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"Paradise Lost". In addition to its imaginative use of language, the poem features a powerful and sympathetic portrait of Lucifer, the rebel angel who frequently outshines his moral superiors. With Milton's deft use of irony, the devil makes evil appear good, just as satanic practices may seem attractive at first glance. "Paradise Lost" has exercised enormous influence on generations of artists and their works, ranging from the Romantic poets William Blake and Percy Bysshe Shelley to Joseph Haydn's oratorio "The Creation" and J. R. R. Tolkien's "The Lord of the Rings".