John Milton Hayes, better known as J. Milton Hayes, was an English actor and poet, best known for his 1911 dramatic monologue The Green Eye of the Yellow God, much parodied by his contemporary Stanley Holloway and later by The Goon Show. He also wrote and performed many other monologues. Curiously little is known about Hayes, save that he was from the north of England and that he knew Alec Waugh when the two were prisoners of war together in Mainz, Germany in 1918. From the fact that he was accommodated alongside Waugh at Mainz, we may assume that Hayes served as an officer in the First World War. In his book My Brother Evelyn and Other Profiles Waugh describes Hayes as 'A North Country man; he was nearly forty; he was brisk, assured, purposeful, with his eye on the main chance. He was the first person I heard analyse success. He gives Hayes's account of the writing of the poem:
There's a one-eyed yellow idol to the north of Khatmandu,
There's a little marble cross below the town,
There's a broken-hearted woman tends the grave of Mad Carew,
And the yellow god forever gazes down.