Two Londons


 

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View from Decimus Burton’s Wellington Arch, Hyde Park Corner,  Adrian Jones’s sculpture of ‘The Angel of Peace Descending in the Quadriga of War’

LONDON  2017

In all that bright and glorious sunshine,
Amongst those trees, those parks, those sculptural delights,
Hidden below that Impressive skyline,
Beneath and among those imposing sights,
Is as much deprivation still concealed
As that which was to Blake revealed?

( Pen and Wash drawing and the accompanying verse above are by WHB) 

What was revealed to William Blake as he wandered the streets of late 18th and early 19th Century London, he wrote about in the following poem.  It was first published in his ‘Songs of Experience’ in 1794.
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London-Seven Dial early 19th Century – Sketches by Boz

London    . . .   By William Blake

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.
In every cry of every Man,
In every Infants cry of fear,
In every voice: in every ban,
The mind-forg’d manacles I hear
How the Chimney-sweepers cry
Every blackning Church appalls,
And the hapless Soldiers sigh
Runs in blood down Palace walls
But most thro’ midnight streets I hear
How the youthful Harlots curse
Blasts the new-born Infants tear
And blights with plagues the Marriage hearse.

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7 thoughts on “Two Londons

  1. In Yorkshire this week with Tom And the dog staying with my brother so lots of muddy walks

    Maggie

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  2. An excellent poem, painting and post Roland. Having experienced both the Londons of which you and Blake speak I can concur with the feelings shared in both poems.

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  3. Wonderful, wonderful, wonderful!

    Another favourite of mine! Cx

    ________________________________

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