I reached a rocky ledge above a sheltered beach
and sat, book in hand,
glancing out to sea.
In the distance, swathed in mist,
the familiar headland hides ;
seagulls mew flying low; cormorants dive and fish ..
while within the pages the battle rages
between armies of darkness and the light:
overturned and hurled ..
the headland swirls with the thundrous power
of the poet’s vision.
Blind, but like an eagle on the heights
he saw beyond the range of human sight;
encompassed Paradise and Hell;
divined the duel of intellects;
dared to write a dialogue between Satan
In beauteous words he sang of lyrical days
in Eden’s innocence and what befell
Adam and Eve:
in that garden of ultimate bliss
he had heard the serpent’s hiss.
The sea-mist has lifted and in sparklets of spray,
the cormorants, sleek as black missiles
propel from the waves.
I take a last look at Paradise Lost,
then, gathering my thoughts,
reluctantly I close my book.