So, besides bickering a little with the stone, I can never play with tiger’s eye without Blake running through my head.
by William BlakeTyger! Tyger! burning brightIn the forests of the night,What immortal hand or eyeCould frame thy fearful symmetry?
In what distant deeps or skiesBurnt the fire of thine eyes?On what wings dare he aspire?What the hand dare seize the fire?
And what shoulder, and what art,Could twist the sinews of thy heart?And when thy heart began to beat,What dread hand? and what dread feet?
What the hammer? what the chain?In what furnace was thy brain?What the anvil? what dread graspDare its deadly terrors clasp?
When the stars threw down their spears,And watered heaven with their tears,Did he smile his work to see?Did he who made the Lamb make thee?
Tyger! Tyger! burning brightIn the forests of the night,What immortal hand or eye,Dare frame thy fearful symmetry?
The Tyger is another piece I enjoy simply for the words themselves. Its symbolism doesn’t really do anything for me (for that I tend more towards John Keats) but I like the rhythm. You can almost feel the powerful beast padding through the forests of the night.
William Blake (1757- 1827) was another denizen of the Romantic era. He was a poet, painter and printer. I generally prefer his poetry to his other work. When I read the line “burnt the fire of thine eyes” it isn’t Blake’s own blocky and marginally striped tiger that comes to mind, but instead the work of another era. Henri Rousseau‘s 1891 painting Suprise! leaps up immediately to take it’s place.