Certainly, for Blake’s most powerful and famous poems, The Garden of Love seems to combine a very real sense of reality.
A sense of the concrete, precision in the speaker’s experience, and laid on top of it a kind of mysterious, mystical, spiritual, symbolic experience as well.
The melding of that leaves us with a very haunting ending, that is, is frightful and fearful towards religion, towards control, and makes us question really what is?
What is the church’s relationship with love, I went to God in of love, and saw what I had never seen.
This line is crucial to the poem. Has the speaker never noticed? What is in this poem? Or has something changed.
And I think that Blake has made the language abstract or ambiguous, for for a reason.
Because this garden of love this place is a could be, you know, a physical garden, as I said.
And it’s a symbolic place for what love is the garden wherein love occurs, love not being a physical place in our lives.
But for Blake in this poem, it is a chapel was built in the middle where I used to play on the green so it looks like something’s changed.
A chapel has been built, admits this pastoral setting, the church has interfered and not only that the gates of this chapel were shut and now shalt not rip over the door.
We have closed off. We have rules, forbidden rules.
It’s the Old Testament Thou shalt not read over the door but not thou shall not what it’s just a forbidden of everything to you won’t love you won’t be it’s not simply the 10 commandments forbidden and ordering.
It’s just the crossing out the for the forbidden nature of things, that denial.
So in response to this being shot and closed in the rules.
I turned to the garden of love that so many sweet flowers bore. So I turned away from the church, back to the pastoral, back to the garden, back to the greenback to the flowers, the sweetness.
But actually now in nature, there aren’t flowers, but its graves.
I saw it was filled with graves, and tombstones for flowers. That is a particularly ominous image of tombstones replacing the flowers from my little drawing here.
But I’m just to give you a sense of really what we’re talking about is almost these men made a celebration.
You might even say death taking over the joy of life. And priests in their black gown the dark.
You know, this makes me think in Webster Monta Chelsea.
But the black gowns suggesting death along with the tombstones.
They’re walking their rounds they’re patrolling and then this miraculous line and buying And can I just also say that the accumulation of and.
This kind of weight that’s being added onto the speaker that breaking them.
Then this last line, and binding with briars, my Joy’s and designers, that internal run really helps emphasize the controlling nature.
The way these briars, which suggests also the crown of thorns of Jesus for me and always have.
I can’t quite dislodge that idea. That and it is one wherein the priests themselves in patrolling in looking.
they get to control they get to constrain press in and bind the speaker and their joy not only their joy, their happiness.
But also their want, wanting itself is seen as negative.
I think definitively the love here when we talk about the love being linked to desire.
This is a poem of could be argued about sexuality, about the rejection of controls and morality that’s brought in by the church and blink celebration of the body of freedom, of nature as of sex itself as a natural expression of love.
In this very company the poem, we see his anger and hatred of the way the church takes the forbids, has ruled is controlling, and with their man-made, blackness and celebration of death, eclipse the life of flowers of the garden and of desire itself.