Visions of William Blake

Song Cycle by Robert Michael Spearing (b. 1950)

Word count: 405

1. Whether on Ida's shady brow  [sung text not yet checked]

Whether on Ida's shady brow, 
Or in the chambers of the East,
The chambers of the sun, that now
From ancient melody have ceas'd;

Whether in Heav'n ye wander fair,
Or the green corners of the earth,
Or the blue regions of the air,
Where the melodious winds have birth;

Whether on crystal rocks ye rove,
Beneath the bosom of the sea
Wand'ring in many a coral grove,
Fair Nine, forsaking Poetry!

How have you left the ancient love
That bards of old enjoy'd in you!
The languid strings do scarcely move!
The sound is forc'd, the notes are few!

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • RUS Russian (Русский) [singable] (Dmitri Nikolaevich Smirnov) , "К Музам", copyright © 1981, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. The wild winds weep  [sung text not yet checked]

The wild winds weep
  And the night is a-cold;
Come hither, Sleep,
  And my griefs [infold]1:
But lo! the morning peeps
  Over the eastern steeps,
And the rustling birds of dawn
  The earth do scorn. 

Lo! to the vault
  Of paved heaven,
With sorrow fraught
  My notes are driven:
They strike the ear of night,
  Make weep the eyes of day;
They make mad the roaring winds,
  And with tempests play. 

Like a fiend in a cloud,
  With howling woe,
After night I do crowd,
  And with night will go;
I turn my back to the east,
From whence comforts have increas'd;
For light doth seize my brain
With frantic pain.

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • CAT Catalan (Català) (Salvador Pila) , "Cançó esbojarrada", copyright © 2014, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
Note: said to have been written by Blake at the age of fourteen.
First published in Poetical Sketches, 1783
1 first published as "unfold" (Mitchell uses "unfold"); later changed to "infold"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

3. Youth of delight [sung text not yet checked]

Youth of delight, come hither,
And see the opening morn,
Image of truth new-born.
Doubt is fled, and clouds of reason,
Dark disputes and artful teasing.
Folly is an endless maze,
Tangled roots perplex her ways.
How many have fallen there!
They stumble all night over bones of the dead,
And feel they know not what but care,
And wish to lead others, when they should be led.

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4. To find the Western path  [sung text not yet checked]

To find the Western path,
Right thro' the Gates of Wrath
I urge my way;
Sweet Mercy leads me on
With soft repentant moan:
I see the break of day.

The war of swords and spears,
Melted by dewy tears,
Exhales on high;
The Sun is freed from fears,
And with soft grateful tears
Ascends the sky.

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • RUS Russian (Русский) [singable] (Dmitri Smirnov) , copyright © 1981, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

5. O holy virgin [sung text not yet checked]

O holy virgin! clad in purest white,
Unlock heaven's golden gates, and issue forth;
Awake the dawn that sleeps in heaven; let light
[Rise]1 from the chambers of the east, and bring
The honey'd dew that cometh on waking day.
O radiant morning, salute the sun
Roused like a huntsman to the chase, and with
Thy buskin'd feet appear [upon]2 our hills.
[O radiant morning appear on our hills]3

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Mitchell: "Arise"
2 Mitchell: "on"
3 added by Mitchell

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]