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William Blake's "London"

Page history last edited by Sarah Peterson 14 years ago

 

I wander through each chartered street,

Near where the chartered Thames[1] does flow,

And mark in every face I meet

Marks of weakness, marks of woe.

 

In every[2] cry of every man,

In every Infant's cry of fear,

In every voice, in every ban,

The mind-forged manacles I hear.

 

How the Chimney-sweeper's cry

Every black'ning Church appalls;

And the hapless Soldier's sigh

Runs in blood down Palace walls.

 

But most through midnight streets I hear

How the youthful Harlot's curse

Blasts the new-born Infant's tear,

And blights with plagues the Marriage hearse.

Footnotes

  1. River in London
  2. Repetition of "every" emphasizes the collective sense of despair within the community.

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