Rintrah ‘s Lament

This week we began to examine William Blake’s The Marriage of Heaven and Hell and we uncovered the many ways that Blake has  influenced the `Age of Aquarius’ in the second half of the Twentieth Century.  The Marriage of Heaven and Hell is a series of texts expressing Blake’s own deeply personal Romantic and revolutionary beliefs. During our tutorial we looked the poem The Argument which offered up many personal and varied interpretations.

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After giving the poem a lot of thought,  I began to see Rintrah (Blake’s alter ego?) as a character of disillusionment, foreshadowing what the world may become in the future. Blake emulates Biblical prophecies in this poem in order to comment on the progression of humanity and where we are headed.

Once meek and in a perilous path,
The just man kept his course along
The vale of death.
Roses are planted where thorns grow,
And on the barren heath
Sing the honey bees.
Then the perilous path was planted:
And a river and a spring
On every cliff and tomb;
And on the bleached bones
Red clay brought forth.

Blake wants to encourage a change in thinking. He believes concepts such as Good and Evil, Body and Soul, Energy and Reason and Heaven and Hell are not opposites, fighting each other. As an alternative, Blake is suggesting that these opposites need each other and that they are mutually dependent. If Rintrah’s roar is a warning of things to come, Blake would like to see these things become a marriage of counterparts: even that of Heaven and Hell.

Marvel comics have a character named Rintrah who is an Apprentice Magician and stands over 8 feet tall.

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