Going forth to faire free, the ninth poem in Linda Chown’s Ten-Part William Blake Series

 

Angel of the Divine Presence Bringing
Eve to Adam, William Blake
(The Creation of Eve and She shall be Called Woman), Ca.1803 Courtesy of the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art / public domain

“The soul of sweet delight, can never be defiled.” The Marriage of Heaven and Hell, William Blake



William Blake painted lots of men with burly thighs
He painted endings & impasses, full of weepings, warrings and sighs,
Showed us discontent and turbulence much, often, and more.
Because, as he knew of himself, ‘for double the vision my Eyes do see
And a double vision is always with me.’ As one does, he gets stuck in that place of mourning, like we do.
But he came forth back. To beginnings. Painting his “The Nativity,”
his baby Jesus spun flew out of birth through the air, arms stretched open wide,
Here in this balanced bringing Eve here, the birth-hood of woman.
No angry stretched fight-ready faces, no muscled thighs on the ready.

What a field of eyes, an effusion of gentle, this place of peaceful,
so fresh it looks transparent. Nothing weighed this down.
No rib mangling or second best. This is just fresh air.
Adam in some boyish expectation and Eve coming down curly,
Her heart and body sweet singing naked.
Down down down is up up up, it seems, a way forward to.
Birds beaked colors that faded gentle blue.
And Blake knew of misogyny and androgyny
But he let himself paint here a new equality story:
“Love and harmony combine,
And around our souls combine.”
And he turns open nakedness into a blessing
Natural and sacred. Sweet sweet sweet.

© 2019, Linda Chown

The other poems in Linda’s ongoing Blake-poem series:

  1. Refections into William Blake’s “Brutus and Caesar’s Ghost,” Linda Chown
  2. Cohering Clashes: Wiliam Blake’s “The Red Dragon and The Woman Clothed in the Sun,” Linda Chown
  3. This New Ending of the Beginning: William Blake’s “The Body of Abel Found by Adam and Eve,” Linda Chown
  4. Looking Up High: “The Wood of the Self-Murderers: The Harpies, and The Suicides,”Linda Chown
  5. Double Trouble: Lamech and His Two Wives, Linda Chown
  6. The Sun in His Wrath, Linda Chown
  7. Touching Without Holding, Linda Chown
  8. The Sun Has Left His Blackness, Linda Chown


I am delighted to let you know that Linda Chown’s Narrative Authority and Homeostasis in the Novels of Doris Lessing and Carmen Martín Gaite (Routledge Library Editions: Modern Fiction) is now available through Amazon in hardcover and Kindle. Linda tells me a budget-wise paperback edition will be available in six-to-eight months.

This study, originally published in 1990, assesses a shift in the presentation of self-consciousness in two pairs of novels by Doris Lessing and Carmen Martín Gaite: 1) Lessing’s The Summer Before the Dark(1973) and Martín Gaite’s Retahílas (1974) and 2) Lessing’s The Memoirs of a Survivor (1974) and Martín Gaite’s The Back Room (1978). Three major structural divisions facilitate examining implications of the novels for 1) feminism 2) literary narrative and 3) the lives of people-at-large. / J.D.

Linda’s Amazon Page is HERE.

LInda E. Chown

LINDA E. CHOWN grew up in Berkeley, Ca. in the days of action. Civil Rights arrests at Sheraton Palace and Auto Row.  BA UC Berkeley Intellectual History; MA Creative Writing SFSU; PHd Comparative Literature University of Washington. Four books of poetry. Many poems published on line at Numero Cinq, Empty Mirror, The Bezine, Dura, Poet Head and others. Many articles on Oliver Sachs, Doris Lessing, Virginia Woolf, and many others. Twenty years in Spain with friends who lived through the worst of Franco. I was in Spain (Granada, Conil and Cádiz) during Franco’s rule, there the day of his death when people took to the streets in celebration. Interviewed nine major Spanish Women Novelists, including Ana María Matute and Carmen Laforet and Carmen Martín Gaite.


Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights and encourages activist poetry.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook / Medium

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications: Five by Jamie Dedes on The World Literature Blog,  Jamie Dedes, Versifier of Truth, Womawords Literary Press, November 19, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019


“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton

The Sun Has Left His Blackness, the eighth poem in Linda Chown’s Ten-Part William Blake Series

The title  page of America a Prophecy, copy A (printed 1795), collection the Morgan Library
/ Public Domain

He was the loom’s loom,
spinning the fiber of revelation;
offering songs of social injustice,
the sexual potency of nature,
and the blessedness of the lamb.
Patti Smith



Like in a rocking chair on the edge of time,
this painting an overture to freedom, a ladle of love,
a luminous nest of linking ladders. Each level going up united.
It’s for to cherish this visual calmness as Blake’s visionary glory.
While his poetic prophecy may seethe with crackling doubt and dissent,
revolutionary odes, contentious acts of history and deceit,
This, the first painting with his name spelled out.
Blake fondly calls these sweet colors “illuminated paintings”
where he lays out his revolutionary love in peopled play.

It’s as though we’re inside an urban subway station
looking up. With Blake, it’s always some kind of looking.
People and how they do what matter in Blake’s sight.
Here, people spread about touching everywhere
in the kind of gentle that cooperation brings.
Fallen warriors in medieval garb, nude woman pointing to this poem.
Women reading, consoling, kinding.
This poetic prophecy one of Blake’s cosmic mythologies:
Orc’s refulgent passion grazes Urizen’s linearity.
Blake charts a new course for mental liberation.
The newspaper-like headline compels because it hearkens
a linking, a jumping up above and caring down below.
The prophetic poem contains fierce strife among nations and type.
But this sweeping image unfolds sweet closeness.
A new, all American revolutionary delight.

As Blake writes: “the fair Moon rejoices
in the clear & cloudless night.” And what a new light!
How lovely the people together democratic,
concentrating in peace, as though Thomas Paine bathed them
in common sense, and faith, hope, and charity.
Aware of the novelty of cultural freedom, Blake affirms,
“Let the inchained soul shut up in darkness and in sighing,
Rise and look out, his chains are loose, his dungeon doors are open.
Like Walt Whitman, for Blake, the sacred “loom’s loom,” the center sphere,
this image affirms a new vision of democracy, of human affairs:
a belief that “For everything that lives is holy, life delights in life.”

© 2019, Linda Chown

The other poems in Linda’s ongoing Blake-poem series:

  1. Refections into William Blake’s “Brutus and Caesar’s Ghost,” Linda Chown
  2. Cohering Clashes: Wiliam Blake’s “The Red Dragon and The Woman Clothed in the Sun,” Linda Chown
  3. This New Ending of the Beginning: William Blake’s “The Body of Abel Found by Adam and Eve,” Linda Chown
  4. Looking Up High: “The Wood of the Self-Murderers: The Harpies, and The Suicides,”Linda Chown
  5. Double Trouble: Lamech and His Two Wives, Linda Chown
  6. The Sun in His Wrath, Linda Chown
  7. Touching Without Holding, Linda Chown


I am delighted to let you know that Linda Chown’s Narrative Authority and Homeostasis in the Novels of Doris Lessing and Carmen Martín Gaite (Routledge Library Editions: Modern Fiction) is now available through Amazon in hardcover and Kindle. Linda tells me a budget-wise paperback edition will be available in six-to-eight months.

This study, originally published in 1990, assesses a shift in the presentation of self-consciousness in two pairs of novels by Doris Lessing and Carmen Martín Gaite: 1) Lessing’s The Summer Before the Dark(1973) and Martín Gaite’s Retahílas (1974) and 2) Lessing’s The Memoirs of a Survivor (1974) and Martín Gaite’s The Back Room (1978). Three major structural divisions facilitate examining implications of the novels for 1) feminism 2) literary narrative and 3) the lives of people-at-large. / J.D.

Linda’s Amazon Page is HERE.


Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights and encourages activist poetry.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook / Medium

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications: Jamie Dedes, Versifier of Truth, Womawords Literary Press, November 19, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019


“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton

Touching Without Holding, the seventh poem in Linda Chown’s William Blake Series

Lear and Cordlia in Prison c. 1779 / courtesy of the Tate / Image released under Creative Commons CC-BY-NC-ND (3.0 Unported) License this image

He who binds to himself a joy
Does the winged life destroy;
But he who kisses the joy as it flies
Lives in eternity’s sun rise.
William Blake



How this softer Blake burns.
Who’s to say how
to know this
way beyond way?
This tremendous reaching,
feeling sticking out, conspicuous.
Once, Vita Sackville-West dove
herself far, like Blake,
after a new balance,
to hold onto stasis,
memorialize apotheoses,
and make making more momentous.

Her book “All Passion Spent,”
probes the very soul wrench
of this stillborn painting
whose people stay fully
clothed yet fully undone
in silent grief beyond saying.
Blake gives Lear and Cordelia
the whole stage to lie about in,
bathed in a clash of terribly gentle color
and terribly gruesome agitation.

This father and daughter
touch without holding,
athwart in a pain beyond knowing:
they cannot face the other nor touch.
They grip themselves instead,
fingers heavy and listless
Keen faces screaming, soundless
like inside a stranger’s coffin.

Told once to be “less extravagant,” Blake gives even more
intensely in simplicity, this way beyond the way beyond.
In the gentle pastels, passion roils, boils all the more.
This frozen love fills everything up, all the bareness.
They touch on in the tragedy without holding,
in a barren consummation.
Lost in a lightyear of lonely.

© 2019, Linda Chown

“We never actually see Lear and Cordelia in prison in Shakespeare’s King Lear, but a scene like this appears in Nahum Tate’s adaptation of the play, and Blake might have seen a performance in this, the only version staged in the eighteenth century. However, Martin Butlin thinks a more likely source is John Milton’s History of Britain, where Lear is the last of the descendants of Brutus and the first King of England, thus making this early work by Blake part of a series of pictures he planned to call The History of England, a small book of Engravings (31).”

The other poems in Linda’s ongoing Blake-poem series:

  1. Refections into William Blake’s “Brutus and Caesar’s Ghost,” Linda Chown
  2. Cohering Clashes: Wiliam Blake’s “The Red Dragon and The Woman Clothed in the Sun,” Linda Chown
  3. This New Ending of the Beginning: William Blake’s “The Body of Abel Found by Adam and Eve,” Linda Chown
  4. Looking Up High: “The Wood of the Self-Murderers: The Harpies, and The Suicides,”Linda Chown
  5. Double Trouble: Lamech and His Two Wives, Linda Chown
  6. The Sun in His Wrath, Linda Chown


I am delighted to announce today that Linda Chown’s Narrative Authority and Homeostasis in the Novels of Doris Lessing and Carmen Martín Gaite (Routledge Library Editions: Modern Fiction) is now available through Amazon in hardcover and Kindle. Linda tells me a budget-wise paperback edition will be available in six-to-eight months.

This study, originally published in 1990, assesses a shift in the presentation of self-consciousness in two pairs of novels by Doris Lessing and Carmen Martín Gaite: 1) Lessing’s The Summer Before the Dark (1973) and Martín Gaite’s Retahílas (1974) and 2) Lessing’s The Memoirs of a Survivor (1974) and Martín Gaite’s The Back Room (1978). Three major structural divisions facilitate examining implications of the novels for 1) feminism 2) literary narrative and 3) the lives of people-at-large. / J.D.

Linda’s Amazon Page is HERE.

Linda Chown



LINDA E. CHOWN grew up in Berkeley, Ca. in the days of action. Civil Rights arrests at Sheraton Palace and Auto Row.  BA UC Berkeley Intellectual History; MA Creative Writing SFSU; PHd Comparative Literature University of Washington. Four books of poetry. Many poems published on line at Numero Cinq, Empty Mirror, The BeZine, Dura, Poet Head and others. Many articles on Oliver Sachs, Doris Lessing, Virginia Woolf, and many others. Twenty years in Spain with friends who lived through the worst of Franco. I was in Spain (Granada, Conil and Cádiz) during Franco’s rule, there the day of his death when people took to the streets in celebration. Interviewed nine major Spanish Women Novelists, including Ana María Matute and Carmen Laforet and Carmen Martín Gaite.



Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights and encourages activist poetry.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook / Medium

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019


“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton

 

The Sun in His Wrath, the sixth poem in Linda Chown’s William Blake series

Image courtesy of and copyright The Morgan Library & Museum , William Blakes World/ William Blake (1757–1827)
“The Sun in His Wrath”

Blake’s Stage Directions : [“Milton led by Melancholy into the Groves away from the Suns flaring Beams who is seen in the Heavens throwing his darts & flames of fire The Spirits of the Trees on each side are seen under the domination of Insects raised by the Suns heat.”]



It is my honor and pleasure to bring you the sixth in what will be a series of ten Blake poems by the extraordinary American poet, Linda Chown.  /. J.D.

How this splurge of Blake’s fairytale painting haunts my soul
in its wispy lingering transcendental colors and mystery.
Spontaneous Blake always makes me want to study,
to know his axes whole and catch more turns
layered and hidden inside such trenchant color treasure.
It is like I need a whole new key to see
who’s who and what in this vast Cartesian shakedown.

Body and soul, heat and shade, green and orange
vibrate in my watch. Melancholy walks with book-bound
Milton in all his academic hesitation he goes
under Apollo cavorting his leg-spread body around.
See him again. Look how he mates the sun.
As always, Blake layers his 360 degrees
to let more come through. That strange crooked melon sun
draws these serious people and insects into opaque light.
Blake knew Milton would hide in his robes, wouldn’t he?
This world is all too fecund for him to see.
And this timidity cranks this sun energy crooked
The all mental mind that encloses itself
And hides in a forest crocks the sun’s heart-heat

Blake joyfully proffered once:
“He who kisses joy as it flies by
will live in eternity’s sunrise.”
No sunrise here, or joyful kissing.
Melancholy and a lot of missing.
This haunting half-hearted vision of intensity,
this twisted sun face stuck squeezed and squinting.

© 2019, Linda Chown

The other poems in Linda’s ongoing Blake-poem series:

  1. Refections into William Blake’s “Brutus and Caesar’s Ghost,” Linda Chown
  2. Cohering Clashes: Wiliam Blake’s “The Red Dragon and The Woman Clothed in the Sun,” Linda Chown
  3. This New Ending of the Beginning: William Blake’s “The Body of Abel Found by Adam and Eve,” Linda Chown
  4. Looking Up High: “The Wood of the Self-Murderers: The Harpies, and The Suicides,”Linda Chown
  5. Double Trouble: Lamech and His Two Wives, Linda Chown

Linda Chown

LINDA E. CHOWN grew up in Berkeley, Ca. in the days of action. Civil Rights arrests at Sheraton Palace and Auto Row.  BA UC Berkeley Intellectual History; MA Creative Writing SFSU; PHd Comparative Literature University of Washington. Four books of poetry. Many poems published on line at Numero Cinq, Empty Mirror, The BeZine, Dura, Poet Head and others. Many articles on Oliver Sachs, Doris Lessing, Virginia Woolf, and many others. Twenty years in Spain with friends who lived through the worst of Franco. I was in Spain (Granada, Conil and Cádiz) during Franco’s rule, there the day of his death when people took to the streets in celebration. Interviewed nine major Spanish Women Novelists, including Ana María Matute and Carmen Laforet and Carmen Martín Gaite.


Jamie Dedes. I’m a freelance writer, poet, content editor, and blogger. I also manage The BeZine and its associated activities and The Poet by Day jamiededes.com, an info hub for writers meant to encourage good but lesser-known poets, women and minority poets, outsider artists, and artists just finding their voices in maturity. The Poet by Day is dedicated to supporting freedom of artistic expression and human rights and encourages activist poetry.  Email thepoetbyday@gmail.com for permissions, commissions, or assignments.

About / Testimonials / Disclosure / Facebook / Medium

Recent and Upcoming in Digital Publications Poets Advocate for Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, How 100,000 Poets Are Fostering Peace, Justice, and Sustainability, YOPP! * The Damask Garden, In a Woman’s Voice, August 11, 2019 / This short story is dedicated to all refugees. That would be one in every 113 people. * Five poems, Spirit of Nature, Opa Anthology of Poetry, 2019 * From the Small Beginning, Entropy Magazine (Enclave, #Final Poems), July 2019 * Over His Morning Coffee, Front Porch Review, July 2019 * Three poems, Our Poetry Archive, September 2019


“Every pair of eyes facing you has probably experienced something you could not endure.”  Lucille Clifton