[Milton-L] Humble Request

Horace Jeffery Hodges horacejeffery at gmail.com
Tue Feb 19 14:58:14 EST 2013


If it sounds trite, perhaps that's due to the cliché "Right on!" At least
for some of us who recall that expression from the sixties . . .

Jeffery Hodges

Dear scholars,
>
> I have read every article and chapter on "To Cyriack Skinner upon his
> Blindness" that I could get my hands on and am working through the tone of
> lines 6-9:
> Yet I argue not
> Against Heaven's hand or will, nor bate a jot
> Of heart of hope; but sill bear up and steer
> Right onward. What supports me dost thou ask?
>
> Many editors note the revisions to the poem, including replacing
> "Uphillward" with "Right onward." In addition to more clearly initiating
> the sense of traveling/sailing  that other elements of the poem produce,
> "Right onward" sounds to me as purposefully trite, more along the lines of
> Milton's reference to the "fatal and perfidious bark" in "Lycidas," a trite
> explanation called in to be ultimately rejected. I see the four aspirated
> "h" sounds in the first halves of lines 7 and 8 as contributing to that
> tone.
>
> What are your thoughts? Many thanks.
>
> Adios,
> Angelica Duran
>
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