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Sonnet Xi. On First Looking Into Chapman's Homer

Rating: 2.6
Much have I travell'd in the realms of gold,
And many goodly states and kingdoms seen;
Round many western islands have I been
Which bards in fealty to Apollo hold.
Oft of one wide expanse had I been told
That deep-brow'd Homer ruled as his demesne;
Yet did I never breathe its pure serene
Till I heard Chapman speak out loud and bold:
Then felt I like some watcher of the skies
When a new planet swims into his ken;
Or like stout Cortez when with eagle eyes
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COMMENTS
Michael Walker 19 September 2019
One of the first sonnets I learned. It has everything, imagery 'realms of gold', allusion to Homer and the English translation by Chapman, allusion to Cortez seeing the Pacific Ocean for the first time, 'Silent, upon a peak in Darien'. This sonnet, especially the ending, takes me into another world.
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