1927 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Dr. John Armstrong

C. S. Lewis to his brother, 3 September 1927; Letters of C. S. Lewis (1966) 122.



I got the poetical works of Armstrong, Dyer, and Green. Armstrong wrote a poem in Miltonic blank verse on The Art of Preserving Health which I have read with huge enjoyment. It is beyond all parody as a specimen of the noble art of making poetry by translating ordinary sentences into Miltonic diction. Thus "some peope can't eat eggs" is rendered,

Some even the generous nutriment detest
Which in the shell, the sleeping embryo rears.

If one eats too much fat,

The irresoluble oil
So gentle late and blandishing, in floods
Of rancid bile o'erflows; what tumults hence
What horrors rise, were nauseous to relate.