Today I offer another favourite poem and an empowering quote by Mahatma Gandhi. Last week I posted a poem about daffodils by William Wordsworth. This week, my poem is written by another William, William Blake. It’s about a less delicate part of nature, a tiger and in fact, the tiger is a symbol used by Blake to ask a philosophical question.
Halloween is a time of year that, in the spirit of play,we embrace the ‘dark’ and all that scares us. The Tyger, by William Blake, speaks to the presence of deadly, powerful forces that bring terror to our hearts. He wonders about the creator of such a deadly creature and how he could have forged it into existence.
Tyger! tyger! burning bright In the forests of the night, What immortal hand or eye Could frame thy fearful symmetry?
In what distant deeps or skies Burnt the fire of thine eyes? On what wings dare he aspire? What the hand dare seize the fire?
And what shoulder, and what art, Could twist the sinews of thy heart? And, when thy heart began to beat, What dread hand? and what dread feet?
What the hammer? what the chain? In what furnace was thy brain? What the anvil? what dread grasp Dare its deadly terrors clasp?
When the stars threw down their spears, And water'd heaven with their tears, Did he smile his work to see? Did he who made the Lamb make thee?
Tyger! tyger! burning bright In the forests of the night, What immortal hand or eye Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?
William Blake, an English poet living from 1757 to 1827, published this poem in 1794. Although a powerful tiger isn’t necessarily evil, Blake appears to be using it as a symbol, to raise a question about good and evil and its Creator. To close, I looked for words of wisdom that address evil in our turbulent world and this is what I chose:
When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it–always.
― Mahatma Gandhi
That’s a message I want to hear: acknowledge the presence of evil in the world, but be faithful to a path of truth and love.
This post is being linked to Writer’s Quote Wednesday at Silver Threading. Please visit her post for an inspiring quote and links to other Writer’s quotes, which I am eager to read myself. And, to continue your quotations feast, visit Ronovan Writes’ #BeWoW post to read about Annette Rochelle Aben’s new book, A Haiku Perspective 2015, which was inspired by Ronovan Hester’s Weekly Haiku Challenge!