A SEVENTEENTH CENTURY SOAP OPERA

by Robin Boothroyd


Following on from ‘
Airline Specific Terms and Conditions‘, my found poem cut from the small print on cheap airlines’ websites, here’s one composed of the customer reviews of Paradise Lost on amazon.co.uk.

***

‘A Seventeenth Century Soap Opera’

It seems it’s not fashionable to read poetry these days
Part of the surprise is that it is not a linear narrative
The sense does largely follow the sound.

Taking classical epic as his model
With his great rolling sentences and complex diction
Milton sits comfortably on my shelf.
There’s no doubt that he gets all the good lines.

The text has been partially modernized
Clearly printed and thoghtfully [sic] designed
Without the plethora of tiresome footnotes.
I simply could not recommend this more highly.
The perfect book to cuddle up with.

***

Amazon reviews have been a hot topic in recent weeks because, it has emerged, certain authors have been giving themselves stonking online write-ups in a bid increase sales. I doubt that Milton engaged in any so-called ‘sock puppetry’, but you never know. I mean, if Pope did

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