Quotations From WILLIAM BLAKE


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  • When the voices of children are heard on the green
    And laughing is heard on the hill,
    My heart is at rest within my breast
    And everything else is still.
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, mystic. Nurse's Song (l. 1-4). . . The Complete Poems [William Blake]. Alicia Ostriker, ed. (1977) Penguin Books.

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  • A fool sees not the same tree that a wise man sees.
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, engraver. The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, plate 7, "Proverbs of Hell," (c. 1793), repr. In Complete Writings, ed. Geoffrey Keynes (1957).

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  • When the painted birds laugh in the shade,
    When our table with cherries and nuts is spread:
    Come live, and be merry, and join with me
    To sing the sweet chorus of 'Ha, ha, he!'
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, mystic. From SONGS OF INNOCENCE. Laughing Song (l. 9-12). . . The Complete Poems [William Blake]. Alicia Ostriker, ed. (1977) Penguin Books.
  • No bird soars too high, if he soars with his own wings.
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, engraver. The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, plate 7, "Proverbs of Hell," (c. 1793), repr. In Complete Writings, ed. Geoffrey Keynes (1957).
  • Without contraries is no progression. Attraction and repulsion, reason and energy, love and hate, are necessary to human existence.
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, engraver. The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, plate 3, "The Argument," (c. 1793), repr. In Complete Writings, ed. Geoffrey Keynes (1957).

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  • What is a wife and what is a harlot? What is a church and what
    Is a theatre? are they two and not one? can they exist separate?
    Are not religion and politics the same thing? Brotherhood is religion,
    O demonstrations of reason dividing families in cruelty and pride!
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, engraver. Jerusalem, plate 57, repr. In Complete Writings, ed. Geoffrey Keynes (1957).

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  • He who desires but acts not, breeds pestilence.
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, engraver. The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, plate 7, "Proverbs of Hell," (c. 1793), repr. In Complete Writings, ed. Geoffrey Keynes (1957).
  • Embraces are cominglings from the head even to the feet,
    And not a pompous high priest entering by a secret place.
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, engraver. Jerusalem, ch. 3, plate 69, l. 43-4 (c. 1820), repr. In Complete Writings, ed. Geoffrey Keynes (1957).
  • I wander thro' each charter'd street,
    Near where the charter'd Thames does flow,
    And mark in every face I meet
    Marks of weakness, marks of woe.
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, engraver. Songs of Experience, "London," (1794), repr. In Complete Writings, ed. Geoffrey Keynes (1957).
  • All futurity
    Seems teeming with endless destruction never to be repelled;
    Desperate remorse swallows the present in a quenchless rage.
    William Blake (1757-1827), British poet, painter, engraver. Complete Writings, ed. Geoffrey Keynes (1957). "Night the Eighth," The Four Zoas (1795-1804).
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