第8页 Songs of Innocence
- 章节名：Songs of Innocence
- 页码：第8页 2015-02-02 08:21:08
这篇文章是一个精读此诗的练习。写完之后，感觉自己好像触摸到了生命的规律： The Ecchoing Green: End in the Beginning In the first stanza, Blake employs personification to turn non-human subjects into personified constructs. He uses the adjective “happy” to describe the skies and “merry” to describe the bells, which allows these subjects to feel, to have human emotion. Personification also gives these non-human subjects a sense of agency. For example, in “the merry bells ring to welcome the Spring,” the verb “welcome” describes the human act of greeting, which requires initiating action. Thus, the bell is depicted as a being that is able to rang itself with a purpose. However, in reality, a bell is not able to ring itself with a purpose. The absence of an initiator to ring the bell implies Blake’s use of apostrophe. An absent personage penetrates throughout this stanza. Blake capitalizes “Sun” in the first line to distinguish it from the astronomical sun. In this perspective, the “Sun” can be read as a metaphor to an absent person – a big Other, or God – that watches over and shines upon everything under it. Moreover, the spatial order of this stanza illustrates the presence of a possible mythological personage. The poem starts off from a very high place (the sun and the skies), then moves to birds that fly in the sky, and lastly lands on ground level (sports on the Green). This high-to-low order draws a parallel to a transcendental gaze from a high up, god-like figure to its sons and creatures below. In addition, the apostrophe employed in this stanza can also be read as an abstract quality. This quality could be a universal law that gives the non-human subjects a sense of agency: the sun rises on its own, the spring comes on its own, even the bell rings on its own. Everything finds its own place, time and purpose under the governance of this universal law. In the second stanza, Blake employs two layers of comparison. The first layer is a comparison between the children playing sports and the old folks sitting under the oak, which paints a picture where the young coexists with the old. The second layer is a comparison between the old folks and their own youth, which is externalized through their speech represented by the word “were.” Both layers of comparisons reveal a contrast in regards to time: old and young, experience and innocence. Time, in this stanza, is the abstract quality – the universal law – that governs their lives. Moreover, watching children playing sports triggers the old folks’ memory of youth and reminds them of innocence and joy. Old John “does laugh away care” is an action that calls for a temporary pause from his old life to revisit his memory, and also implies that time, at that moment, cease to exist because of joy (although, in reality, time does not cease to exist). Rather than completely happy and cheerful as in the first stanza, the tone of this stanza is mixed, particularly because of the use of past tense. Past tense suggests a sense of irreversible loss for the old folks as well as their helplessness and inability to become children again and to return to innocence. The mixed use of present tense and past tense also echoes with the coexistence between old and young, representing the different kinds of change brought by time. The third stanza makes another turn. The “weary” little kids, the descending sun and the finished sports symbolize passing time, which brings an end to the joyful activities on the Green. They can also be read as metaphors to childhood – or life – that ends at a certain point in time. Blake uses simile to compare the “many brothers and sisters” with “birds in their nest” that “are ready for rest.” Despite that both subjects are vivacious and small, they also follow the law of time and rest in their nests when the day ends. The structure of the poem is similar to a circle. It starts at one point (i.e. “The Sun does arise”), moves around, returns to the starting point and ends in the same place (i.e. “The sun does descend”). This structure is clearly illustrated in the word “ecchoing.” An echo is essentially a repetition of the original sound after it travels some distance and returns back, like a repetition of the starting point in the circle of life when it ends. The echo is born from the original sound/point, but they are not exactly the same. During the process of creating an echo, the original sound experiences time and space, comes back as something similar in essence but different in form. The binary between original sound and echo draws a parallel to innocence and experience, in which the latter changes the quality of the former, despite that both are rooted from the very same being. In the poem, the color green is constant, but with experience, it darkens. It’s interesting to see that in the painting of this poem, a circle is drawn on the lower right. Maybe it symbolizes the circle of life, or an echo, or the sacred “o” in the word echo that represents Omega – the last, the end, the ultimate return.
原文： The Ecchoing Green BY WILLIAM BLAKE ——————————— The sun does arise, And make happy the skies. The merry bells ring To welcome the Spring. The sky-lark and thrush, The birds of the bush, Sing louder around, To the bells’ cheerful sound. While our sports shall be seen On the Ecchoing Green. ———————————— Old John, with white hair Does laugh away care, Sitting under the oak, Among the old folk, They laugh at our play, And soon they all say. ‘Such, such were the joys. When we all girls & boys, In our youth-time were seen, On the Ecchoing Green.’ ———————————— Till the little ones weary No more can be merry The sun does descend, And our sports have an end: Round the laps of their mothers, Many sisters and brothers, Like birds in their nest, Are ready for rest; And sport no more seen, On the darkening Green.
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