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Dusksong's Orrery

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The Story of Art
Ernst Hans Josef Gombrich
Ética a Nicómaco

Paradise Lost (Oxford World's Classics)

Paradise Lost (Oxford World's Classics) - John Milton, Philip Pullman, Michael Burghers, P.P. Bouche

O ye old blind master of tale thus long

Though in darkness sole left but not of light

Removed: what heavenly orient beam

Must lone hath shone upon the intellect

Of thine and spring divine inspiration.

O weaver of the story of man: in

A single narrative alone it stands

But encompassing all the theatre

Which is humanity: what is the fall

Of fair ancestral couple first if not

The fall of every human thence: all spite

And malice, Pandemonium’s domain,

Lay dormant not but endlessly renewed

As each day trial over trial’s heaped.

But meekness twined along obedience,

A foul conscription fated, shatters soon:

To yearn for more than what allotted is

To tempters ever inner found transgress

Is destiny and doom to man reserved,

If self-caused doom it be for who but God

Hath tilled lone action impious upon

His seed most pure and made of guilt first free?

Can thus be sin among the offspring found,

Amid the serpent’s bruisers, children all

To Eve, if she of Adam's rib was bred

And he in turn creation prime of God?

Is one fit perfect ergo capable sole

Of art imperfect? Proved thus false, decreed

The godhead then perdition void of flight.

Of tyrants chthonic is this fair land plagued

At length; what need exists of petulant

Unearthly lords? Be gone creator sad!

In mischief made, in mischief we thus fell.

But leave to us this all corrupted plane:

Though our poor beating hearts in darkness cast

With hope never brightest glimmer still

That holy edifice be built from ruin.

To free will bound, to freedom our not lost.

O father high who hath forsaken us

In our raw hour of need! So, tarry not

In cause thence solitary, made next strong:

Within ourselves long godhood we soon found.

On heaven earth and earth in heaven’s gone,

Left unregainable, but I tell thee

A paradise as such is better lost.


(Thank you for reading that! Actual [practical] review: beautifully crafted verse, Milton's a true master when it comes to developing eternal characters. If you're even remotely interested in epic poetry please be kind to yourself and read this.)