Guess the Poem. Answer.

For anybody who didn’t get it, this is the poem (song) which I paraphrased yesterday. I’ve gone for a bit of an overkill, and given you three different recordings. The first one is by John Otway, who I adore, the second is from the Proms, and the third is the salvation army, but the vocalist, again, is John Otway. I’ve included it because of the lovely images.

JerusalemThe Feet Song
By William Blake

And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon Englands mountains green:
Back in the old days, was He really in England?
And was the holy Lamb of God,
On Englands pleasant pastures seen!
Back in the old days, was He really in England?

And did the Countenance Divine,
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
Did He improve our weather conditions?
And was Jerusalem builded here,
Among these dark Satanic Mills?
Is it true about what was built in those hellholes?

Bring me my Bow of burning gold:
Bring me my arrows of desire:
I need my shiny weapons and my sharp lust.
Bring me my Spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire!
Don’t forget the spear and the burning wheels.

I will not cease from Mental Fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand:
I’ll fight 24/7 to stay sane
Till we have built Jerusalem,
In England’s green & pleasant Land.
Until the building works’s completed here.

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6 thoughts on “Guess the Poem. Answer.

  1. Ooo! Good job! I’m not familiar with a lot of older poetry and hymns. Would never have guessed that. never even heard of it actually. But you had a couple who got it. That was really interesting!

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      1. Ah! The adorable clown John Otway singing to the Salvation Army’s backing music, with his lead-guitarist of the time adding his voice part-way through.
        John Otway is a successful failure with a large cult following. His music is usually funny, so this is unusual for him.

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    1. The people who got it were English. It’s not possible to live in England and not know that song. I didn’t realise it was so parochial, but ofcourse it would be. I find the words strange, because on the one hand Blake is suggesting that Jerusalem has already been built here, and on the other he’s saying that he’s telling us that he’s not going to rest until it has been built here. It struck me as odd when I first heard it as a child.

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