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Songs of Experience by William Blake - Essay Example

“Songs of Experience” by William Blake

This theme resonates through and through throughout the poems. From this theme, it is clear that the author of the poems is lambasting the illicit relationships that exist between the characters mentioned. The term forbidden denotes an issue that is morally unacceptable and a taboo to many cultures, therefore, forbidden love illustrates a situation whereby the characters are breaking some cultural taboos. This essay discusses the theme of forbidden love in detail by referring to the poems of William Blake’s “Songs of Experience”. The Songs of Experience are works that lament the manner in which adult experiences destroy the good that exists in innocence. It discusses the negative forces that exist in the world, and what happens when innocence fails to surmount these forces. According to the author, sexual immorality corrupts innocent love. The sexual immorality results due to the effects of jealousy, secrecy and shame. One poem, The Sick rose is an eight stanza poem whereby the persona is addressing a rose. The persona informs the rose that it is sick. The speaker mentions that an “invisible worm’ has found a way into its bed in the cover of the night. Due to this, the life of this rose is being destroyed. Of all the poems, this poem has noteworthy symbolism outlined. The Sick Rose by William Blake and Kitty Tsui’s, A Chinese Banquet are poems that discuss the theme of forbidden love, albeit in different settings and degrees. ...
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rose is unaware of the sickness. The point here is that love never recognizes about its situation or condition. The persona mentions that …”has found out thy bed..Of crimson joy”. The crimson joy being mentioned here is a connotation of illicit sexual pleasures and shameful sexual liaisons. In a nutshell, the love being outlined is unhealthy and perverted. This perfectly explains the theme of forbidden love in the sense that, even if two people are happy to share love, as long as it is a forbidden union, it will be deemed unhealthy and rotten. The worm that finds its way at night to the rose’s bed connotes a union that is unacceptable by society, hence the lovers go to the limit to ensure that they consummate the union. Despite doing this, the union will still remain unhealthy and forbidden. Forbidden love is morally unacceptable and is a sickening event according to Blake. The poem The Sick Rose mirrors the work of Kitty Tsui, A Chinese Banquet. Tsui also discusses forbidden love, albeit by dealing with issues in a direct manner without the use of symbolism like in The Sick Rose. Tsui’s poem analyzes the issue of acceptance with people with homophobia in Chinese households. The poem also analyzes the boundaries and challenges that gays and lesbians face in these Chinese societies. The author accepts the fact that lesbians and gays are becoming more popular in China, but the challenge is that these group of people are being discriminated by society because their actions are deemed as taboos by traditional Chinese families. The attitude of most households to gays and lesbians is that of shame and dissent. Even parents of children who belong to


“Songs of Experience” by William Blake are a set of short poems which have short lines and short verses, with the themes of tyranny, deceit, brutality, lack of freedom and openness in love, enslavement and forbidden love dominating…
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