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    I was wondering - which poems are you choosing to learn? Obviously, Holy Thursday, Diving Image, Lost/Found poems , Tiger/Lamb, Chimneys. But what are the most useful ones to learn other than the main ones?

    And also, how many should we learn? I know I can't learn them all, but is there really an optimum amount?

    In exchange for your thoughts, I give you a bullet-pointed analysis (various sources and much of my own thoughts) of Little Girl Lost and Found in innocence. Not sure if anyone has posted one before, but I found some good scholarly ideas which I used.

    The Little Girl Lost:


    · Lyca. Is she just a girl, or is she an archetypal figure who represents a universal aspect of humanity? She “shall arise and seek / for her maker meek” – tries to find out about the world?
    · Typically, we can read it as a loss of innocence, going out into the world: “Lost in desert wild / is your little child”.
    · The descent of the child into experience. However, she is not afraid: “Sweet sleep come to me / Underneath this tree” We can interpret her parents’ anguish as proper, or we can see it as the one thing that holds Lyca back from sleep – “How can Lyca sleep, / If her mother weep?” Interesting, as we normally read Blake as innocence=good, experience=bad, but here there is no danger for Lyca in experience.
    · Possibly because she is experiencing nature and trusts it – “Leopards, tigers play, round her as she lay” Blake believed that we have nothing to fear from nature if we love and trust it, and represents this here.
    · The lion – represents some sort of divinity. Echoes of religious icons (e.g. Mary) “From his eyes of flame / Ruby tears there came;”
    · It is as though she is re-entering Eden – “And the desert wild / became a garden mild”. She is returning to the pre-lapsarian state.
    · “And naked they conveyed / To caves the sleeping maid” – she is naked which implies sexuality, but perhaps also purity and honesty. It may also imply the soul, naked without its mortal body, entering the realms of the dead. However, does this mean that the animals killed Lyca? The lions, leopards and tigers do introduce a biblical element.

    The Little Girl Found:

    · The parents have a very different journey from Lyca: “Arm in arm seven days / They traced the desert ways” For Lyca, the desert became a mild garden as if by magic, for the parents it is not so. Perhaps indicates more spirituality of the garden itself.
    · It is the lion that ends their journey and their suffering: “A couching lion lay”
    · The lion stalks them as prey but then: “but their fears allay / when he licks their hands” It is possible that Blake uses the lion to represent experience, Lyca’s parents interpretation of her sexual adventures. Although the adults are at first terrified of their child’s journey into experience, later they see that nothing terrible has happened. They have reached a new peace with it which we could, at a slight stretch, regard as a return to innocence.
    · The lion is also extremely spiritual – “And wondering behold, / A spirit armed in gold” – this is when the scales fall from their eyes. Might also be commenting on the fact that there is a sort of spirituality in nature that was hidden in Blake’s contemporary existence. So perhaps the adults have reached a spiritual truth.
    · ‘Lyca’ is a version of the Greek ‘Laikas’ or harlot, and indeed Lyca is very passive –she sleeps throughout her treatment from the animals, possibly indicating acceptance. “And saw their sleeping child / among tigers wild” Here, Blake may be commenting on his society’s view of sexuality, especially among young women. Lyca goes beyond society’s ideas of good and evil, possibly becoming more innocent because of it. Therefore, if ‘harlot’ applies then it is applied with irony.
    · The ending: “To this day they dwell / in a lonely dell / nor fear the wolvish howl / nor the lion’s growl” – The word “lonely” could be ominous, indicating that all is not well. However, it could mean that ‘enlightenment’ is a very lonely place to be because all others are not there. They have reverted from post-lapsarian sexual guilt, to pre-lapsarian sexual innocence, and thus have nothing to fear.

    NB: 7 is a biblical number and in older literature, 7 also represents virginity. Lyca is "seven summers old" and her parents travel for 7 days.
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    Cheers for the analysis, tis a great help seen as we haven't studied those yet.

    Apparently common themes for Blake and the main poems to look at re this are (main ones in bold);
    God and the Church (his attitudes to) - The Shepherd, The Lamb, The Divine Image, Holy Thursday (exp) Chimney Sweeper (exp), The Garden of Love, The Little Vagabond, London, Human Abstract


    Love - The Blossom, The Clod and the Pebble, The Sick Rose, The Angel, My Pretty Rose Tree, Ah! Sunflower, The Lily, The Garden of Love, A Poison Tree


    Children - The Echoing Green, The Lamb, The Little Black Boy, The Chimney Sweeper (both), Laughing Song, A Cradle Song, Holy Thursday (both), Nurse's Song (both), Infant Joy, Infant Sorrow, The Schoolboy and the Lost/ Found poems


    Obviously have a read through all the poems and get the basis jist of them but there's no need to know them all in depth.

    The one's you mentioned are the key ones, but i'd also add a couple to that list; Nurse's song (both) are useful as contradictory ideas on how to treat children as is The School Boy. London is a must and the Poison Tree is also useful, and finally The Clod and the Pebble (but maybe cos thats one of my fave poems of all time!)

    One's not so important are the 'flower ones', ie The Blossom, The Lily, Ah! Sunflower, others like Laughing Song and Cradle Song are not filled with useful ideas and id also add the Infant Joy/ Sorrow ones.

    That's my humble opinion anyway!

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    Sorry forgot one!
    The Garden of Love is important too!
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    Are you guys on AQA B? Because if you are a few of those poems aren't even on the syllabus!! (I know you're probably not on AQA B, otherwise you wouldn't be mentioning the poems lol, just thought I'd point it out!)
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    (Original post by ~Bex~)
    Are you guys on AQA B? Because if you are a few of those poems aren't even on the syllabus!! (I know you're probably not on AQA B, otherwise you wouldn't be mentioning the poems lol, just thought I'd point it out!)
    Dear God I wish I knew. The teacher has been teaching us the whole thing though.

    Funky_moped: thankyou, very helpful! This is my list to learn:

    The Schoolboy
    Holy Thursday (inn)
    Holy Thursday (exp)
    The Lamb
    The Tiger
    The Divine Image
    Human Abstract
    Chimney Sweeper (inn)
    Chimney Sweeoper (exp)
    All lost/found poems
    Garden of Love
    Nurse's Song (inn)
    Nurse's Song (exp)
    Poison Tree
    London
    The Sick Rose (just because its short, argh)

    I figure that that should cover everything... we've also done nature as a common theme, but you can find that in London, the schoolboy etc.
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    (Original post by ~Bex~)
    Are you guys on AQA B? Because if you are a few of those poems aren't even on the syllabus!! (I know you're probably not on AQA B, otherwise you wouldn't be mentioning the poems lol, just thought I'd point it out!)
    No im doing A2 AQA A!

    Thanks for your concern though!

    x
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    I think we've done everything but the Fly, because my teacher hates it lol. Doesn't seem particularly significant anyway.
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    The Fly's a pretty good poem actually! Just really about human's insignificance on earth and how easily it can be over. Doesn't really fit into any of the main themes so I doubt it will be useful in the exam
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    Yeah I read it and I found it really funny and then I ended up doing a little doodle of a fly... anyway... I'm sure if its about anything thats on the exam I can replace it with another one.

    But it does rock. You're not wrong there!
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    Just out of curiosity, when you say 'learn' do you mean off by heart? I was just gonna learn some quotes from a wider range of poems!

    Though I'm going to focus on studing:
    London
    Holy Thursday
    The Chimney Sweeper (both)
    The Nurses Song (both)
    The Schoolboy
    The Lamb
    The Garden of Love

    But generally, I'm going to learn by theme rather than by poem I think! Spider diagram time!!
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    I love spider diagrams.
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    Man I love the fly whats everyone got against it Funky Moped's right too, it just makes you realise how insignificant humanity is. But back to the point...i tend to learn poems by key quotes and themes rather than trying to learn the whole thing! For instance these are the ones I have managed to remember today:
    Holy Thursday: "multitudes of lambs. Thousands of innocent boys and girls raising their innocent hands." "Grey headed Beadles" "wands as white as snow" "like Thames waters flow"
    Chimney Sweeper Innocence: "He'd have god for his father and never want joy" "So if all do their duty they need not fear harm" "spoil your white hair"
    Little Black Boy: "I am black as if bereav'd of light" "And we are put on earth a little space" "be like him and then he will love me"
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    Wiki Support Team
    Did the exam in January and I focused on:

    London
    The Garden of Love
    The Ecchoing Green
    Chimney Sweeper (Experience)

    The only poems you need to know to be able to answer virtually every question

    Oh and Divine Image is quite a good one to learn a few lines from. We got a question on religious attitudes/views in January and it was pretty easy. Good luck to you all!!
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    Both Introductions will deff. be on my list of poems to include in ALL essays. They, (and Earths Answer in Experience) have got major quotability and huge reference to all of Blake's ideals. I'm suprised no one has mentioned them!
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    We didn't even look at those.
 
 
 
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