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Preview — The Complete Poems by John Keats
The Complete Poems
Keats's first volume of poems, published in 1817, demonstrated both his belief in the consummate power of poetry and his liberal views. While he was criticized by many for his politics, his immediate circle of friends and family immediately recognized his genius. In his short life he proved to be one of the greatest and most original thinkers of the second generation of Ro...more
If anyone else has a poet to recommend that they can't live without, please do. I would really like to get more into poetry. I just ha ...more
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 lik ...more
Alone and palely loitering?
The sedge has withered from the lake,
And no birds sing.
Oh what can ail thee, knight-at-arms,
So haggard and so woe-begone?
The squirrel's granary is full,
And the harvest's done.
I see a lily on thy brow,
With anguish moist and fever-dew,
And on thy cheeks a fading rose
Fast withereth too.
I met a lady in the meads,
Full beautiful - a faery's child,
Her hair was long, her foot was light,
And her eyes were wild.
I made a garland for her ...more
Keats was the Romantic poet who cared most about art and beauty. He didn't allow himself to get mixed up in religion and politics. But in quiet ways, he did comment on political, religious, aesthetic, and sexual beliefs, sometimes in ways that were less traditional than his poetic style. Above all, he was supremely conscious of beauty in the world, as well as the world's suffering. His 143page poem 'Endymion: A Poetic Romance' wo ...more
Think Of It Not, Sweet One
Think not of it, sweet one, so;—
Give it not a tear;
Sigh thou mayst, and bid it go
Do not lool so sad, sweet one,—
Sad and fadingly;
Shed one drop then,—it is gone—
O ’twas born to die!
Note to the Third Edition
Tables of Dates
--Imitation of Spenser
--'Fill for me a brimming bowl'
--To Lord Byron
--'As from the darkening gloom a silver dove'
--'Can death be sleep, when life is but a dream'
--Written on the Day that Mr Leigh Hunt left Prison
--Ode to Apollo ('In thy western halls of gold')
--Lines Written on 29 May The Anniversary of the Restoration of Charles the 2nd
--To Some Ladies
--On Receiving a Curious She ...more
On the surface, his romantic style, seemed very far removed from my modern sensibi ...more
Keats also had an enduring interest in antiquity and the ancient world. His longer poe ...more
How came ye muffled in so hush a mask?
Was it a silent deep-disguised plot
To steal away, and leave without a task
My idle days? Ripe was the drowsy
The blissful cloud of summer-indolence
Benumb'd my eyes; my pulse grew
less and less;
Pain had no sting, and pleasure's wreath
O, why did ye not melt, and leave
Unhaunted quite of all but -- nothing-
(from Ode on Indolence)
I'm not often one for reading an author's letters, but these are priceless. Most were penned between 1817-1819, when Keats was traveling the Scottish Highlands, nursing a mysterious sore throat, and falling in love. They become less frequent in 1820 when consumption strikes. By 1821 he is already gone at 25, and suddenly we feel lucky to have them.
Hyperion is one of my all-time favorites, ten pages or so? One ...more
Of course, I don't agree when Keats throws shade on Byron's talent: "You ...more
When this fall I stumbled across a gorgeous hardcover volume of Keats’s collected poems from 1895 going for a pittance in a used bookstore, I took that as my sign from t ...more
it's true, his writing is exquisite. the beauty of the poetry can't be denied. it is the substance i struggle with. keats started writing and was published for only three short years before his death at 26 years. from what i understand, he spent most of his life rather sheltered, and there is no record of any romantic interests, or close fr ...more
in an Oscar-nominated film, Keats and His Nightingale, originally to be titled Blind Date, but another by that title just edged us out. As a bird-whistler, I also acted the nightingale--I played him more as a Woodthrush (see R Frost's "Come In" on a Wood Thrush). In my companion essay to the film, I argued that that ode has a most unpromising start: Keats is high ("or emptied some dull o ...more
So after falling in love with Keats, I had t ...more
It is enjoyable to rea ...more
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Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know”
Bright star, would I were steadfast as thou art—
Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night
And watching, with eternal lids apart,
Like nature's patient, sleepless Eremite,
The moving waters at their priestlike task
Of pure ablution round earth's human shores,
Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask
Of snow upon the mountains and the moors—
No—yet still stedfast, still unchangeable,
Pillow'd upon my fair love's ripening breast,
To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,
Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,
Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,
And so live ever—or else swoon to death.”