Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained (Signet Classics)
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These controversial epic poems demonstrate Milton's genius for fusing sense and sound, classicism and innovation, narrative and drama in profound explorations of the moral problems of God's justice-and what it truly means to be human.
call’st Me father, and that phantasm call’st my son. I know thee not, nor ever saw till now Sight more detestable than him and thee.” T’ whom thus the Portress of Hell-gate replied:— “Hast thou forgot me, then; and do I seem Now in thine eye so foul?—once deemed so fair In Heaven, when at th’ assembly, and in sight Of all the Seraphim with thee combined In bold conspiracy against Heaven’s King, All on a sudden miserable pain Surprised thee, dim thine eyes and dizzy swum In darkness,
Death ready stands to interpose his dart, Fearless to be o’ermatched by living might. But what owe I to his commands above, Who hates me, and hath hither thrust me down Into this gloom of Tartarus profound, To sit in hateful office here confined, Inhabitant of Heaven and heavenly born— Here in perpetual agony and pain, With terrors and with clamours compassed round Of mine own brood, that on my bowels feed? Thou art my father, thou my author, thou My being gav’st me; whom should I obey
shines, Whom else no creature can behold; on thee Impressed the effulgence of his glory abides, Transfused on thee his ample Spirit rests. He Heaven of Heavens and all the Powers therein By thee created; and by thee threw down The aspiring Dominations: Thou that day Thy Father’s dreadful thunder didst not spare, Nor stop thy flaming chariot-wheels, that shook Heaven’s everlasting frame, while o’er the necks Thou drovest of warring Angels disarrayed. Back from pursuit thy Powers with
possession such, not only of right, I call ye, and declare ye now; returned Successful beyond hope, to lead ye forth Triumphant out of this infernal pit Abominable, accursed, the house of woe, And dungeon of our tyrant: Now possess, As Lords, a spacious world, to our native Heaven Little inferior, by my adventure hard With peril great achieved. Long were to tell What I have done; what suffered; with what pain Voyaged th’ unreal, vast, unbounded deep Of horrible confusion; over which
unsay, feign, flatter, or abjure? But thou art placed above me; thou art Lord; From thee I can, and must, submiss, endure Cheek or reproof, and glad to scape so quit. Hard are the ways of truth, and rough to walk, Smooth on the tongue discoursed, pleasing to the ear, And tunable as sylvan pipe or song; What wonder, then, if I delight to hear Her dictates from thy mouth? most men admire Virtue who follow not her lore. Permit me To hear thee when I come (since no man comes), And talk at