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The narrator of “The Chimney Sweeper” in lives a terrible life that could result in his death at any time. His father sold him as a chimney sweeper, making him little more than a slave.Yet this boy still manages the type of optimism only a child can muster and comforts his friend Tom Dacre when his head is shaved.Despite their young age, these children have volumes of experience.
That night, Tom dreams of his friends’ death, but it is surprisingly not a nightmare.
In his dream, many of the sweepers are “lock’d up in coffins of black” (12).
Even though they both are living terrible existences, there is still hope in death. They want an Angel to come save them and bring them to green pastures where everything will be perfect. However, these are two children who are looking forward to their deaths.
Accepting one’s fate and greeting it happily is an astonishingly mature mindset that few adults possess.
The first line describes a “black thing in snow” (1).
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The experience and misery of the child is a stark contrast with the purity and whiteness of the snow.
While comforting Tom, the narrator says now “the soot cannot spoil your white hair” (8).
The narrator is saying that the horridness of their situation cannot taint Tom’s purity and innocence as a child.
Blake shows a progression from ignorance to understanding, or rather innocence to experience., the narrator spends a lot of his time discussing the situation of his friend Tom Dacre.
When he is first mentioned, the narrator is comforting Tom because his head is shaved.