Friday, December 24, 2010

"A Little Girl Lost" and "The LIttle Girl Lost"


 Children of the future age,
 Reading this indignant page,
 Know that in a former time
 Love, sweet love, was thought a crime.

 In the age of gold,
 Free from winter's cold,
 Youth and maiden bright,
 To the holy light,
 Naked in the sunny beams delight.

 Once a youthful pair,
 Filled with softest care,
 Met in garden bright
 Where the holy light
 Had just removed the curtains of the night.

 Then, in rising day,
 On the grass they play;
 Parents were afar,
 Strangers came not near,
 And the maiden soon forgot her fear.

 Tired with kisses sweet,
 They agree to meet
 When the silent sleep
 Waves o'er heaven's deep,
 And the weary tired wanderers weep.

 To her father white
 Came the maiden bright;
 But his loving look,
 Like the holy book
 All her tender limbs with terror shook.

 "Ona, pale and weak,
 To thy father speak!
 Oh the trembling fear!
 Oh the dismal care
 That shakes the blossoms of my hoary hair!"


 In futurity
 I prophetic see
 That the earth from sleep
 (Grave the sentence deep)

 Shall arise, and seek
 for her Maker meek;
 And the desert wild
 Become a garden mild.

 In the southern clime,
 Where the summer's prime
 Never fades away,
 Lovely Lyca lay.

 Seven summers old
 Lovely Lyca told.
 She had wandered long,
 Hearing wild birds' song.

 "Sweet sleep, come to me
 Underneath this tree;
 Do father, mother, weep?
 Where can Lyca sleep?

 "Lost in desert wild
 Is your little child.
 How can Lyca sleep
 If her mother weep?

 "If her heart does ache,
 Then let Lyca wake;
 If my mother sleep,
 Lyca shall not weep.

 "Frowning, frowning night,
 O'er this desert bright
 Let thy moon arise,
 While I close my eyes."

 Sleeping Lyca lay
 While the beasts of prey,
 Come from caverns deep,
 Viewed the maid asleep.

 The kingly lion stood,
 And the virgin viewed:
 Then he gambolled round
 O'er the hallowed ground.

 Leopards, tigers, play
 Round her as she lay;
 While the lion old
 Bowed his mane of gold,

 And her breast did lick
 And upon her neck,
 From his eyes of flame,
 Ruby tears there came;

 While the lioness
 Loosed her slender dress,
 And naked they conveyed
 To caves the sleeping maid.

These Two poems by William Blake may seem similar at first because of there titles, “A Little Girl Lost” and “The Little Girl Lost”. I’m not quite sure why Blake chose to have two entirely different poems with titles almost exactly the same. The difference between the two was not obvious at first, I examined the poems over and over to decide why the titles were the same. I then realized that one poem used the word “A” when the other used “The”. The only reasonable explanation I can come up with is that “A” refers to any girl where “The” can specify one girl. “The Little Girl” indicates more meaning and reveals an acquaintance between two individuals, where “A Little Girl” can refer to several girls without knowing them. These two poems also both appear in the Songs of Experience. I believe the reason for putting the two poems in the Songs of Experience determines, that to understand the girls misfortune it must be experienced. The girl Ona in the poem “A Little Girl Lost” describes love in the rules of the church. By following Ona’s heart and not the rules set by the church Ona’s father and the church seem to abandon and disown her. Then the Lord forgives the maiden for loving outside of the church for greater sin has occurred. Lyca in “The Little Girl Lost” depicts that she has lived on her own for seven years. If she found out that her mother cared and missed her, Lyca would then go back home. Once night comes and Lyca has no answer from her mom sleep then takes over her. Nature then surrounds her as if trying to protect Lyca from harm. This seems to me as if God had sent nature out to watch over her so nothing could harm her any longer. These poems run together, simply because Ona was disowned by not following the rules of the church and Lyca knew what it felt like to live on her own trying to survive. The Songs of Experience relate to these two poems because with each other’s knowledge they could of made better choices. If Ona knew what it was like to live on her own she would of obeyed. Lyca would know that her mother cared and loved her. This solves the mystery of the titles for, “A” sets an example of obeying. Since, several girls disobey, they should learn from Ona’s mistake and start listening and following rules so their destiny turns out right. For the second title with “The” it explains the select few girls that actually disobey horrifically and eventually leave since their fate has changed courses. Afterwards, Lyca feels guilty for what she done and wants to go home but can not confront her mother.

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