It’s hard to believe that a poem penned in 1667 or so by a British poet has much impact on the world today, but it does for many. Enter Paradise Lost by John Milton, possibly the most influential poet, ever.
Being someone who loves to read, I surprisingly don’t read a lot of poetry. I tend to over analyze it, oddly enough. Of the poetry I have read, two of them always stand out as favorites Paradise Lost by John Milton and Child Roland The Dark Tower Came by Robert Browning.
Oddly, both are still impacting the world today in different ways. Much of writings of Stephen King have been influenced by the poem Childe Roland to the Dark Tower Came, beyond the Gunslinger series by King even. Roland the Gunslinger is a part of the larger Stephen King universe even if it isn’t immediately recognized as such. However, Roland battles the devil in one of his many forms (think The Walking Dude from The Stand). Furthermore, the world in which Roland lives is the reason creatures like It are possible. The collapse of the Dark Towers in Roland’s world make it easier for things to cross into our world in the King Universe. Therefore, in a way, the poem inspired even It and The Shining two of King’s most famous books.
Milton’s poem Paradise Lost is an even bigger if albeit unseen influence. The Bible is pretty devoid of references to Satan. There are maybe a dozen, give or take, in the book and not once does it describe what Satan looks like. Which is where Paradise Lost comes in.
Our modern understanding of Satan comes from this poem. As does our understanding of what Satan looks like. Even a lot of the deeds and traits we associate with Satan comes from Paradise Lost as again the Bible doesn’t actually say much about him at all. We have an encounter with demons in the Bible, but we understand that this is not Satan just his minions that Jesus exorcises in the Bible.