Paradise Lost, by John Milton


The Argument

Adam inquires concerning celestial Motions, is doubtfully answer’d, and exhorted to search rather things more worthy of knowledge: Adam assents, and still desirous to detain Raphael, relates to him what he remember’d since his own Creation, his placing in Paradise, his talk with God concerning solitude and fit society, his first meeting and Nuptials with Eve, his discourse with the Angel thereupon; who after admonitions repeated departs.

The angel ended, and in Adams Eare

So Charming left his voice, that he a while

Thought him still speaking, still stood fixt to hear;

Then as new wak’t thus gratefully repli’d.

What thanks sufficient, or what recompence

Equal have I to render thee, Divine

Hystorian, who thus largely hast allayd

The thirst I had of knowledge, and voutsaf’t

This friendly condescention to relate

Things else by me unsearchable, now heard

With wonder, but delight, and, as is due,

With glorie attributed to the high

Creator; some thing yet of doubt remaines,

Which onely thy solution can resolve.

When I behold this goodly Frame, this World

Of Heav’n and Earth consisting, and compute,

Thir magnitudes, this Earth a spot, a graine,

An Atom, with the Firmament compar’d

And all her numberd Starrs, that seem to rowle

Spaces incomprehensible (for such

Thir distance argues and thir swift return

Diurnal) meerly to officiate light

Round this opacous Earth, this punctual spot,

One day and night; in all thir vast survey

Useless besides, reasoning I oft admire,

How Nature wise and frugal could commit

Such disproportions, with superfluous hand

So many nobler Bodies to create,

Greater so manifold to this one use,

For aught appeers, and on thir Orbs impose

Such restless revolution day by day

Repeated, while the sedentarie Earth,

That better might with farr less compass move,

Serv’d by more noble then her self, attaines

Her end without least motion, and receaves,

As Tribute such a sumless journey brought

Of incorporeal speed, her warmth and light;

Speed, to describe whose swiftness Number failes.

So spake our Sire, and by his count’nance seemd

Entring on studious thoughts abstruse, which Eve

Perceaving where she sat retir’d in sight,

With lowliness Majestic from her seat,

And Grace that won who saw to wish her stay,

Rose, and went forth among her Fruits and Flours,

To visit how they prosper’d, bud and bloom,

Her Nurserie; they at her coming sprung

And toucht by her fair tendance gladlier grew.

Yet went she not, as not with such discourse

Delighted, or not capable her care

Of what was high: such pleasure she reserv’d,

Adam relating, she sole Auditress;

Her Husband the Relater she preferr’d

Before the Angel, and of him to ask

Chose rather: hee, she knew would intermix

Grateful digressions, and solve high dispute

With conjugal Caresses, from his Lip

Not Words alone forth her. O when meet now

Such pairs, in Love and mutual Honour joyn’d?

With Goddess-like demeanour forth she went;

Not unattended, for on her as Queen

A pomp of winning Graces waited still,

And from about her shot Darts of desire

Into all Eyes to wish her still in sight.

And Raphael now to Adam’s doubt propos’d

Benevolent and facil thus repli’d.

To ask or search I blame thee not, for Heav’n

Is as the Book of God before thee set,

Wherein to read his wondrous Works, and learne

His Seasons, Hours, or Days, or Months, or Yeares;

This to attain, whether Heav’n move or Earth,

Imports not, if thou reck’n right, the rest

From Man or Angel the great Architect

Did wisely to conceal, and not divulge

His secrets to be scann’d by them who ought

Rather admire; or if they list to try

Conjecture, he his Fabric of the Heav’ns

Hath left to thir disputes, perhaps to move

His laughter at thir quaint Opinions wide

Hereafter, when they come to model Heav’n

And calculate the Starrs, how they will weild

The mightie frame, how build, unbuild, contrive

To save appeerances, how gird the Sphear

With Centric and Eccentric scribl’d o’re,

Cycle and Epicycle, Orb in Orb:

Alreadie by thy reasoning this I guess,

Who art to lead thy ofspring, and supposest

That Bodies bright and greater should not serve

The less not bright, nor Heav’n such journies run,

Earth sitting still, when she alone receaves

The benefit: consider first, that Great

Or Bright inferrs not Excellence: the Earth

Though, in comparison of Heav’n so small,

Nor glistering, may of solid good containe

More plenty then the Sun that barren shines,

Whose vertue on it self workes no effect,

But in the fruitful Earth; there first receavd

His beams, unactive else, thir vigor find.

Yet not to Earth are those bright Luminaries

Officious, but to thee Earths habitant.

And for the Heav’ns wide Circuit, let it speak

The Makers high magnificence, who built

So spacious, and his Line stretcht out so farr;

That Man may know he dwells not in his own;

An Edifice too large for him to fill,

Lodg’d in a small partition, and the rest

Ordain’d for uses to his Lord best known.

The swiftness of those Circles attribute,

Though numberless, to his Omnipotence,

That to corporeal substances could adde

Speed almost Spiritual; mee thou thinkst not slow,

Who since the Morning hour set out from Heav’n

Where God resides, and ere mid-day arriv’d

In Eden, distance inexpressible

By Numbers that have name. But this I urge,

Admitting Motion in the Heav’ns, to shew

Invalid that which thee to doubt it mov’d;

Not that I so affirm, though so it seem

To thee who hast thy dwelling here on Earth.

God to remove his wayes from human sense,

Plac’d Heav’n from Earth so farr, that earthly sight,

If it presume, might erre in things too high,

And no advantage gaine. What if the Sun

Be Center to the World, and other Starrs

By his attractive vertue and thir own

Incited, dance about him various rounds?

Thir wandring course now high, now low, then hid,

Progressive, retrograde, or standing still,

In six thou seest, and what if to these

The Planet Earth, so stedfast though she seem,

Insensibly three different Motions move?

Which else to several Sphears thou must ascribe,

Mov’d contrarie with thwart obliquities,

Or save the Sun his labour, and that swift

Nocturnal and Diurnal rhomb suppos’d,

Invisible else above all Starrs, the Wheele

Of Day and Night; which needs not thy beleefe,

If Earth industrious of her self fetch Day

Travelling East, and with her part averse

From the Suns beam meet Night, her other part

Still luminous by his ray. What if that light

Sent from her through the wide transpicuous aire,

To the terrestrial Moon be as a Star

Enlightning her by Day, as she by Night

This Earth? reciprocal, if Land be there,

Feilds and Inhabitants: Her spots thou seest

As Clouds, and Clouds may rain, and Rain produce

Fruits in her soft’nd Soile, for some to eate

Allotted there; and other Suns perhaps

With thir attendant Moons thou wilt descrie

Communicating Male and Female Light,

Which two great Sexes animate the World,

Stor’d in each Orb perhaps with some that live.

For such vast room in Nature unpossest

By living Soule, desert and desolate,

Onely to shine, yet scarce to contribute

Each Orb a glimps of Light, conveyd so far

Down to this habitable, which returnes

Light back to them, is obvious to dispute.

But whether thus these things, or whether not,

Whether the Sun predominant in Heav’n

Rise on the Earth, or Earth rise on the Sun,

Hee from the East his flaming rode begin,

Or Shee from West her silent course advance

With inoffensive pace that spinning sleeps

On her soft Axle, while she paces Eev’n,

And bears thee soft with the smooth Air along,

Sollicit not thy thoughts with matters hid,

Leave them to God above, him serve and feare;

Of other Creatures, as him pleases best,

Wherever plac’t, let him dispose: joy thou

In what he gives to thee, this Paradise

And thy fair Eve: Heav’n is for thee too high

To know what passes there; be lowlie wise:

Think onely what concernes thee and thy being;

Dream not of other Worlds, what Creatures there

Live, in what state, condition or degree,

Contented that thus farr hath been reveal’d

Not of Earth onely but of highest Heav’n.

To whom thus Adam cleerd of doubt, repli’d.

How fully hast thou satisfi’d mee, pure

Intelligence of Heav’n, Angel serene,

And freed from intricacies, taught to live,

The easiest way, nor with perplexing thoughts

To interrupt the sweet of Life, from which

God hath bid dwell farr off all anxious cares,

And not molest us, unless we our selves

Seek them with wandring thoughts, and notions vaine.

But apte the Mind or Fancie is to roave

Uncheckt, and of her roaving is no end;

Till warn’d, or by experience taught, she learn

That not to know at large of things remote

From use, obscure and suttle, but to know

That which before us lies in daily life,

Is the prime Wisdom, what is more, is fume,

Or emptiness, or fond impertinence,

And renders us in things that most concerne

Unpractis’d, unprepar’d, and still to seek.

Therefore from this high pitch let us descend

A lower flight, and speak of things at hand

Useful, whence haply mention may arise

Of somthing not unseasonable to ask

By sufferance, and thy wonted favour deign’d.

Thee I have heard relating what was don

Ere my remembrance: now hear mee relate

My Storie, which perhaps thou hast not heard;

And Day is yet not spent; till then thou seest

How suttly to detaine thee I devise,

Inviting thee to hear while I relate,

Fond, were it not in hope of thy reply:

For while I sit with thee, I seem in Heav’n,

And sweeter thy discourse is to my eare

Then Fruits of Palm-tree pleasantest to thirst

And hunger both, from labour, at the houre

Of sweet repast; they satiate, and soon fill,

Though pleasant, but thy words with Grace Divine

Imbu’d, bring to thir sweetness no satietie.

To whom thus Raphael answer’d heav’nly meek.

Nor are thy lips ungraceful, Sire of men,

Nor tongue ineloquent; for God on thee

Abundantly his gifts hath also pour’d

Inward and outward both, his image faire:

Speaking or mute all comliness and grace

Attends thee, and each word, each motion formes

Nor less think wee in Heav’n of thee on Earth

Then of our fellow servant, and inquire

Gladly into the wayes of God with Man:

For God we see hath honour’d thee, and set

On Man his equal Love: say therefore on;

For I that Day was absent, as befell,

Bound on a voyage uncouth and obscure,

Farr on excursion toward the Gates of Hell;

Squar’d in full Legion (such command we had)

To see that none thence issu’d forth a spie,

Or enemie, while God was in his work,

Least hee incenst at such eruption bold,

Destruction with Creation might have mixt.

Not that they durst without his leave attempt,

But us he sends upon his high behests

For state, as Sovran King, and to enure

Our prompt obedience. Fast we found, fast shut

The dismal Gates, and barricado’d strong;

But long ere our approaching heard within

Noise, other then the sound of Dance or Song,

Torment, and lowd lament, and furious rage.

Glad we return’d up to the coasts of Light

Ere Sabbath Eev’ning: so we had in charge.

But thy relation now; for I attend,

Pleas’d with thy words no less then thou with mine.

So spake the Godlike Power, and thus our Sire.

For Man to tell how human Life began

Is hard: for who himself beginning knew?

Desire with thee still longer to converse

Induc’d me. As new wak’t from soundest sleep

Soft on the flourie herb I found me laid

In Balmie Sweat, which with his Beames the Sun

Soon dri’d, and on the reaking moisture fed.

Strait toward Heav’n my wondring Eyes I turnd,

And gaz’d a while the ample Skie, till rais’d

By quick instinctive motion up I sprung,

As thitherward endevoring, and upright

Stood on my feet; about me round I saw

Hill, Dale, and shadie Woods, and sunnie Plaines,

And liquid Lapse of murmuring Streams, by these,

Creatures that livd, and movd, and walk’d, or flew,

Birds on the branches warbling; all things smil’d,

With fragrance and with joy my heart oreflow’d.

My self I then perus’d, and Limb by Limb

Survey’d, and sometimes went, and sometimes ran

With supple joints, as lively vigour led:

But who I was, or where, or from what cause,

Knew not; to speak I tri’d, and forthwith spake,

My Tongue obey’d and readily could name

What e’re I saw. Thou Sun, said I, faire Light,

And thou enlight’nd Earth, so fresh and gay,

Ye Hills and Dales, ye Rivers, Woods, and Plaines

And ye that live and move, fair Creatures, tell,

Tell, if ye saw, how came I thus, how here?

Not of my self; by some great Maker then,

In goodness and in power praeeminent;

Tell me, how may I know him, how adore,

From whom I have that thus I move and live,

And feel that I am happier then I know.

While thus I call’d, and stray’d I knew not whither,

From where I first drew Aire, and first beheld

This happie Light, when answer none return’d,

On a green shadie Bank profuse of Flours

Pensive I sate me down; there gentle sleep

First found me, and with soft oppression seis’d

My droused sense, untroubl’d, though I thought

I then was passing to my former state

Insensible, and forthwith to dissolve:

When suddenly stood at my Head a dream,

Whose inward apparition gently mov’d

My Fancy to believe I yet had being,

And livd: One came, methought, of shape Divine,

And said, thy Mansion wants thee, Adam, rise,

First Man, of Men innumerable ordain’d

First Father, call’d by thee I come thy Guide

To the Garden of bliss, thy seat prepar’d.

So saying, by the hand he took me rais’d,

And over Fields and Waters, as in Aire

Smooth sliding without step, last led me up

A woodie Mountain; whose high top was plaine,

A Circuit wide, enclos’d, with goodliest Trees

Planted, with Walks, and Bowers, that what I saw

Of Earth before scarce pleasant seemd. Each Tree

Load’n with fairest Fruit, that hung to the Eye

Tempting, stirr’d in me sudden appetite

To pluck and eate; whereat I wak’d, and found

Before mine Eyes all real, as the dream

Had lively shadowd: Here had new begun

My wandring, had not hee who was my Guide

Up hither, from among the Trees appeer’d,

Presence Divine. Rejoycing, but with aw

In adoration at his feet I fell

Submiss: he rear’d me, & Whom thou soughtst I am,

Said mildely, Author of all this thou seest

Above, or round about thee or beneath.

This Paradise I give thee, count it thine

To Till and keep, and of the Fruit to eate:

Of every Tree that in the Garden growes

Eate freely with glad heart; fear here no dearth:

But of the Tree whose operation brings

Knowledg of good and ill, which I have set

The Pledge of thy Obedience and thy Faith,

Amid the Garden by the Tree of Life,

Remember what I warne thee, shun to taste,

And shun the bitter consequence: for know,

The day thou eat’st thereof, my sole command

Transgrest, inevitably thou shalt dye;

From that day mortal, and this happie State

Shalt loose, expell’d from hence into a World

Of woe and sorrow. Sternly he pronounc’d

The rigid interdiction, which resounds

Yet dreadful in mine eare, though in my choice

Not to incur; but soon his cleer aspect

Return’d and gratious purpose thus renew’d.

Not onely these fair bounds, but all the Earth

To thee and to thy Race I give; as Lords

Possess it, and all things that therein live,

Or live in Sea, or Aire, Beast, Fish, and Fowle

In signe whereof each Bird and Beast behold

After thir kindes; I bring them to receave

From thee thir Names, and pay thee fealtie

With low subjection; understand the same

Of Fish within thir watry residence,

Not hither summond, since they cannot change

Thir Element to draw the thinner Aire.

As thus he spake, each Bird and Beast behold

Approaching two and two, These cowring low

With blandishment, each Bird stoop’d on his wing.

I nam’d them, as they pass’d, and understood

Thir Nature, with such knowledge God endu’d

My sudden apprehension: but in these

I found not what me thought I wanted still;

And to the Heav’nly vision thus presum’d.

O by what Name, for thou above all these,

Above mankinde, or aught then mankinde higher,

Surpassest farr my naming, how may I

Adore thee, Author of this Universe,

And all this good to man, for whose well being

So amply, and with hands so liberal

Thou hast provided all things: but with mee

I see not who partakes. In solitude

What happiness, who can enjoy alone,

Or all enjoying, what contentment find?

Thus I presumptuous; and the vision bright,

As with a smile more bright’nd, thus repli’d.

What call’st thou solitude, is not the Earth

With various living creatures, and the Aire

Replenisht, and all these at thy command

To come and play before thee, know’st thou not

Thir language and thir wayes, they also know,

And reason not contemptibly; with these

Find pastime, and heare rule; thy Realm is large.

So spake the Universal Lord, and seem’d

So ordering. I with leave of speech implor’d,

And humble deprecation thus repli’d.

Let not my words offend thee, Heav’nly Power,

My Maker, be propitious while I speak.

Hast thou not made me here thy substitute,

And these inferiour farr beneath me set?

Among unequals what societie

Can sort, what harmonie or true delight?

Which must be mutual, in proportion due

Giv’n and receiv’d; but in disparitie

The one intense, the other still remiss

Cannot well suite with either, but soon prove

Tedious alike: Of fellowship I speak

Such as I seek, fit to participate

All rational delight, wherein the brute

Cannot be human consort; they rejoyce

Each with thir kinde, Lion with Lioness;

So fitly them in pairs thou hast combin’d;

Much less can Bird with Beast, or Fish with Fowle

So well converse, nor with the Ox the Ape;

Wors then can Man with Beast, and least of all.

Whereto th’ Almighty answer’d, not displeas’d.

A nice and suttle happiness I see

Thou to thy self proposest, in the choice

Of thy Associates, Adam, and wilt taste

No pleasure, though in pleasure, solitarie.

What thinkst thou then of mee, and this my State,

Seem I to thee sufficiently possest

Of happiness, or not? who am alone

From all Eternitie, for none I know

Second to mee or like, equal much less.

How have I then with whom to hold converse

Save with the Creatures which I made, and those

To me inferiour, infinite descents

Beneath what other Creatures are to thee?

He ceas’d, I lowly answer’d. To attaine

The higth and depth of thy Eternal wayes

All human thoughts come short, Supream of things;

Thou in thy self art perfet, and in thee

Is no deficience found; not so is Man,

But in degree, the cause of his desire

By conversation with his like to help,

Or solace his defects. No need that thou

Shouldst propagat, already infinite;

And through all numbers absolute, though One;

But Man by number is to manifest

His single imperfection, and beget

Like of his like, this Image multipli’d,

In unitie defective, which requires

Collateral love, and deerest amitie.

Thou in thy secresie although alone,

Best with thy self accompanied, seek’st not

Social communication, yet so pleas’d,

Canst raise thy Creature to what highth thou wilt

Of Union or Communion, deifi’d;

I by conversing cannot these erect

From prone, nor in thir wayes complacence find.

Thus I embold’nd spake, and freedom us’d

Permissive, and acceptance found, which gain’d

This answer from the gratious voice Divine.

Thus farr to try thee Adam, I was pleas’d,

And finde thee knowing not of Beasts alone,

Which thou hast rightly nam’d, but of thy self,

Expressing well the spirit within thee free,

My Image, not imparted to the Brute,

Whose fellowship therefore unmeet for thee

Good reason was thou freely shouldst dislike,

And be so minded still; I, ere thou spak’st,

Knew it not good for Man to be alone,

And no such companie as then thou saw’st

Intended thee, for trial onely brought,

To see how thou could’st judge of fit and meet:

What next I bring shall please thee, be assur’d,

Thy likeness, thy fit help, thy other self,

Thy wish, exactly to thy hearts desire.

Hee ended, or I heard no more, for now

My earthly by his Heav’nly overpower’d,

Which it had long stood under, streind to the highth

In that celestial Colloquie sublime,

As with an object that excels the sense,

Dazl’d and spent, sunk down, and sought repair

Of sleep, which instantly fell on me, call’d

By Nature as in aide, and clos’d mine eyes.

Mine eyes he clos’d, but op’n left the Cell

Of Fancie my internal sight, by which

Abstract as in a transe methought I saw,

Though sleeping, where I lay, and saw the shape

Still glorious before whom awake I stood;

Who stooping op’nd my left side, and took

From thence a Rib, with cordial spirits warme,

And Life-blood streaming fresh; wide was the wound,

But suddenly with flesh fill’d up & heal’d:

The Rib he formd and fashond with his hands;

Under his forming hands a Creature grew,

Manlike, but different sex, so lovly faire,

That what seemd fair in all the World, seemd now

Mean, or in her summd up, in her containd

And in her looks, which from that time infus’d

Sweetness into my heart, unfelt before,

And into all things from her Aire inspir’d

The spirit of love and amorous delight.

She disappeerd, and left me dark, I Wak’d

To find her, or for ever to deplore

Her loss, and other pleasures all abjure:

When out of hope, behold her, not farr off,

Such as I saw her in my dream, adornd

With what all Earth or Heaven could bestow

To make her amiable: On she came,

Led by her Heav’nly Maker, though unseen,

And guided by his voice, nor uninformd

Of nuptial Sanctitie and marriage Rites:

Grace was in all her steps, Heav’n in her Eye,

In every gesture dignitie and love.

I overjoy’d could not forbear aloud.

This turn hath made amends; thou hast fulfill’d

Thy words, Creator bounteous and benigne,

Giver of all things faire, but fairest this

Of all thy gifts, nor enviest. I now see

Bone of my Bone, Flesh of my Flesh, my Self

Before me; Woman is her Name, of Man

Extracted; for this cause he shall forgoe

Father and Mother, and to his Wife adhere;

And they shall be one Flesh, one Heart, one Soule.

She heard me thus, and though divinely brought,

Yet Innocence and Virgin Modestie,

Her vertue and the conscience of her worth,

That would be woo’d, and not unsought be won,

Not obvious, not obtrusive, but retir’d,

The more desirable, or to say all,

Nature her self, though pure of sinful thought,

Wrought in her so, that seeing me, she turn’d;

I follow’d her, she what was Honour knew,

And with obsequious Majestie approv’d

My pleaded reason. To the Nuptial Bowre

I led her blushing like the Morn: all Heav’n,

And happie Constellations on that houre

Shed thir selectest influence; the Earth

Gave sign of gratulation, and each Hill;

Joyous the Birds; fresh Gales and gentle Aires

Whisper’d it to the Woods, and from thir wings

Flung Rose, flung Odours from the spicie Shrub,

Disporting, till the amorous Bird of Night

Sung Spousal, and bid haste the Eevning Star

On his Hill top, to light the bridal Lamp.

Thus I have told thee all my State, and brought

My Storie to the sum of earthly bliss

Which I enjoy, and must confess to find

In all things else delight indeed, but such

As us’d or not, works in the mind no change,

Nor vehement desire, these delicacies

I mean of Taste, Sight, Smell, Herbs, Fruits & Flours,

Walks, and the melodie of Birds; but here

Farr otherwise, transported I behold,

Transported touch; here passion first I felt,

Commotion strange, in all enjoyments else

Superiour and unmov’d, here onely weake

Against the charm of Beauties powerful glance.

Or Nature faild in mee, and left some part

Not proof enough such Object to sustain,

Or from my side subducting, took perhaps

More then enough; at least on her bestow’d

Too much of Ornament, in outward shew

Elaborate, of inward less exact.

For well I understand in the prime end

Of Nature her th’ inferiour, in the mind

And inward Faculties, which most excell,

In outward also her resembling less

His Image who made both, and less expressing

The character of that Dominion giv’n

O’re other Creatures; yet when I approach

Her loveliness, so absolute she seems

And in her self compleat, so well to know

Her own, that what she wills to do or say,

Seems wisest, vertuousest, discreetest, best;

All higher knowledge in her presence falls

Degraded, Wisdom in discourse with her

Looses discount’nanc’t, and like folly shewes;

Authoritie and Reason on her waite,

As one intended first, not after made

Occasionally; and to consummate all,

Greatness of mind and nobleness thir seat

Build in her loveliest, and create an awe

About her, as a guard Angelic plac’t.

To whom the Angel with contracted brow.

Accuse not Nature, she hath don her part;

Do thou but thine, and be not diffident

Of Wisdom, she deserts thee not, if thou

Dismiss not her, when most thou needst her nigh,

By attributing overmuch to things

Less excellent, as thou thy self perceav’st.

For what admir’st thou, what transports thee so,

An outside? fair no doubt, and worthy well

Thy cherishing, thy honouring, and thy love,

Not thy subjection: weigh with her thy self;

Then value: Oft times nothing profits more

Then self-esteem, grounded on just and right

Well manag’d; of that skill the more thou know’st,

The more she will acknowledge thee her Head,

And to realities yeild all her shows;

Made so adorn for thy delight the more,

So awful, that with honour thou maist love

Thy mate, who sees when thou art seen least wise.

But if the sense of touch whereby mankind

Is propagated seem such dear delight

Beyond all other, think the same voutsaf’t

To Cattel and each Beast; which would not be

To them made common & divulg’d, if aught

Therein enjoy’d were worthy to subdue

The Soule of Man, or passion in him move.

What higher in her societie thou findst

Attractive, human, rational, love

In loving thou dost well, in passion not,

Wherein true Love consists not; love refines

The thoughts, and heart enlarges, hath his seat

In Reason, and is judicious, is the scale

By which to heav’nly Love thou maist ascend,

Not sunk in carnal pleasure, for which cause

Among the Beasts no Mate for thee was found.

To whom thus half abash’t Adam repli’d.

Neither her out-side formd so fair, nor aught

In procreation common to all kindess

(Though higher of the genial Bed by far,

And with mysterious reverence I deem)

So much delights me, as those graceful acts,

Those thousand decencies that daily flow

From all her words and actions, mixt with Love

And sweet compliance, which declare unfeign’d

Union of Mind, or in us both one Soule:

Harmonie to behold in wedded pair

More grateful then harmonious sound to the eare.

Yet these subject not; I to thee disclose

What inward thence I feel, not therefore foild,

Who meet with various objects, from the sense

Variously representing; yet still free

Approve the best, and follow what I approve.

To love thou blam’st me not, for love thou saist

Leads up to Heav’n, is both the way and guide;

Bear with me then, if lawful what I ask;

Love not the heav’nly Spirits, and how thir Love

Express they, by looks onely, or do they mix

Irradiance, virtual or immediate touch?

To whom the Angel with a smile that glow’d

Celestial rosie red, Loves proper hue,

Answer’d. Let it suffice thee that thou know’st

Us happie, and without Love no happiness.

Whatever pure thou in the body enjoy’st

(And pure thou wert created) we enjoy

In eminence, and obstacle find none

Of membrane, joynt, or limb, exclusive barrs:

Easier then Air with Air, if Spirits embrace,

Total they mix, Union of Pure with Pure

Desiring; nor restrain’d conveyance need

As Flesh to mix with Flesh, or Soul with Soul.

But I can now no more; the parting Sun

Beyond the Earths green Cape and verdant Isles

Hesperean sets my Signal to depart.

Be strong, live happie, and love, but first of all

Him whom to love is to obey, and keep

His great command; take heed least Passion sway

Thy Judgement to do aught, which else free Will

Would not admit; thine and of all thy Sons

The weal or woe in thee is plac’t; beware.

I in thy persevering shall rejoyce,

And all the Blest: stand fast; to stand or fall

Free in thine own Arbitrement it lies.

Perfect within, no outward aid require;

And all temptation to transgress repel.

So saying, he arose; whom Adam thus

Follow’d with benediction. Since to part,

Go heavenly Guest, Ethereal Messenger,

Sent from whose sovran goodness I adore.

Gentle to me and affable hath been

Thy condescension, and shall be honour’d ever

With grateful Memorie: thou to mankind

Be good and friendly still, and oft return.

So parted they, the Angel up to Heav’n

From the thick shade, and Adam to his Bowre.

So parted they, the Angel up to Heav’n
From the thick shade, and Adam to his Bowre.

Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:58