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Keats had great influence on other Romantic poets. All of his 150 poems were written in a two-year period—along with hundreds of letters—the most intensive creative surge in the history of poetry. He was 25 years old when he died, clearly a genius lost.

 

 

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 like stout Cortez when with eagle eyes
He star'd at the Pacific--and all his men
Look'd at each other with a wild surmise--

Silent, upon a peak in Darien.

 

Ah, what can ail thee, wretched wight,
    Alone and palely loitering;
The sedge is wither'd from the lake,
    And no birds sing.

Ah, what can ail thee, wretched wight,
    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 cheek 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 set her on my pacing steed,
    And nothing else saw all day long;
For sideways would she lean, and sing
    A faery's song.

I made a garland for her head,
    And bracelets too, and fragrant zone;
She look'd at me as she did love,
   And made sweet moan.

She found me roots of relish sweet,
    And honey wild, and manna dew;
And sure in language strange she said,
    I love thee true.

She took me to her elfin grot,
    And there she gaz'd and sighed deep,
And there I shut her wild sad eyes--
    So kiss'd to sleep.

And there we slumber'd on the moss,
  And there I dream'd, ah woe betide,
The latest dream I ever dream'd
    On the cold hill side.

I saw pale kings, and princes too,
    Pale warriors, death-pale were they all;
Who cry'd--"La belle Dame sans merci
    Hath thee in thrall!"

I saw their starv'd lips in the gloam
    With horrid warning gaped wide,
And I awoke, and found me here
  On the cold hill side.

And this is why I sojourn here
    Alone and palely loitering,
Though the sedge is wither'd from the lake,
    And no birds sing.

 

I go among the Fields and catch a glimpse of a Stoat or a fieldmouse

hurrying along---to what? The creature hath a purpose and its eyes are

bright with it. I go amongst the buildings of a city and I see a Man

hurrying along---to what? The Creature has a purpose and his eyes are

bright with it. . . . .

 

This is the very thing in which consists poetry . . . .

 

But then, as Wordsworth says, “we have all one human heart”---there

Is an electric fire in human nature tending to purify---so that among

these human creatures there is continually some birth of new heroism.

The pity is that we must wonder at it: as we should at finding a pearl n

Rubbish. . . .

What I heard a little time ago, Taylor observe with respect to Socrates

may be said of Jesus----That he was so great a man that though he

transmitted no writing of his own to posterity, we have his Mind and his

sayings and his greatness handed to us by others. It is to be lamented

that the history of the latter was written and revised by Men interested

in the pious frauds of Religion. Yet through all t his I see his splendor . . .

 

I am however young writing at random---straining at particles of light

In the midst of a great darkness---without knowing the hearing of any

One assertion of any one opinion. Yet may I not in this be free from sin?

May there not be superior beings amused with any graceful, though

Instinctive attitude my mind may fall into, as I am entertained with the

Alertness of a Stout or the anxiety of a Deer?

 

This is the very thing in which consists poetry. .

 

Where's the Poet? show him! show him,
Muses nine! that I may know him.
'Tis the man who with a man
Is an equal, be he King,
Or poorest of the beggar-clan
Or any other wonderous thing
A man may be 'twixt ape and Plato;
'Tis the man who with a bird,
Wren or Eagle, finds his way to
All its instincts; he hath heard
The Lion's roaring, and can tell
What his horny throat expresseth,
And to him the Tiger's yell
Come articulate and presseth
Or his ear like mother-tongue.

 

 

 

 

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