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The Illuminated Books of William Blake, Volume 2: Songs of Innocence and of Experience: Songs of Innocence and of Experience v. 2
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The Illuminated Books of William Blake, Volume 2: Songs of Innocence and of Experience: Songs of Innocence and of Experience v. 2

4.11 of 5 stars 4.11  ·  rating details  ·  22,836 ratings  ·  371 reviews

The core of William Blake's vision, his greatness as one of the British Romantics, is most fully expressed in his Illuminated Books, masterworks of art and text intertwined and mutually enriching. In 1949 the William Blake Trust was founded to bring these rare, in some cases unique, works to a wider general audience through the publication of superbly produced facsimiles o

Paperback, 212 pages
Published December 4th 1994 by Princeton University Press (first published 1794)
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Lit Bug
My first brush with Blake was through the impeccable poem London more than a decade back. Since then, I'd got to read more poems of his, all carefully chosen by the academicians, quickly putting him in my list of favorite poets. Then before I reached my twenties, I read this little collection, and liked it immensely.

Songs of Innocence was what I was looking for, with its naïve outlook on life, the idyllic pictures of innocence I was unwilling to leave behind on my trek to youth. I was enamored (
Jan 03, 2015 Florencia rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those in need of a peaceful place to breathe.
Shelves: poetry
...Folly is an endless maze;
Tangled roots perplex her ways;
How many have fallen there!
They stumble all night over bones of the dead;
And feel — they know not what but care;
And wish to lead others, when they should be led.

- William Blake, "The Voice of the Ancient Bard"

The smile of a child. The face of a lamb. The purity of maternal love. Solidarity. These are images chosen by Blake to convey his thoughts on innocence. When I think of innocence, I cannot help picturing in my head the greenest mea
Mike Puma
Oct 23, 2013 Mike Puma rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: you know who you are
A review, of sorts, may be found in Message 1.
William Blake’s short poems profess a narrative far beyond what actually exists on the page. They communicate with incredible power and economy, smashing to smithereens the false structures of existing beliefs and opinions. His poems are like gravel thrown into a pool, ripples radiating outwards indefinitely, stirring everything they touch.
Jason Gignac

I know, I'm very purply in my prose when I talk about books, and I have a tendency to say everything is beautiful. I know this probably takes away from the impact of when I really find something life-changingly perfect. Do not let my larkety-la-ti-da writing style in reviews, however, stop you from putting down whatever you're reading, and immediately adding this precious book to the store of books you've read.

I can honestly say that, if the other things William Blake wrote are as beautiful
Full of beautiful poems which intend to express human spirit restrained by conservative rules.Besides, I could feel the burning desires the poet wanted to express.

Among the poems I appreciated :


I laid me down upon a bank,
Where Love lay sleeping;
I heard among the rushes dank
Weeping, weeping.

Then I went to the heath and the wild,
To the thistles and thorns of the waste;
And they told me how they were beguiled,
Driven out, and compelled to the chaste.

I went to the Garden of Love,
Huda AbuKhoti
So my sister told me I am enjoying this because I have no experience in English poetry.. I assure you though, that this is no ordinary poetry book.

The book of contrast, I like to call it. Full of extremes at both ends. A joy to the heart in the innocence chapter. Then destroys it all and more with the experience chapter.

Amazing read! purely amazing!

You might feel a bit bored of the overly joyous innocence poems, but when you start reading the experience poems, the book becomes perfectly balance
Knar   Avetisian
Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Experience (1794) juxtapose the innocent, pastoral world of childhood against an adult world of corruption and repression; while such poems as “The Lamb” represent a meek virtue, poems like “The Tyger” exhibit opposing, darker forces. Thus the collection as a whole explores the value and limitations of two different perspectives on the world. Many of the poems fall into pairs, so that the same situation or problem is seen through the lens of innocence first and the ...more
Matthew DeCostanza
In turns heartfelt and alienating, warm and eerie.

The duplicity with which this book is written is its most defining characteristic, making it a direct reflection of the world we live in. It's short, but encompassing; it's safe to say that the breadth of emotions I felt in the hour I spent reading this book were more vivid and diverse than the emotions I'm going to feel this coming week.

My favorite William Blake anecdote says that when he was four years old he saw God peering into his bedroom wi
Muhammad Khaled
يجب قراءة أغنيات التجربة بعد أغنيات البراءة، عدم قراءة ديوانا بلايك بهذا الشكل تجعل العمل ناقصا، كلوحة فنية غير مكتملة. بالنسبة لي، أنجذب إلى الشعر الذي يصنع المفارقة الذكية، لذا لا أميل إلى شعر الوصف، بمدارسها المتعددة، منها الرومانتيكية، لا أنجذب إلى أشعار لوركا كثيرا، وقراءة أغنيات البراءة لبلايك فقط تضيف لي تجربة مملة أخرى. الغريب، أن أغنيات التجربة تنضم لنفس المدرسة، ولكنها قلّبت الصفحة على وجهها الآخر، مما صنع المفارقة، النظرة الأخرى للأشياء، مهد لها بلايك، بعنوان ذكي ( في محنة الآخر )، آخ ...more
Seen in this week's Private Eye:
Tiger! Tiger! Burning bright
In the middle of the night
What on earth was going on?
Perhaps we will never know
from Songs of Innocent Until Proven Guilty
Ryan Milbrath
William Blake is one of my favorite Romantic era poets. Shakespeare is the only Englishman that I have enjoyed reading more than Blake. England during the 1800s never gave its accolades to the genius of Blake while he lived. His paintings and his most important works like Marriage of Heaven and Hell and this one, Songs of Innocence and of Experience, never received their just do’s till after his death.

Songs of Innocence and Experience are poems composed on vibrantly colored and detailed plates.
William Blake, my favorite poet of all time. Always overshadowed by his fellow Romantic contemporaries, such as Wordsworth, much to my dismay and the detriment of poetry lovers everywhere.

Songs of Innocence and Experience is a must-read period, regardless of genres. Anyone with an artistic soul will only benefit from its beauty and perfection. It is truly an enriching experience.

The Chimney Sweeper is my personal favorite. I cry every time I read it without fail.
Mohamed Elshawaf
تلك هى تجربتى الثانية مع الشعر المترجم وغالبا الأخيرة...
تجربتى الأولى كانت مع شاعر أمريكى معاصر هو تشارلز سيميك، وهذه الثانية لشاعر إنجليزى من القرن الثامن عشر، كلتا التجربتان مريرتان ومخيبتان للآمال، ومضيعة للوقت.
ترجمة الشعر هو أسوأ ما يمكن تقديمه للقاريء والشاعر على السواء، فأقل ما يمكن أن تقدمه الترجمة للشعر هى السخافة..
روح الشعر فى اللغة.. إن فُقدت اللغة فُقدت الروح
إليك مثلا هذه القصيدة:
(آه أيتها الوردة، أنتِ مريضة!
الحشرة الخفية،
التى تطير فى الليل،
فى العاصفة التى تعوى،
قد عثرت على سريرك
ذى الب
I due contrari stati dell'anima umana: l'ingenuità e la disillusione, la speranza e la coscienza, il successo e l'oblio. Queste poesie vennero pubblicate e raccolte nell'ordine suggerito dal titolo; ovvero prima quelle relative all'Innocenza, colme di scene celestiali, gioie infinite, sorrisi e dolci speranze; poi quelle che trattano l'Esperienza: insicurezza, ipocrisia, ingiustizia, povertà, morte. Tutte, nessuna esclusa, riferite allo stesso dio - e quale entità si celasse dietro questa parola ...more
L'attenzione, l'amore e la dolcezza che william Blake rivolge ai bambini orfani, abbandonati e ammazzati dalla società mi ha fatto commuovere come poche poesie al mondo.

Ricordando che furono scritte in un tempo in cui i bambini orfani venivano utilizzati, senza scrupoli come spazzacamini ed infilati in canne fumarie spesso ancora roventi, molti morivano o ne rimanevano gravemente ustionati ...
In un tempo in cui i genitori abbandonavano i loro figli nella nebbia non potendoli sfamare ...
In un tem
Mike Jensen
I don't get Blake's reputation. I grant the genius of “The Tyger,” but 90% of the rest of the poems in this book are doggerel. The other 10% are doggerel mixed with a good idea gone wrong or a nice line or image mixed with some very bad writing. It is hard for me to understand why anyone but a Christian fundamentalist with a taste for trite rhymes or an English lit scholar would bother. This raises the question of why Tyger is so good. My blind spot, or did Blake strike gold once with most of hi ...more
Michael Palkowski
Blake's writing demands performance. Reading it occasionally gives the impression that it's antiquated, romanticist doggerel but it comes to life when it's removed from the dreary page. Listen to Allen Ginsberg sing these poems:
Joy and sunshine.


And their sun does never shine
And their fields are bleak and bare
And their ways are filled with thorns
It is eternal winter there

Guang Tse
Experience>Innocence, but also interesting was the dialectic between the two parts. I noticed for the first time the fearful symmetry of The Lamb and The Tygre. There's so much more going on under the surface, beyond the childlike rhymes.
Blake is brilliant...brilliant...brilliant. Probably because the spirit of Milton was possessing him by entering the big toe of his left foot just like he thought. I can't come up with any other reason for it.
Shaza Askar
My favourite English poet, William Blake (28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827), who was a painter too. Blake is now considered an influential figure in the history of poetry and visual arts of the Romantic Age. His poetry was of prophetic quality, in the sense of anticipating the future of social life, and his visual artistry was "far and away the greatest artist Britain has ever produced". In 2002, Blake was placed at number 38 in the BBC's poll of the 100 Greatest Britons.

A rebel all of his life
samar salman
This collection of poems will take you in it's rhythm and meaning to a delightful joy. It's divided into to parts: one is titled as "Songs Of Innocence" which is a soft, sweet, childish verses. And the second part:" Of Experience" is more virtual, real, gloomy, and painful. I have always loved William Blake strong unique paintings, and today I can say that I also loved his poems. Although, I may prefer his paintings more. All and all, these are some of the poems I liked most in this collection: ...more
Elyssa Szkirpan
Songs of Innocence and Experience by William Blake

I don’t completely understand why some people choose to take the classics, respect them for what they are on the shelf, and then shove them into a box in the back of the closet. I understand that some may feel the classics are a little over analyzed, but the more you read them, the more you comprehend them and the more you understand how very important they are in the grand scheme of the literary world.

Hence why I pulled my weathered copy of the
قراءة أغاني البراءة لويليام بليك تعتبر تجربة ناقصة. احتاج الشاعر إلى خمس سنوات ليدرك هذا النقص، ويتممها أخيرًا بأغاني التجربة. ثمة مفارقة عبقرية في قراءة الديوانين على التوالي. الفكرتان لا يفند أحدهما الآخر، بل يكملان بعضهما بطريقة تجعل منهما عملًا إنسانيًا متكاملًا. يرجعني ذلك لمفارقة كانط في "نقد العقل الخالص" و"نقد العقل العملي" في طرح نقدين الأول نتيجة تحليل الواقع والآخر نتيجة المعرفة الجوانية. والتناقض في الطرح دليل عبقرية كما يقال، وهو الملح الذي يحفظ الحقيقة من الفساد، على حد تعبير سبالد ...more

He was barely into his teens when he wrote some of this material. Amazing.

And he may have had magical powers.

Dig it:

Story goes that little William is showing some promise as an engraver and etcher. Mama and Papa Blake bring the kid over to an established, professional artisan with a nudge toward being his indentured servant. Kid gets to learn a trade, gets some contacts and a steady gig out of it, all's well with the world.

Well, after spending an afternoon with the engraver, Blake says (and
A short, lovely volume of poetry divided into “Innocence” and “Experience,” intending to show “the two contrary states of the human soul.” The Innocence poems are happy and childlike, full of hope for the future. I liked them the best. But they often have a corresponding Experience poem showing the darker side of life. There’s such a contrast spiritually between the two sections; it made me curious about Blake’s upbringing and how he saw God. I’d never read Blake before, so the poems were all fr ...more
Ala'a  Muhammad
William blake is my favorite romantic poet without doubt, his poetry really gives me physical ache which I find strange!
From Songs of Innocence my fave poem is THE CHIMNEY-SWEEPER every time I read it I ended either with tears in my eyes or a smile on my lips, maybe both, not sure. I just love it.
From Songs of Experience my favorite is the tyger, how silly I was when I thought it just a mere pleasant 'song' for ears. When in fact it was not a song at all, not even close to a one. I won’t go deep
Artem Huletski
Мы хотим играть на лугу в пятнашки,
не ходить в пальто, но в одной рубашке.
Если вдруг на дворе будет дождь и слякоть,
мы, готовя уроки, хотим не плакать.

Мы учебник прочтем, вопреки заглавью.
То, что нам приснится, и станет явью.
Мы полюбим всех, и в ответ — они нас.
Это самое лучшее: плюс на минус.

Мы в супруги возьмем себе дев с глазами
дикой лани; а если мы девы сами,
то мы юношей стройных возьмем в супруги,
и не будем чаять души в друг друге.

Потому что у куклы лицо в улыбке,
мы, смеясь, с
Raffi Hindoian
Its all balance.

I wonder what he would say if he saw the highly connected digital world of today.
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  • Lyrical Ballads
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  • The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock and Other Poems
  • The Complete Poems
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  • Goblin Market
  • Love Poems and Sonnets
  • Don Juan
  • W.H. Auden: Selected Poems
  • The Collected Poems
  • Collected Poems
  • The Collected Poems
William Blake was an English poet, painter, and printmaker. Largely unrecognised during his lifetime, Blake's work is today considered seminal and significant in the history of both poetry and the visual arts.

Blake's prophetic poetry has been said to form "what is in proportion to its merits the least read body of poetry in the language". His visual artistry has led one modern critic to proclaim h
More about William Blake...
The Complete Poetry and Prose The Complete Poems The Marriage of Heaven and Hell The Complete Illuminated Books Selected Poems

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“Love seeketh not itself to please, nor for itself hath any care, but for another gives its ease, and builds a Heaven in Hell's despair.” 224 likes
“The tigers of wrath are wiser than the horses of instruction.” 51 likes
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