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To reach, and feed at once both body and mind;
So saying, her rash hand in evil bour Forth reaching to the fruit, she pluck'd, she eat: Earth felt the wound; and Nature from her seat, Sighing through all her works, gave signs of woe, That all was lost. Back to the thicket slunk The guilty Serpent; and well might: for Eve Intent now wholly on her taste nought else Regarded, such delight till then, as seem'd, In fruit she never tasted, whether true Or fancy'd so, through expectation high Of knowledge: nor was Godhead from her thought. Greedily she ingorg?d without restraint, And knew not eating death. Satiate at length, And heighten'd as with wine, jocund and boon, Thus to herself she pleasingly began :
O sov?reign, virtuous, precious of all trees In Paradise, of operation bless'd To sapience, hitherto obscur’d, infam'd, And thy fair fruit let hang, as to no end Created; but henceforth my early care, Not without song, each morning, and due praise, Shall tend thee, and the fertile burden ease Of thy full branches offer'd free to all; Till dieted by thee I grow mature In knowledge, as the Gods, who all things know; Though others envy what they cannot give: For had the gift been theirs, it had not here Thus grown. Experience, next to thee I owe, Best guide; not following thee, I had remain'd In ignorance; thou open’st wisdom's way, And giv'st access, though secret she retire, And I perhaps am secret; Heav'n is high, High, and remote to see from thence distinct Each thing on earth; and other care perhaps May have diverted from continual watch Our great forbidder, safe with all his spies About him. But to Adam in what sort Shall I appear? shall I to him make known
As get my change, and give him to partake
So saying, from the tree her step she turn'd;
Thee I have miss'd, and thought it long, depriv'd Thy presence, agony of love till now Not felt, nor shall be twice; for never more Mean I to try, what rash untry'd I sought, The pain of absence from thy sight. But strange Hath been the cause, and wonderful to hear; This tree is not, as we are told, a tree Of danger tasted, not to eyif unknown Opening the way; but of divine effect To open eyes, and make them gods who taste; And hath been tasted such: the serpent wise, Or not restrain'd as we, or not obeying, Hath eaten of the fruit, and is become, Not dead, as we are threaten'd, but henceforth Endu'd with human voice and human sense, Reasoning to admiration, and with me Persuasively hath so prevailid, trat I Have also tasted, and have also found: Th’ effects to correspond; op'ner mine eyes, Dim erst, dilated spirits, ampler heart, And growing up to Godheads, which for thee Chiefly I sought, without thee can despise. For bliss, as thou hast part, to me is bliss : Tedious unshar'd with thee, and odious soon. Thou therefore also taste, that equal lot May, join us, equal joy, as equal love; Lest thou not tasting, different degree Disjoin us, and I then too late renounce Deity for thee, when fate will not permit.
Thus Eve with count'nance blithe her story told; But in her cheek distemper flushing glow'd: On th’ other side, Adam, soon as he heard The fatal trespass done by Eve, amaz’d, Astonish'd stood and blank, while horror chill Ran through his veins, and all his joints relax'd ; From his slack hand the garland, wreath'd for Eve Down dropt, and all the faded roses shed: Speechless he stood, and pale; till thus at length First to himself he inward silence broke:.
O fairest of creation, last and best
so having said, as one from sad dismay
Bold deed thou hast presum’d, adventrous Eve, And peril great provok'd, who thus hast dar'd, Had it been only coveting to eye That sacred fruit, sacred to abstinence, Much more to taste it, under ban to touch. But past who can recal, or done undo: Not God omnipotent, nor fate ; yet so Perhaps thou shalt not die, perhaps the fact Is not so heinous now, foretasted fruit, Profan'd first by the serpent, by him first Made common and unhallow'd ere our taste: Nor yet on him found deadly; he yet lives, Lives, as Uliou saidst, and gains to live as man, Higher degree of life; inducement strong
To us, as likely tasting to attain Proportional ascent, which cannot be But to be Gods, or Angels, Demi-gods. Nor can I think that God, Creator wise, Though threat’ning, will in earnest so destroy Us his prime creatures, dignify'd so high, Set over all his works; which in our fall, For us created, needs with us inust fall, Dependent made: so God shall uncreate, Be frustrate, do, undo, and labour lose : Not well conceiv'd of God, who through his pow'r Creation could repeat, yet would be loath Us to abolish, lest the adversary Triumph, and say, Fickle their state whom God Most favours; who can please him long? Me first He ruin'd, now mankind : whom will he next? Matter of scorn, not to be giv’n the foe. However, I with thee have fix'd my lot, Certain to undergo like doom: if death Consort with thee, death is to me as life; So forcible within my heart I feel The bond of nature draw me to my own, My own in thee, for what thou art is mine; Our state cannot be sever'd, we are one. One flesh; to lose thee were to lose myself.
So Adam; and thus Eve to him reply'd : O glorious trial of exceeding love, Illustrious evidence, example high! Engaging me to emulate, but short of thy perfection, how shall I attain, Adam? from whose dear side I boast me sprung, And gladly of our union hear thee speak, One heart, one soul in both; whereof good proof This day affords, declaring thee resolv'd, Rather than death, or ought than death more dread, Shall separate us, link'd in love so dear, To undergo with me one guilt, one crime, fany be, of tasting this fair fruit, Whose virtue, (for of good still good proceeds,