Poetry Inspired Iron Maiden frontman Bruce Dickinson spoke in front of hundreds who attended the unveiling of poet William Blake’s tombstone. The gravestone now finally, and honorably marks the exact place the great poet has laid rest for over 200 years.
William Blake died in obscurity in 1827 and thus was buried in an unmarked common grave in Bunhill Fields, London England. For many years, his final resting place was lost to the pages of history. Until now the only acknowledgment of the great painter and poet, was a tiny simple stone reading…
“He Lay Nearby”.
Two members of the Blake Society, Luis and Carol Garrido, uncovered the exact location of Blake’s remains in 2006.
Bruce Dickinson, whose band is one of the most enduring and successful heavy metal acts of all time, noted the poet as: “One of the greatest living English poets, artists.”
“I said ‘living,’ because if you’re into Blake, he never really dies. And I think he, in his way, should be as honored as Shakespeare for his contribution to the English spirit and I suppose a contrarian eccentric “Englishness”, which is still, thank God, alive and well. All the way from Monty Python to rock music and punk music. It spans generations.” – Bruce Dickinson
The inauguration took place at the cemetery on Sunday, followed by a sunset vigil during which 191 candles were placed at the gravesite. Dickinson was among the speakers addressing the crowd before the headstone was unveiled.
Footage Of His Speech
It Is No Secret That Bruce Dickinson & His Bandmates Have Found Lyrical Inspiration Through Some Of The Greatest Poetry Even Penned. For example: For his solo venture ‘The Chemical Wedding’ Bruce Dickinson initially set out to make an album about alchemy. But found that after the first few songs he had blown himself out. And then he turned to the poetry of William Blake. The album takes its title from ‘The Chymical Wedding’, a seventeenth century alchemical text, but it is Blake that lies at its core.
“I used the planned writing of this article as an excuse to go and read Blake’s works in their entirety.” – Bruce Dickinson