The Lamb

One of the easiest poems, The Lamb by William Blake appreciates the innocence and simplicity of lamb in the beginning and its Creator as the poem progresses. In the first stanza, the poet asks the lamb a number of rhetorical questions about the One who has given it such traits.

The second stanza can be considered to the answer of the first stanza. In the second stanza, the poet says that it is Jesus Christ who, in Christian Mythology, also known as Lamb because of his innocence. Hence we find the juxtaposition of Lamb and Jesus Christ.

The poem has been divided into two stanzas having 10 lines each. We also find repetition in the poem. The rhyme scheme of the poem is AABB.

The Lamb Poem Summary

Stanza 1

In the first stanza, the poet or the speaker rhetorically asks the “Little Lamb” if it knows who has created it. In the second line, the question is repeated in order to create a poetic effect. In the third line and onwards, he elaborates his question.

According to the poet/speaker, He is the one who gave it life and provided it with the food that it eats. His food (grass, leaves etc) grows along the streams (rivers) and also over the meadows. He gave it thick wool which covers its body preventing from excessive heat and cold.

The poet calls the wool clothing of delight which is the softest clothing, wooly and very bright. The poet here is praising the power of the Creator who can give such amazing clothes to lamb.

He is the one who gave it such a tender voice i.e. gentle/kind/affectionate voice. It is so gentle and charming that it makes the whole valley rejoice. In the ending of the first stanza, the poet again asks the lamb who is its Creator,

Stanza 2

As told earlier, in the second stanza, the poet now answers himself the questions that he raised in the previous stanza. The poet says that he will himself about the Creator to him (lamb). According to him, the Creator of Lamb is also known by the name of Lamb. It is because he too calls himself a Lamb.

The poet then gives the reasons why the Creator i.e. Jesus Christ is a Lamb – he is gentle, calm, sympathetic. The poet says that Christ became a little child. This line is again a reference to the Biblical assumption that Jesus is the son of God who is as innocent as lamb.

The speaker now reveals that he is a child saying that both the lamb and he himself are as innocent and meek as Christ. Thus they are also lambs (the three have innocence in common). In the final line, the speaker prays that God may bless it.

This poem is quite opposite to The Tyger in which the poet appreciates fierceness of the tiger.