Blake, the visionary poet, hymn writer and artist, was born 250 years ago today. On 28th November 1757 he "leapt" into this "dangerous world" at 28, Broad Street, London, "helpless, naked, piping loud / like a fiend hid in a cloud" to "sulk upon" his "mother's breast".
Blake was the first poet to speak up for the rights of small children. And, although not a churchgoer himself, he believed mankind to be a divine creation. In his hymn "The Divine Image" he wrote:
And all must love the human form,
In heathen, Turk or Jew;
Where Mercy, Love & Pity dwell
There God is dwelling too.
(you won't find this last verse in a certain church hymnary!)
'I shall toast a glass and light a candle,' says P-i-R.