A Short Analysis of William Blake’s ‘The Clod and the Pebble’

A close reading of Blake’s classic poem

‘The Clod and the Pebble’ is a William Blake poem that first appeared in his 1794 volume Songs of Experience, the companion-piece to his 1789 collection Songs of Innocence. The poem stages a conversation between a clod of clay and a pebble to make a point about the nature of love. Before we proceed to an analysis of ‘The Clod and the Pebble’, here’s a reminder of the poem.

The Clod and the Pebble

‘Love seeketh not itself to please,
Nor for itself hath any care,
But for another gives its ease,
And builds a Heaven in Hell’s despair.’

So sung a little Clod of Clay
Trodden with the cattle’s feet,
But a Pebble of the brook
Warbled out these metres meet:

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