[Milton-L] elusive?

Horace Jeffery Hodges jefferyhodges at yahoo.com
Sun Aug 27 12:45:10 EDT 2006


Regarding Carl's query, I'm not sure that this is
'quieter' than other passages, but there's something
mysterious and elusive about it:

...Thou from the first
Wast present, and with mighty wings outspread
Dove-like satst brooding on the vast Abyss
And mad'st it pregnant... (PL 1.19-22)

There is -- for me -- something uncanny about this
dove-like presence with mighty wings outspread
brooding yet impregnating a vast abyss.

The more I reflect upon the image, the harder it is to
grasp. It seems to pull together disparate elements
that hold together in paradoxical tension.

Is it a dove? An eagle? An albatross?

How can it brood and yet make pregnant? Is it male or
female?

Is it hovering or resting?

I find myself brooding about it...

Jeffery Hodges

> --- carl bellinger <bcarlb at comcast.net> wrote:
> 
> > Thanks to all who responded to my query a few
> weeks
> > back, "Re: Strier, 
> > disguised departures," on possible mystic
> > mis-directions in PL. The 
> > references are most helpful!
> > 
> > I would like to ask, quite apart from specific
> > conundrums like "fit audience 
> > though few" or "hope no higher," if any of you
> have
> > wondered at moments 
> > whether, for all its bright and symphonic and
> > garrulous surface, Paradise 
> > Lost doesn't seem to show glimmerings now and
> again
> > of --how to call it?--  
> > of brighter and richer (and quieter?) things? If
> so,
> > are there particular 
> > phrases or passages that come to mind?
> > 
> > Carl 
> > 
> > 
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University Degrees:

Ph.D., History, U.C. Berkeley
(Doctoral Thesis: "Food as Synecdoche in John's Gospel and Gnostic Texts")
M.A., History of Science, U.C. Berkeley
B.A., English Language and Literature, Baylor University

Email Address:

jefferyhodges at yahoo.com

Blog:

http://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/

Office Address:

Assistant Professor Horace Jeffery Hodges
Department of English Language and Literature
Korea University
136-701 Anam-dong, Seongbuk-gu
Seoul
South Korea

Home Address:

Dr. Sun-Ae Hwang and Dr. Horace Jeffery Hodges
Sehan Apt. 102-2302
Sinnae-dong 795
Jungrang-gu
Seoul 131-770
South Korea


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