William Blake

(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827 / London)

A Poison Tree - Poem by William Blake

I was angry with my friend:
I told my wrath, my wrath did end.
I was angry with my foe:
I told it not, my wrath did grow.

And I watered it in fears,
Night and morning with my tears;
And I sunned it with smiles,
And with soft deceitful wiles.

And it grew both day and night,
Till it bore an apple bright.
And my foe beheld it shine.
And he knew that it was mine,

And into my garden stole
When the night had veiled the pole;
In the morning glad I see
My foe outstretched beneath the tree.

Topic(s) of this poem: tree


Comments about A Poison Tree by William Blake

  • Oratile Diratsagae (4/14/2017 11:55:00 PM)


    this is so good. peace (Report) Reply

    3 person liked.
    2 person did not like.
  • Brian Mawadri (4/14/2017 12:54:00 PM)


    beautiful poem......... (Report) Reply

  • Er Dheeraj (4/8/2017 11:10:00 PM)


    Yess I have lived this philosophy in my real life.I was really angry with one of my friend.As I didn't tell my frustration to anyone, I found it's increasing everyday at every second in my life.My confusion frustrated me and my frustration depressed me. As I went ahead with all those depressions and loneliness l experienced the first phase of my madness.Yess I was mad in relation to all those persons whom I have left in my backstory because they all were growing with time but I was not.And Yess I had that poisonous tree within me.Atlast I discussed these stuff to one of psychiatrist friend of mine and he told me that you are left with that issue and there is a poisonous tree within me.And after all the realisations I came back to me out of that poisonous tree. (Report) Reply

  • (4/8/2017 10:54:00 AM)


    Just like the forbidden fruit of knowledge, one should not permit the tree of poison to grow inside the mind. Wipe out the entire negative feelings and refresh frequently to attain peaceful life. (Report) Reply

  • Brock Snodgrass (2/8/2017 10:46:00 PM)


    I'm not sure about the meaning of this poem. The obvious meaning is he is happy about his foe's death or that with his foe's demise, his wrath is gone. For some reason I feel like it also means that he realized the toll that hold a grudge can take, the effort that is put into it, and that by talking it out in the first place, makes a foe into a friend. (Report) Reply

  • Sylva-onyema Uba (1/26/2017 11:37:00 AM)


    A well articulated poem blended in a quatrain of four stanzas.

    Sylva-Onyema Uba.
    (Report) Reply

  • Tom Allport (12/31/2016 12:27:00 PM)

    tom allport
    a man with a plan? put into verse (Report) Reply

  • Indira Renganathan (11/23/2016 5:41:00 AM)


    Wonderful poem in simple words....last line, superb....my salutations sir (Report) Reply

  • Kumarmani Mahakul (11/21/2016 12:20:00 AM)


    Wrath or peace may be increased as per the behavior of a person. Poet here so nicely presented about it. Beautiful poem. (Report) Reply

  • (10/12/2016 7:19:00 AM)


    I feel the poet ideology: we decide who to forgive, I was angry with my friend: I told my wrath, my wrath did end. and who not to forgive, I was angry with my foe: I told it not, my wrath did grow., is in fact very true (Report) Reply

  • (9/18/2016 10:02:00 AM)


    Great work!!! (Report) Reply

  • Bharati Nayak (9/6/2016 1:33:00 PM)


    The poet learned to overcome his anger and ultimately won over his so called foe.Our anger can create many enemies.If we learn to control our anger we can win many friends. (Report) Reply

    R Soos R Soos (11/17/2016 12:44:00 PM)

    Bharati - I know we all read ourselves into poems, so perhaps I am simply reading myself into this one; but it seems to me his 'foe' was killed, and he's happy about it =: -)

  • Sriranji Aratisankar (9/6/2016 8:37:00 AM)


    Blake is my favourite poet. I like his writings..' A Poison Tree' is one of his best poems...Idealism of life has been described in a poetic manner... Though the poem has been composed nearly 200 years ago but its application is still relevant... (Report) Reply

  • Mizzy ........ (9/3/2016 11:54:00 AM)


    Lovely poetry with great life lesson.... (Report) Reply

  • (8/9/2016 11:48:00 AM)


    To be without a friend is to poor indeed (Report) Reply

  • Vivek Kumar (4/25/2016 10:16:00 PM)


    ver y very very lovely n impressive poem... (Report) Reply

  • Ramesh Rai (4/25/2016 3:54:00 AM)


    Sir, only I can bow my head.A poet never dies and you must be peeping from the window of heaven. Thanks and Regards Sir. (Report) Reply

  • Manache Poetry (4/18/2016 2:19:00 AM)


    Great sayings and a powerful poem :) (Report) Reply

  • Chris Yang (4/7/2016 9:00:00 PM)


    I would like to know the conflict between the narrator and the foe. That would be interesting. (Report) Reply

  • Owen Yang (3/29/2016 2:34:00 PM)


    A moving poem. My favorite part is that the foe turns into something more like a friend. (Report) Reply

    Owen Yang Owen Yang (4/7/2016 7:22:00 PM)

    Sorry for the last sentence, I misunderstood the poem. The narrator has done some rather evil scheming!

Read all 159 comments »

# 23 poem on top 500 Poems

User Rating:
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Read poems about / on: tree, friend, night, smile, water, fear



Poem Submitted: Wednesday, May 9, 2001

Poem Edited: Tuesday, December 23, 2014


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