Introduction to the Songs of Innocence

By William Blake 1757–1827 William Blake
Piping down the valleys wild 
Piping songs of pleasant glee 
On a cloud I saw a child. 
And he laughing said to me. 

Pipe a song about a Lamb; 
So I piped with merry chear, 
Piper pipe that song again— 
So I piped, he wept to hear.

Drop thy pipe thy happy pipe 
Sing thy songs of happy chear, 
So I sung the same again 
While he wept with joy to hear 

Piper sit thee down and write
In a book that all may read— 
So he vanish'd from my sight. 
And I pluck'd a hollow reed. 

And I made a rural pen,
And I stain'd the water clear,
And I wrote my happy songs
Every child may joy to hear

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Poet William Blake 1757–1827

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Romantic

Subjects Religion, Music, Living, Youth, Arts & Sciences

Poetic Terms Couplet

 William  Blake

Biography

In his Life of William Blake (1863) Alexander Gilchrist warned his readers that Blake "neither wrote nor drew for the many, hardly for work'y-day men at all, rather for children and angels; himself 'a divine child,' whose playthings were sun, moon, and stars, the heavens and the earth." Yet Blake himself believed that his writings were of national importance and that they could be understood by a majority of men. Far from being . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Religion, Music, Living, Youth, Arts & Sciences

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Romantic

Poetic Terms Couplet

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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