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English rhyme = A, ?, AB, CD, CD, 27, 87, 9 g,
D All is, if I have grace to use it so,
As ever in my great Task-Master's eye.
The labor of an age in pilèd stones?
Or that his hallowed relics should be hid
Thou in our wonder and astonishment
Thy easy numbers flow, and that each heart
What needs my Shakespeare for his No less renowned than War: new foes honored bones
Threatening to bind our souls with secular chains.
Help us to save free conscience from the
Cromwell, our chief of men, who through a
Not of war only, but detractions rude,
And Worcester's laureate wreath: yet much remains
To conquer still; Peace hath her vic
Of hireling wolves, whose gospel is their
ON HIS BLINDNESS
When I consider how my light is spent Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
Either man's work or his own gifts.
Is kingly: thousands at his bidding speed,
ON THE PROPOSALS OF CERTAIN MINISTERS
AT THE COMMITTEE FOR PROPAGATION They also serve who only stand and wait."
OF THE GOSPEL
Even them who kept thy truth so pure of old,
When all our fathers worshipped stocks and stones,
Forget not: in thy book record their groans
Who were thy sheep, and in their ancient fold
Slain by the bloody Piedmontese, that rolled
Purification in the old law did save,
And such as yet once more I trust to have Full sight of her in Heaven without restraint,
Mother with infant down the rocks. Their Came vested all in white, pure as her mind. Her face was veiled; yet to my fancied sight Love, sweetness, goodness, in her person shined
So clear as in no face with more delight.
The vales redoubled to the hills, and they To heaven. Their martyred blood and ashes sow
O'er all the Italian fields, where still doth sway
The triple tyrant; that from these may grow
A hundredfold, who, having learnt thy
Whom Jove's great son to her glad husband gave,
Rescued from Death by force, though pale and faint.
This thought might lead me through the
ON HIS DECEASED WIFE Methought I saw my late espoused saint Brought to me like Alcestis from the grave,
Mine, as whom washed from spot of childbed taint
This First Book proposes, first in brief, the whole subject,-Man's disobedience, and the loss thereupon of Paradise, wherein he was placed: then touches the prime cause of his fall,-the Serpent, or rather Satan in the Serpent; who, revolting from God, and drawing to his side many legions of Angels, was, by the command of God, driven out of Heaven, with all his crew, into the great Deep. Which action passed over, the Poem hastens into the midst of things; presenting Satan, with his Angels, now fallen into Hell-described here, not in the Center (for Heaven and earth may be supposed as yet not made, certainly not yet accursed), but in a place of utter darkness, fitliest called Chaos. Here Satan with his Angels, lying on the burning lake, thunderstruck and astonished, after a certain space recovers, as from confusion; calls up him who, next in order and dignity, lay by him: they confer of their miserable fall. Satan awakens all his legions, who lay till then in the same manner confounded. They rise; their numbers; array of battle; their
chief leaders named, according to the idols known afterwards in Canaan and the countries adjoining. To these Satan directs his speech; comforts them with hope yet of regaining Heaven; but tells them lastly of a new world and new kind of creature to be created, according to an ancient prophecy, or report, in Heaven-for that Angels were long before this visible creation was the opinion of many ancient Fathers. To find out the truth of this prophecy, and what to determine thereon, he refers to a full council. What his associates thence attempt. Pandemonium, the palace of Satan, rises, suddenly built out of the Deep: the infernal Peers there sit in council.
Of Man's first disobedience, and the fruit
Of that forbidden tree, whose mortal taste Brought death into the world, and all our woe,
With loss of Eden, till one greater Man
Of Oreb, or of Sinai, didst inspire
In the beginning how the heavens and
Rose out of Chaos: or, if Sion hill
Fast' by the oracle of God, I thence
Illumine; what is low, raise and support;
Say first for Heaven hides nothing
Nor the deep tract of Hell-say first what
Moved our grand Parents, in that happy
Favored of Heaven so highly, to fall off 30
Who first seduced them to that foul revolt?
Stirred up with envy and revenge, deceived
35 The mother of mankind, what time his pride
Had cast him out from Heaven, with all
Of rebel Angels, by whose aid, aspiring
If he opposed; and, with ambitious aim
With vain attempt. Him the Almighty
Hurled headlong flaming from the ethereal
To mortal men, he with his horrid crew Lay vanquished, rolling in the fiery gulf, Before all temples the upright heart and Confounded, though immortal. But his pure, Instruct me, for Thou know'st; Thou from the first
Reserved him to more wrath; for now the
Both of lost happiness and lasting pain 55
Wast present, and, with mighty wings out-
That witnessed huge affliction and dismay, Mixed with obdurate pride, and steadfast hate.
3 because of.
In utter darkness, and their portion set,
As from the center thrice to the utmost pole.
Oh how unlike the place from whence they fell!
There the companions of his fall, o'erwhelmed
With floods and whirlwinds of tempestuous fire,
He soon discerns; and weltering by his side
All is not lost: the unconquerable will,
With suppliant knee, and deify his power
That were an ignominy and shame be-
And this empyreal substance cannot fail;
Breaking the horrid silence, thus began:-
From him who, in the happy realms of
One next himself in power, and next in crime,
Long after known in Palestine, and named
The force of those dire arms? Yet not for
Nor what the potent Victor in his rage
United thoughts and counsels, equal hope
In equal ruin; into what pit thou seest From what highth fallen, so much the stronger proved
He with his thunder: and till then who
And high disdain from sense of injured merit,
That with the Mightiest raised me to
And to the fierce contention brought along
His utmost power with adverse power op-
In dubious battle on the plains of Heaven, And shook his throne. What though the field be lost?
We may with more successful hope resolve
To wage by force or guile eternal war,
So spake the apostate Angel, though in pain, Vaunting aloud, but racked with deep despair; And him thus answered soon his bold compeer:
Shall grieve him, if I fail not, and disturb His inmost counsels from their destined aim.
But see! the angry Victor hath recalled His ministers of vengeance and pursuit 170 Back to the gates of Heaven; the sulphurous hail,
Shot after us in storm, o'erblown hath laid
The fiery surge that from the precipice Of Heaven received us falling; and the thunder, Winged with red lightning and impetuous rage, Perhaps hath spent his shafts, and ceases
To bellow through the vast and boundless Deep.
Let us not slip3 the occasion, whether scorn Or satiate fury yield it from our Foe. Seest thou yon dreary plain, forlorn and wild,
The seat of desolation, void of light, Save what the glimmering of these livid flames
Casts pale and dreadful? Thither let us tend
From off the tossing of these fiery waves;
Our Enemy, our own loss how repair,
If not what resolution from despair." Thus Satan, talking to his nearest mate, With head uplift above the wave, and eyes That sparkling blazed; his other parts besides,
Prone on the flood, extended long and large,
Lay floating many a rood, in bulk as huge As whom the fables name of monstrous
Titanian, or Earth-born, that warred on Jove,