"I see Blake as a perpetual protester - protesting against poverty, against rationalism, against industrialisation that destroys creativity, against the exploitation of women and children and animals, against the establishment and, particularly, the established church.
So I wanted to do a protest piece and there is SO MUCH to protest about in our contemporary society. Yet there is also so much that is clean and beautiful and peaceful and that is what I see from my window, whereas the bad things are not visible unless you go and seek them out or read (or view) about them in the papers and on the tele. So I wanted to say - 'yes there are horrible things going on out there but we have a human obligation to know, especially when they are done by our government or police or army in our name, and to make our protest loud and clear.' Blake would he been delighted to have been able to sign up to petitions on 38 degrees!
It was quite fortuitous that someone pointed out that the logo of St Edmund contained a pair of arrows, so I was pleased to link my piece with the church and to see the link between that old evil act - a violent martyrdom - with the contemporary violence which is so pervasive in the Middle East. The martyr’s crown is more problematic - I hate the idea of anyone losing their life because of what they believe, because there is such widespread evidence that most of the things that most of us believe are plain wrong and, often, extremely stupid. Socrates said 'The only thing we know is that we know nothing' and this is as true of religious belief - and I mean ANY religion - as it is true of Newton’s laws of motion. Blake hated Newton’s idea of a predictable, calculable universe and wouldn’t he have been delighted when Einstein showed that Newton’s laws only appeared to be right because our senses are insufficiently developed to perceive where they go wrong?..."