William Blake's Jerusalem


This series of photographs, taken in the American Midwest, was completed in December 2017. The photos are paired with “Jerusalem,” William Blake's poem written in 1804:

And did those feet in ancient time,
Walk upon England's mountains green:
And was the holy Lamb of God,
On Englands pleasant pastures seen!

And did the Countenance Divine,
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here,
Among these dark Satanic Mills?

Bring me my Bow of burning gold;
Bring me my Arrows of desire:
Bring me my Spear: O clouds unfold!
Bring me my Chariot of fire!

I will not cease from Mental Fight,
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand:
Till we have built Jerusalem,
In Englands green & pleasant Land.



The image locations: 
cover:  Augustana College, Rock Island, IL.This is a sculpture,"Freedom," by Karoly Veress, 2000. It was inspired by Raoul Wallenberg, (b. 1912), who volunteered to serve as a Swedish special envoy in Nazi-occupied Budapest in 1944. He used his position to issue protective passports and to shelter Jews from deportation to Auschwitz. The gunmetal-colored sculpture’s blade-like edges remind us that millions were not sheltered under the wings of freedom. We are also reminded that Wallenberg -only 34 years old when taken by the Soviets- died a prisoner.

1-2        Davenport City Cemetery, Rockingham Road, Davenport, IA
3-4        Confederate Cemetery, Rock Island Arsenal, IL
5-6        Factory along Illinois Interstate 80
7-8        Detail of gate built in part from county jail door, Eric Mart, Davenport, IA
9            Robert Alexander Memorial, Florence Gray, c. 1945, Davenport Memorial Park
10          Exhaling Dissolution, Sarah Deppe, temporarily installed in Bettendorf, IA, 2012
11          Sculpture, Oakdale Memorial Gardens, Davenport, IA
12          Sculpture,
13-14    Sculpture, Des Moines, Iowa
15-16    Sculpture, Cincinnati, Ohio


William Blake's Jerusalem
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William Blake's Jerusalem

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