. . .[the flower] chose her colors with the greatest of care. She dressed herself slowly. She adjusted her petals one by one. She did not wish to go out into the world all rumpled, like the field poppies.” – The Little Prince
The Little Prince is a small book with a very large message. On the surface, the prince is telling how he had fled his home asteroid because of a red rose whom he had loved very greatly but had abandoned because she had become very demanding. Upon closer study, however, it becomes apparent that the prince [and de Saint Exupery] are speaking about the loss of their own muses–their inner selves–their essences. In this way, the message of The Little Prince is much the same as that of William Blake, when he cautioned humanity against the loss of their imaginations. The result of having done so is a state that Blake called Experience, which is the state of the hardened, insensitive adult. After the little prince leaves his sweet red rose, he finds himself stranded in a distant desert. The Little Prince was written at about the same time as The Waste Land; and it seems that the little prince’s desert is much the same as Eliot’s Waste Land. In describing humanity’s fall into the dry and parched Waste Land state, Antoine de Saint Exupery and T.S. Eliot are messengers who carried the voice of William Blake into the twentieth century.