. © 1999 . Joseph Lanzara . All rights reserved

John Milton's Paradise Lost

III-1. Hail holy light, ofspring of Heav'n first-born, / Or of th' Eternal Coeternal beam / May I express thee unblam'd? since God is light, / And never but in unapproached light / Dwelt from Eternitie, dwelt then in thee, / Bright effluence of bright essence increate. / Or hear'st thou rather pure Ethereal stream,

III-1. Hail, holy light. You were here forever, like God.

III-8. Whose Fountain who shall tell? before the Sun, Before the Heavens thou wert,

III-8. You were here before the sun existed.

III-9. and at the voice / Of God, as with a Mantle didst invest / The rising world of waters dark and deep, / Won from the void and formless infinite.

III-9. When God said, “Let there be light,” you came to light up the creation of the world.

III-13. Thee I re-visit now with bolder wing, / Escap't the Stygian Pool, though long detain'd / In that obscure sojourn, while in my flight / Through utter and through middle darkness borne / With other notes then to th' Orphean Lyre / I sung of Chaos and Eternal Night, / Taught by the heav'nly Muse to venture down / The dark descent, and up to reascend, / Though hard and rare:

III-13. I'm finished talking about Hell for a while.

III-21. thee I revisit safe, / And feel thy sovran vital Lamp;

III-21. Now I want your light to shine on me.

III-23. but thou / Revisit'st not these eyes, that rowle in vain / To find thy piercing ray, and find no dawn; / So thick a drop serene hath quencht thir Orbs, / Or dim suffusion veild. Yet not the more / Cease I to wander where the Muses haunt / Cleer Spring, or shadie Grove, or Sunnie Hill,

III-23. I'm blind, so it won't help my eyes, but that doesn't stop me from enjoying hearing about beautiful places.

III-29. Smit with the love of sacred Song; but chief / Thee Sion and the flowrie Brooks beneath / That wash thy hallowd feet, and warbling flow,

III-29. I love poetry, especially in the Bible.

III-32. Nightly I visit: nor somtimes forget / Those other two equal'd with me in Fate, / So were I equal'd with them in renown, / Blind Thamyris and blind Mæonides, / And Tiresias and Phineus Prophets old. / Then feed on thoughts, that voluntarie move / Harmonious numbers;

III-32. There were many blind men in history and in legend who had great thoughts and wrote great poetry.

III-38. as the wakeful Bird / Sings darkling, and in shadiest Covert hid / Tunes her nocturnal Note.

III-38. The nightingale sings beautifully in the dark.

III-40. Thus with the Year / Seasons return, but not to me returns / Day, or the sweet approach of Ev'n or Morn, / Or sight of vernal bloom, or Summers Rose, / Or flocks, or heards, or human face divine;

III-40. The seasons change, day turns to night, there are flowers, birds, and beautiful faces. But I can't see any of it.

III-45. But cloud in stead, and ever-during dark / Surrounds me, from the chearful wayes of men / Cut off, and for the Book of knowledg fair / Presented with a Universal blanc / Of Nature's works to mee expung'd and ras'd, / And wisdome at one entrance quite shut out.

III-45. I can't learn anything by looking around.

III-51. So much the rather thou Celestial light / Shine inward, and the mind through all her powers / Irradiate, there plant eyes, all mist from thence / Purge and disperse, that I may see and tell / Of things invisible to mortal sight.

III-51. So please shine your light inside me so I’ll be able to see and tell about things people can't see.

III-56. Now had the Almighty Father from above, / From the pure Empyrean where he sits / High Thron'd above all highth, bent down his eye, / His own works and their works at once to view:

III-56. Now I'm imagining how God looked down on his creation from Heaven.

III-60. About him all the Sanctities of Heaven / Stood thick as Starrs, and from his sight receiv'd / Beatitude past utterance;

III-60. All the angels were gathered around him. They were greatly blessed just by being in his presence.

III-62. on his right / The radiant image of his Glory sat,

III-62. His son, Messiah, sat on his right side.

III-64. His onely Son; On Earth he first beheld / Our two first Parents, yet the onely two / Of mankind, in the happie Garden plac't, / Reaping immortal fruits of joy and love, / Uninterrupted joy, unrivald love / In blissful solitude;

III-69. He looked down into Hell and all the way up to the dark side of Heaven. There he saw Satan getting ready to land on the outer shell of our universe.

. . .




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