Thursday, 23 September 2010

John Milton’s musings

Did you enjoy Paradise Lost?
Wasn’t Milton an awesome poet?
Well, Jennifer Batt, a lecturer at Oxford University, came across this poem "by Milton" in a long-forgotten volume called the Oxford and Cambridge Miscellany Poems, published in 1708, 34 years after the poet's death.

Extempore upon a Faggot

"Have you not in a Chimney seen
A Faggot which is moist and green
How coyly it receives the Heat
And at both ends do's weep and sweat?
So fares it with a tender Maid
When first upon her Back she's laid
But like dry Wood th' experienced Dame
Cracks and rejoices in the Flame."

I’ll leave you to work out what this is about.

So, Milton was clearly a bit of a lad, under his zealous Puritan façade - That is if he did really write this poem.

I must admit though, 'Extempore upon a Faggot' seems more like the sort of thing that my favourite poet the Earl of Rochester would have created !


MrsF said...

Regrettably I am not a artsy person so 'extempore upon a faggot' makes me think of dinner. I do not think there is any misinterpreting to be done about the nature of the above poem however - it seems fairly obvious even to me.

I would be rather cautious of inviting Mr Milton to dinner to discuss his work as a) he is dead and b) he sounds like a sexual predator.

Sue's Blog said...

Your post made me laugh - I'd not seen Milton in that light before.