1746 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

John Milton

William Collins, in "Ode on the Poetical Character" Odes (1746) 17-18.



High on some cliff to Heaven up-piled,
Of rude access, of prospect wild,
Where, tangled round the jealous steep,
Strange shades o'erbrow the valleys deep,
And holy genii guard the rock,
Its glooms embrown, its springs unlock,
While on its rich ambitious head,
An Eden, like his own, lies spread;
I view that oak, the fancied glades among,
By which as Milton lay, his evening ear,
From many a cloud that dropped ethereal dew,
Nigh sphered in heaven its native strains could hear:
On which that ancient trump he reached was hung;
Thither oft his glory greeting,
From Waller's myrtle shades retreating,
With many a vow from hope's aspiring tongue,
My trembling feet his guiding steps pursue:
In vain-such bliss to one alone
Of all the sons of soul was known,
And Heaven and Fancy, kindred powers,
Have now o'erturned the inspiring bowers,
Or curtained close such scene from every future view.