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John Keats

To Solitude

21 September 2007
Vol. 7, No. 3
poetry, classic, sonnet, rhyme

O solitude! If I must with thee dwell,

   Let it not be among the jumbled heap

   Of murky buildings;—climb with me the steep,

Nature's Observatory

Ode on Melancholy

20 July 2006
Vol. 6, No. 2
poetry, classic

No, no, go not to Lethe, neither twist

  Wolfs-bane, tight-rooted, for its poisonous wine;

Nor suffer thy pale forehead to be kiss'd

  By nightshade, ruby grape of Proserpine…

Ode to Pysche

19 July 2006
Vol. 6, No. 2
poetry, classic

O Goddess! hear these tuneless numbers, wrung

  By sweet enforcement and remembrance dear,

And pardon that thy secrets should be sung

  Even into thine own soft-conched ear…

When I have fears that I may cease to be

When I have fears that I may cease to be

Before my pen has glean'd my teeming brain,

Before high-pilèd books, in charact'ry

Hold like rich garners the full-ripen'd grain…

The Human Seasons

Four Seasons fill the measure of the year;

There are four seasons in the mind of man:—

He has his lusty Spring, when fancy clear

Takes in all beauty with an easy span…

Bright Star! would I were steadfast as thou art—

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…

To Charles Brown on November 30, 1820

here is one thought enough to kill me—I have been well, healthy, alert, &c, walking with her—and now—the knowledge of contrast, feeling for light and shade, all that information (primitive sense) necessary for a poem are great enemies to the recovery of the stomach. There, you rogue, I put you to the torture…

To Richard Woodhouse on October 27, 1818

A Poet is the most unpoetical of any thing in existence; because he has no Identity—he is continually in for—and filling some other Body—The Sun, the Moon, the Sea, and Men and Women who are creatures of impulse are poetical and have about them an unchangeable attribute—the poet has none; no identity—he is certainly the most unpoetical of all of God's Creatures.

To John Taylor on February 27, 1818

…but it is easier to think what Poetry should be than to write it…

To J.H. Reynolds on February 19, 1818

I have an idea that a Man might pass a very pleasant life in this manner—let him on any certain day read a certain Page of full Poesy or distilled Prose and let him wander with it, and muse upon it, and reflect from it, and bring home to it, and prophesy upon it, and dream upon it—untill it becomes stale—but when will it do so? Never…

To Benjamin Bailey on November 22, 1817

I am certain of nothing but of the holiness of the Heart's affections and the truth of the Imagination—What the imagination seizes as Beauty must be truth—whether it existed before or not…

Books by John Keats:

Essential Keats

Check Powell's Books

Selected Letters: John Keats

Check Powell's Books

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