Eternity (Poem by William Blake)

Possible Secular Interpretations of the Poem:
  • One cannot own joy, but can experience it & let it go.
  • If you try and hold on to it you will become captive.
  • If you let joy go ... you will have the freedom, like a bird, to fly with it.
  • There is also a danger of living in the past - "winged life destroy".
Possible Religious Interpretations of the Poem:
  • Joy may have referred to pleasure, or heavy religious observation.
  • The "winged life", in a religious sense, may be an angel ascending to heaven.
  • "Eternity's sun rise" may represent heaven.


He who binds to himself a joy
Does the winged life destroy;
But he who kisses the joy as it flies
Lives in eternity’s sun rise.

by William Blake (1757-1827)

Image (Public Domain):
William Blake watercolour illustrations for Robert Blair's poem The Grave.

Eternity - Joy - Pleasure - Poem - Poet - William Blake

Posted by ALCHEssMIST.
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