Ginsberg on Blake continues – 24

Urizen with his net – William Blake – from The Book of Urizen (c.1818)

Allen Ginsberg’s class on William Blake’s  The Four Zoas continues from here

AG: What follows now is Urizen usurping the realm of imagination, proposed in the text partly in terms of the directions in space that they all own.

“Thou Luvah said the Prince of Light…”

Now, Urizen has just had this argument with Los.  Now what’s going to come is the battle between Luvah and Urizen next.  In other words, schematically, this next three-quarters of a page will (be) the battle of Luvah and Urizen and then, beyond that, Urthona and Urizen, from the middle of page twenty-two on.  Just to get it started.

“Thou Luvah said the Prince of Light behold our sons &  daughters/Reposd on beds. let them sleep on. do thou alone depart/Into thy wished Kingdom where in Majesty & Power/We may erect a throne. deep in the North I place my lot…”

The North is Urthona’s realm.  So Urizen is going to take over imagination.

“Thou in the South listen attentive..”

So he’s inviting Luvah to come to his own territory- South – which is Urizen’s territory-  so he’s inviting emotion to come into the territory of reason, and reason is going into the territory of imagination.  So this is how Urizen, as King of the Universe, is going to rearrange territory.

“… In silent of this night/I will infold the Eternal tent in clouds opake while thou/Siezing the chariots of the morning. Go outfleeting ride/Afar into the Zenith high bending thy furious course”

So he’s saying, Bring your power to my south.  Emotion, you bring your power to my South, all the way to the Zenith, which, according to Damon in the dictionary, would represent the brain — the highest point of the reason.

“… Go outfleeting ride/Afar into the Zenith high bending thy furious course./Southward with half the tents of men inclosd in clouds/Of Tharmas & Urthona. I….

It’s sort of like a Shakespeare monologue.  Like the king in Shakespeare arranging the order of battle.  “Henry VIII”? -(sic)  or which Shakespeare would that (be that) would have that?  – “Henry IV”.

“… I remaining in porches of the brain/Will lay my scepter on Jerusalem the Emanation/On all her sons & on thy sons O Luvah & on mine/Till dawn was wont to wake them then my trumpet sounding loud/Ravishd away in night my strong command shall be obeyd..”

Dawn would be east, Luvah.  Dawn “was wont to wake them” – emotion was wont to wake all those sons.

“… my trumpet sounding loud/Ravishd away in night my strong command shall be obeyd/For I have placd my centinels in stations each tenth man/Is bought & sold & in dim night my Word shall be their law..

So that’s Urizen’s plan (or) battle strategy.    Luvah, however, replies (and) doesn’t accept it – “Luvah replied Dictate to thy Equals, am not I/The Prince of all the hosts of Men nor Equal know in Heaven/If I arise into the Zenith leaving thee to watch/The Emanation & her Sons the Satan & the Anak/Sihon and Og. wilt thou not rebel to my laws remain/In darkness building thy strong throne & in my ancient night/Daring my power wilt arm my sons against me in the Atlantic.”

The sons, Satan, Anak, Sihon and Og, are interpreted as giants whose function is to oppose man’s progress toward eternity. That’s Ostriker

So there’s a conflict between Urizen and Luvah.  Luvah demanding supremacy and here

“… raging Luvah pourd/The Lances

to be continued 

Audio for the above can be heard  here, beginning at approximately seventy-two minutes in and concluding at approximately seventy-six-and-a-half minutes in  

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