THE POEMS OF WILLIAM BLAKE.
"I assert for myself that I do not behold the outward creation, and that to me it is hindrance, and not action.… I question not my corporeal eye any more than I would question a window concerning a sight. I look through it, and not with it."
"The angel who presided at my birth
Said: Little creature, formed of joy and mirth,
Go, love without the help of anything on earth."
BEFORE the publication of these volumes I knew but one of Blake's poems, that on the Human Form, or Divine Image, quoted by James John Garth Wilkinson in his great work. The wisdom and the celestial simplicity of this little piece prepared one to
- Life of William Blake, "Pictor Ignotus," with selections from his poems and other writings. By the late Alexander Gilchrist, author of the "Life of William Etty." Illustrated from Blake's own works, in fac-simile, by W. J. Linton, and in photolithography, with a few of Blake's original plates. In 2 vols. London: Macmillan and Co., 1863.
I give the full title, in recommending the work to all good readers. The first volume contains the Life and a noble supplementary chapter by Mr. D. G. Rossetti; the second volume contains the Selections, admirably edited by Mr. D. G. Rossetti, with the assistance of Mr. W. M. Rossetti. There is magnificent prose as well as poetry in the selections, and the engravings in themselves are worth more than most books.