal.
If precedents are set and maxims coined
But broken hearts are never joined
Then, my Lord, what’s the point?

Found this somewhere on the net, by some young chap in law school. I guess, the answer is, as Denny Crane says in Boston Legal, “You don’t ask. That’s the point.”