[Milton-L] Re: unfallen psychology

Carl Bellinger bcarlb at comcast.net
Tue Jul 1 21:36:01 EDT 2008


             From: "richard strier" <rastrier at uchicago.edu>

> Re Milton and what English could do, I think the question was
> what he thought poetry could do.  And I think he had a VERY
> high opinion of this (and of his own capacities with regard
> to it).

I agree, yes, a very high opinion; and I would ask: to what extent M's 
enthusiasm for what poetry can do, and what his own English poetry can do, 
is based in the mere music of it?  I mean, of course, the great music, 
instinct through all proportions low and high. Isn't the musician's volant 
touch, fleeing and pursuing transverse, Milton's own versifying?  Is there 
any shadow of pre or post lapsarian problematics in the lyric context and 
achievement of  Paradise Lost? What nuisance is there --of sin and degrees 
or forms of regeneration, where the Muses haunt clear spring and shady grove 
and sunny hill? Sometimes I think Milton is a happy pagan, a happy happy 
pagan.

But I should think  Hannibal Hamlin's work in English translations of the 
Psalms could draw a  perspective across this question.... Here's hoping he 
might weigh in.  -Carl 



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