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bas-672 Prevented, spares to tell thee yet by deeds What it intends ; till first I know of thee, What thing thou art, thus double-formed; and why In this infernal vale first met, thou call'st Me father, and that phantasm call'st my son: I know thee not, nor ever saw till now Sight more detestable than him and thee.
To whom thus the Portress of hell-gate replied. Hast thou forgot me then, and do I seem Now in thine eye so foul ? once deem'd so fair In Heaven, when at the assembly, and in sight Of all the Seraphim with thee combin'd In bold conspiracy against Heaven's King, All on a sudden miserable pain Surpris'd thee, dim thine eyes and dizzy swum In darkness, while thy head flames thick and fasť Threw forth ; till, on the left side opening wide, Likest to thee in shape and countenance bright, Then shining heavenly fair, a goddess arm’d, Out of thy head I sprung: Amazement seis'd All the host of Heaven; back they recoil'd afraid At first, and called me Sin, and for a sign Portentous held me; but, familiar grown, I pleas'd, and with attractive graces won The most averse, thee chiefly, who full oft Thyself in me thy perfect image viewing Becam’st enamour'd, and such joy thou took'st With me in secret, that my womb conceir'd
A growing burden. Mean while war arose,
you. you These yelling monsters, that with ceaseless cry Surround me, as thou saw'st, hourly conceiv'd And hourly born, with sorrow infinite To me; for, when they list into the womb That bred them they return, and howl and gnaw My bowels, their repast; then bursting forth Afresh with conscious terrours vex me round, That rest or intermissson none I find. Before mine eyes in opposition sits Grim Death, my son and foe; who sets them on, And me his parent would full soon devour For want of other prey, but that he knows His end with mine involv’d; and knows that I Should prove a bitter morsel, and his bane, Whenever that shall be ; so Fate pronounc'd. But thou, O Father! I forewarn thee, shun His deadly arrow; neither vainly hope To be invulnerable in those bright arms, Though temper’d heavenly; for, that mortal dint, Save he who reigns above, none can resist.
She finish'd; and the subtle Fiend his lore Soon learn’d, now milder, and thus answer'd smooth. Dear Daughter! since thou claim'st me for thy sire, And my fair son here show'st me, the dear pledge Of daliance had with thee in Heaven, and joys Then sweet, now sad to mention, through dire change Befallen us, unforeseen, unthought of; know, I come no enemy, but to set free
and and down unseen
The key of this infernal pit by due,
75702.5 And by command of Heaven's all-powerful King I keep, by him forbidden to unlock These adamantine gates; against all force Death ready stands to interpose his dart, Fearless to be o'ermatch'd by living might. But what I owe to his commands above Who hates me, and has bither thrust me down Into this gloom of Tartarus profound, To sit in hateful office here confin'd, Inhabitants of Heaven, and heavenly-born, Here in perpetual agony and pain, With terrours and with clamours compass'd round Of mine own brood, that on my bowels feed? Thou art my father, thou my author, thou My being gav’st me; whom should I obey But thee? whom follow? thou wilt bring me soon To that new world of light and bliss, among The Gods who live at ease, where I shall reign, At thy right hand voluptuous, as beseems Thy daughter, and thy darling, without end.
Thus saying, from her side the fatal key, Sad instrument of all our woe, she took ; And, towards the gate rolling her bestial train, Forthwith the huge portcullis high up drew Which but herself, not all the Stygian Powers Could once have mov’d; then in the key-hole turris The intricate wards, and every bolt and bar Of massy
iron or solid rock with ease