Songs of Innocence and of Experience

william blake

Comment on diction and tone of holy thursday(songs of experience)..

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"Holy Thursday" consists of four quatrains. The first is a heroic quatrain (ABAB) but the remaining three vary. The second stanza strikes discord by having no rhyme (ABCD, although there may be an intended slant rhyme for "joy" and "poverty" in their spelling). The last two follow the ABCB pattern. This irregularity contributes to the poem's tone of decay and confusion as the subject matter, the exploitation and neglect of children, becomes clear to the reader.

The tone of the poem is melancholy and fatalistic. The "eternal winter" in which the children live suggests that poverty is a state of death in nature, and that the true order of things is not to have children languishing in squalor and hunger. The children lack the sun and life-giving rain of summer and spring, and are thus doomed to this unnatural state by the machinations of a system that remembers them only to justify its own righteousness.