As P-i-R pens this note we're only an hour or so away from John Milton's 399th birthday. And that means only 3 weeks and a couple of days away from the start of his 400th anniversary year! A fine time to remember him therefore.
A few lines from the blind poet's 19th sonnet 'On His Blindness' should suffice:
When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodged with me useless ...
. . .
'...God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts. Who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best ...
. . .
They also serve who only stand and wait.'
Born December 9th in 1608 in Bread Street, Cheapside he died in 1674
aged 66. He defended his love of learning and declined to get a job or
take holy orders. And who can blame him?