Saturday, 18 May 2013

I came across the following poem by William Blake the other day which seems to reflect a negative view of the coldness of the Church and the lack of a spirit of joy and celebration. Okay I will not go as far as to say we should introduce beer into the church, but the other points are noted especially the contrast between the warmth of the ale-house and the cold of the church, whether that be physical coldness or a lack of welcome.

Dear Mother, dear Mother, the Church is cold,
But the Ale-house is healthy & pleasant & warm;
Besides I can tell where I am used well,
Such usage in Heaven will never do well.
But if at the Church they would give us some Ale,
And a pleasant fire our souls to regale,

We'd sing and we'd pray all the live-long day,
Nor ever once wish from the Church to stray.
Then the Parson might preach, & drink, & sing,
And we'd be as happy as birds in the spring;
And modest Dame Lurch, who is always at Church,
Would not have bandy children, nor fasting, nor birch.
And God, like a father rejoicing to see
His children as pleasant and happy as he,
Would have no more quarrel with the Devil or the Barrel,
But kiss him, & give him both drink and apparel.

The Little Vagabond - William Blake, Songs of Experience

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