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Blake. The Clod And The Pebble

700 words - 3 pages

How does William Blake's 'The Clod and the Pebble', portray realistic ideas of our society?Blake's poem The Clod and the Pebble uses powerful imagery to portray opposing ideas of love.The clod which is soft and flexible and the pebble which is hard serve as mouthpieces for the opposing conceptions of love Blake presents to the reader.It is commonly accepted that the arrangement of the stanzas of the poem is vital as there are 3 verses. The first, seems to deal with the heavenly characteristics of Love which is selflessness . The second focuses on the more earthly characteristics of Love. The final stanza explains the hellish characteristics of love. Based on this, it can be said that Blake has created a kind of model of the universe/world, or a hierarchy of love as we can see Heaven on top, Earth coming second and then Hell.However, ...view middle of the document...

However, Some critics say that Blake is not intending to applaud the attitude of the clod as it stands for total subjugation and degradation which is not desirable because, in a relationship, certain degree of assertion and self respect is needed. The Christian definition of love is not total subjugation. I agree with this view.The lines:So sung a little clod of clay, Trodden with the cattle's feet;suggest total subjugation and lack of self worth.The clod tries unrealistically, to live in a the world of innocence, to ignore the existence of pebbles to 'build a Heaven in Hell's despair'. Therefore, it is not realistic that a person who is totally meek and passive is the idea partner for anyone. That is how I'd connect this poem to our society. I do not believe that the pebble is the best either. I believe that for a relationship to become wholesome, a bit of both have to come in. Not one extreme. Blake has taken two extremes and is attempting to show the reader that neither is good for a successful relationship.How can a clod serve as an image of something we are meant to admire when it does not seem to have a spirit? Applied to a human being the word suggests a complete absence of vitality, vivacity energy, creativity, personality character, self-esteem.As I mentioned before, Blake does not approve of the pebble either. It glories in its own selfishness and self-centred motives, like total a villain.The lines:Love seeketh only Self to please, To bind another to its delight,Too hard or too soft is not good.Joys in another's loss of ease, And builds a hell in heaven's despite."The middle path is what makes lives happy. This is what Buddhism teaches as well. I believe that William Blake being the philosopher he was, is inviting the reader to see the realities of human feelings & their effect on life, through his poem The Clod and the Pebble.Bibliography:Poem Text: http://www.online-literature.com/blake/614/ - The Clod and the Pebble by William Blake

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