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William Blake (1757-1827)

The Garden of Love


              1I went to the Garden of Love,
              2And saw what I never had seen:
              3A Chapel was built in the midst,
              4Where I used to play on the green.

              5And the gates of this Chapel were shut,
              6And `Thou shalt not' writ over the door;
              7So I turn'd to the Garden of Love,
              8That so many sweet flowers bore,

              9And I saw it was filled with graves,
            10And tomb-stones where flowers should be:
            11And Priests in black gowns were walking their rounds,
            12And binding with briars my joys and desires.


Online text copyright © 2003, Ian Lancashire for the Department of English, University of Toronto.
Published by the Web Development Group, Information Technology Services, University of Toronto Libraries.

Original text: William Blake, Songs of Experience (W. Blake, 1794). Blake's Illuminated Books, ed. David Bindman (Princeton, NJ: William Blake Trust; London: Tate Gallery, 1991-). See Vol. 2. PR 4142 B46 1991 Robarts Library. The text is from William Blake's Writings, ed. G. E. Bentley, Jr. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1978): I, 188. PRC 4141 B45 Robarts Library
First publication date: 1794
RPO poem editor: Ian Lancashire
RP edition: 2003
Recent editing: 1:2003/7/22

Form: quatrains
Rhyme: abcb


Other poems by William Blake