John Milton's "On His Blindness" is an English sonnet about a man who surrenders himself to the will of God. In it, Milton confesses that midway through his life, he has been rendered blind and suffers great personal grief to the point that his only hope is in the mercy of God. In many ways, this poem is an allegory, in that Milton uses his story to represent universal plight and struggling among mankind.Continue Reading
Milton also utilizes personification in this sonnet. He turns "patience" into a being that he can speak to, and that can bring him salvation.
This is an autobiographical meditation inward, in which the Petrarchan sonnet format typically used to write about love is instead employed to write about suffering and redemption. It was written in 1655, a few years after Milton became completely blind. He believes that his blindness came through his labor, and that his labor was for God. This is vital, because Milton emphasizes in the piece that God judges man by the work he does for Him. One famous line in the poem that underscores his value of servitude is Milton's statement, "They also serve who only stand and wait."
Although he bemoaned his failing eyesight, Milton wrote two of his greatest works, "Paradise Lost" and "Paradise Regained," after he became blind.Learn more about Poetry
Sonnet 16, also known as "On His Blindness," by John Milton finds the poet contemplating his usefulness to God in his present state of being blind. The sonnet was written after Milton lost his eyesight in 1652.Full Answer >
Two English poems that use many allusions are John Milton's "Paradise Lost" and T.S. Eliot's "The Waste Land." For instance, the first line of "Paradise Lost" mentions "man's first disobedience," an allusion to Adam's disobedience to God in the book of Genesis. Allusion is a very common literary device by which a writer intentionally but indirectly references another work, especially one of religious, mythological or literary significance.Full Answer >
Ben Jonson's poem "Still to be neat, still to be dressed" discusses the meticulous fashion habits of a woman and ultimately proclaims that such habits obscure a person's true beauty. The poem's alternate title, "Simplex Munditiis," is a Latin phrase meaning "simple elegance." This title expresses the idea that the speaker prefers an artless beauty to an artificial one. This poem is not a sonnet, for sonnets have 14 lines.Full Answer >
Elizabeth Barrett Browning's poem "How do I love thee" from her collection "Sonnets from the Portuguese" is an example of a sonnet. This short poem is in the Petrarchan sonnet form.Full Answer >