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William Blake (1757–1827). The Poetical Works. 1908.

On Art and Artists

To Venetian Artists

THAT God is colouring Newton does show,

And the Devil is a black outline, all of us know.

Perhaps this little fable may make us merry:

A dog went over the water without a wherry;

A bone which he had stolen he had in his mouth;

He cared not whether the wind was north or south.

As he swam he saw the reflection of the bone.

‘This is quite perfection—one generalizing tone!

Outline! There’s no outline, there’s no such thing:

All is chiaroscuro, poco-pen—it’s all colouring!’

Snap, snap! He has lost shadow and substance too.

He had them both before. ‘Now how do ye do?’

‘A great deal better than I was before:

Those who taste colouring love it more and more.’