Ginsberg on Blake continues – 80

Los and Enitharmon – William Blake –  from The Book of Urizen

Allen at Naropa on William Blake’s The Four Zoas  continues from here

AG: Now, Enitharmon, what is her situation at this point?  Top of (page) three twenty six –  .”(For) Enitharmon shriekd amain crying O my sweet world/Built by the Architect divine whose love to Los & Enitharmon” – Oh, (this is) Enitharmon (talking), because she’s hung on Urizen still – “”Built by the Architect divine whose love to Los & Enitharmon/Thou rash abhorred Demon in they fury hast oerthrown” – (So she’s mad at Tharmas and wants to go back to Urizen, who was at least able to build an architectural solidity).

Then Tharmas argues back.  Then his revenge on Enitharmon, because he wants to be king there.  So on line four – “So Saying in a Wave he rap’d bright Enitharmon far/Apart from Los. but coverd her with softest brooding care/On a broad wave in the warm west. balming her bleeding wound” – (I was interpreting that as covered her with senses – the west being Tharmas.  Tharmas, right?  And so balming her in a wave of senses – making a mortal physical form for her, cutting her off from Los.  So Los and his Emanation are now separated.

And what does that feel like?

“… Los howld at the rending asunder all the fibres rent/Where Enitharmon joind to his left side..” – (Had before been joined like a Siamese twin or something) – “Where Enitharmon joind to his left side in griding pain” – (“Griding” is interesting.  I always liked that.  It took me years to realize it wasn’t “grinding” – it’s “griding” and it’s used also in “The Grey Monk”.  It’s an odd word and it’s very rarely used.  Very beautiful.  (“The Grey Monk” appears on the) bottom of (page) four-eighty) – [Allen sings] “My Brother starvd between two Walls/ His Childrens Cry my Soul appalls/I mockd at the wrack & griding chain/My bent body mocks their torturing pain” – (So he uses “griding” there, too)

That’s just a little detail.  Piercing, wounding – like griding chains- chains binding.  Griding handcuffs.  Charlie Ross [Editorial note – Charlie Ross was the teaching assistant for Allen this semester at Naropa] got beaten up by the cops in Denver a week ago and they put the handcuffs around him, griding his skin, so that when he was let loose there was a swelling and a cut -“griding”.

So Los is separated from Enitharmon – “He falling on the rocks bellowd his Dolor…” – (Dolor) – “till the blood/ Stanch’d..” –  Kind of (an) interesting line, just pure sound –  ” …then in ululation waild his woes upon the wind”.

Enter the Dark Spectre, called up by Tharmas, who had fallen with dislocated limbs on these shores.  Urthona – Earth-Owner  – the Spectre of Urthona enters, called Dark Spectre here. – ( “…The Spectre rose in pain/ A Shadow blue obscure & dismal…” – (Blue.  The Spectre of Imagination is blue.  Melancholy.  The Blues, in a way) – “… like a statue of lead/Bent by its fall from a high tower the dolorous shadow rose”

Then Ostriker points out that at this point we have Urthona  – the imagination, the integral imagination divided into three different parts – there’s the Spectre of Urthona, there’s Los in pain (in other words, lost imagination in pain, having to go to work to rebuild the universe) – and there (is) the Emanation of Los, Enitharmon – all of them separated out from each other.  So the imagination completely fallen apart.

Audio for the above can be heard here beginning at approximately fifty-eight-and-three-quarter minutes in and concluding at approximately sixty-two minutes in

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