Write about the use Blake makes of children’s voices in at least two other poems. I am using the innocent poems “The Lamb” and “Infant Joy” in order to compare the way Blake uses children’s voices with the experienced poem “Infant Sorrow” “The Lamb” is written like a religious hymn and is narrated by a small child. The “Little Lamb” in the poem symbolizes Jesus. The structure of “The Lamb” is two simple stanzas each of ten lines. The first half of the poem represents the child talking to “The Lamb” the second half shows the “Lamb” replying to the small child.
The first half of the poem also acts as a chorus, like in a religious hymn, the simple structure reflects the simplicity of the poem and the child.
“Infant Joy” shows the joys of a child being born and the choice of names. The poem is narrated by a two-day-old baby throughout. The poem shows the celebration of childbirth and a child.
The structure of “Infant Joy” is two simple stanzas, each of six lines, the structure if simple like the baby, this symbolizes innocence. “Infant Sorrow” is the partner poem of “Infant Joy” ad is the complete opposite of it. It shows the pain and upset caused by childbirth and shows the loneliness of the newborn baby. The structure of “Infant Sorrow” is two stanzas, each of four lines, which appears quite simple and innocent like however, the lines are much longer than in “Infant Joy”.
The poem is narrated by a newborn baby.
The three poems I have chosen have a lot of similarities, they are all narrated by children or babies but Blake changes his style of writing in each case. In “Infant Joy” the baby is “but two days old”, the baby appears happy and content as it is an innocent poem, throughout the poem the baby talks of its joy of being born. In “The Lamb” the small child is talking to Jesus, represented by “The Lamb”. The child asks questions of creation and then replies to itself.
“The Lamb” is different to “Infant Joy” as the child is playing both parts, the lamb and the child therefore asking and answering its own questions whereas in “Infant Joy” there is only one character, the baby, and therefore we only feel its emotions, the mother and father are not involved in the poem. Whereas in “Infant Sorrow” the mother and father play the main part, the baby talks of the upset and moaning of his mother and father shortly and it is born and shows how it is feeling lonely and controlled. Blake here is obviously creating a different child for each poem, and each child obviously has its own voice and opinions. Possibly, the babies in “Infant Joy” and “Infant Sorrow” are the same baby but Blake has given them different situations to live and cope in.
Blake uses different language also in each of the poems, in “The Lamb” Blake uses archaic language to symbolize the relationship between the child, God, and Jesus, “Dost thou know who made thee,” whereas in “Infant Joy” Blake uses innocent, positive words to symbolize that the baby is happy with its birth and excited at the fact that it will soon be named. “Infant Sorrow” is in complete contrast with the two other poems; Blake uses negative, experienced words of corruption and hatred to portray the emotions that the baby is feeling.