Results 1 to 14 of 14

Thread: Struggling to enjoy Keats

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    35

    Question Struggling to enjoy Keats

    To some it may sound astounding, and I can understand that, but I am really struggling to get into Keats. I can see he was very clever - his poems leave many different possible interpretations, but I just don't really enjoy them. Maybe it's because he is so morose, and I can't really tap into that. Any reccomendations for poems that will get me to love Keats? I've already read Lamia, Grecian Urn, Eve of St. Agnes and On the Sea. I have to admit, Ode on a Grecian Urn was good, but I was slightly thrown off by Lamia which is a bit heavy (don't get me wrong, I'm not a lightweight, but it was just a bit of a straight narrative.)

    Anyone completely and vehemently disagree with me?

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Scotland
    Posts
    4
    I like "O Solitude" when he says "the deer's swift leap/startles the wild bee from the foxglove bell." Pure Romantic. Its nice and short also, unlike a lot of other Romantic poems, that go on for pages and pages and clearly did not have the shortened attention span of the modern intellectual on the move in mind.
    Ode To Autumn also. My English teacher in second year used to say she imagined the guy from the Mr Kipling adverts reading it. Don't know if that means anything to you.

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Belo Horizonte- Brasil
    Posts
    3,279
    The top of Keats art are his odes. Grecian Urn, Melancholy, Psyche and Nighitingale.
    Some of his short poems (Bright Star, If by Dull rhymes English must be chained, Give me woman, wine, and snuff) and others such La Belle Dame sans Mercy, maybe.
    Long poems like Lamia, Hyperion, etc are his most irregular poems because keats poetry is all movemment using some invisible wings.

    Anyways, it is absolutelly normal to not like a great writer, such is life. You do not have "to" like him.

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    2,429
    Blog Entries
    4
    This Keat's poem is amazing.

    When I have fears that I may cease to be
    Before my pen has glean'd my teeming brain,
    Before high-piled books, in charactery,
    Hold like rich garners the full ripen'd grain;
    When I behold, upon the night's starr'd face,
    Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,
    And think that I may never live to trace
    Their shadows, with the magic hand of chance;
    And when I feel, fair creature of an hour,
    That I shall never look upon thee more,
    Never have relish in the faery power
    Of unreflecting love;--then on the shore
    Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
    Till love and fame to nothingness do sink.

  5. #5
    Registered User WriterAtTheSea's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Somewhere between reality and creativity... Whether East or West, living at the SEA suites me best!
    Posts
    53
    Blog Entries
    47
    Quote Originally Posted by Rosencrantz View Post
    To some it may sound astounding, and I can understand that, but I am really struggling to get into Keats. I can see he was very clever - his poems leave many different possible interpretations, but I just don't really enjoy them. Maybe it's because he is so morose, and I can't really tap into that. Any reccomendations for poems that will get me to love Keats? I've already read Lamia, Grecian Urn, Eve of St. Agnes and On the Sea. I have to admit, Ode on a Grecian Urn was good, but I was slightly thrown off by Lamia which is a bit heavy (don't get me wrong, I'm not a lightweight, but it was just a bit of a straight narrative.)

    Anyone completely and vehemently disagree with me?
    This is an interesting plus for Keats:


    Author Crawford, Alexander Wellington, 1866-1933.
    Title The genius of Keats; an interpretation, by Alexander W. Crawford.
    Publication Information New York, Russell & Russell [1967]

    If nothing else, it will help you see his work from a more positive perspective.

    So, whose poetry do you enjoy? :
    Our passions are not too strong, they are too weak. We are far too easily pleased.

    ~C.S. Lewis





    http://michellerichmond.com/fictionattic/?page_id=9

  6. #6
    truth seeker
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Burbank
    Posts
    20
    Quote Originally Posted by ktd222 View Post
    Of the wide world I stand alone, and think
    Till love and fame to nothingness do sink.[/I]
    Sorry if this sounds unintelligent, but I'm a little unsure what Keats is getting at exactly with the last couple lines of "When I have fears that I may cease to be." I'd be interested to hear how someone else interprets it...is he trying to comfort himself because he will be unable to fulfill all his dreams? Almost as if he wants to push those thoughts of mortality out of his mind?

    any thoughts would be appreciated.


    "Life is full of the comic, and is only majestic in its inner sense"
    -Dostoevsky

  7. #7
    Lover of all things epic
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    138
    I felt exactly the same when I studied Keats; he is certainly difficult and not always enjoyable upon first reading but now i'm looking at his works again i'm seeing something more in them, and beginning to enjoy them more. All I can suggest is that you do some background reading to try and get a better feel for the author and his works, but believe me when I say that there was many a time when the likes of 'Ode on Melancholy' had me wanting to put an end to it all! I read it to my family when we were stuck in a traffic queue as it seemed to fit the moment
    "Haunt me, take any form. Only, do not leave me in this abyss where I cannot find you."

  8. #8
    would it help to know he was an opium addict?
    lol, it worked for me at school
    the poor thing has his TB and all.. but he was a pain killer junkie

    poofy yes he was simply feeling sorry for himself there
    Last edited by stormgirl_blue; 06-26-2007 at 05:56 AM.
    http//www.wordsy.com

  9. #9
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Posts
    2,429
    Blog Entries
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by poofyhead15 View Post
    Sorry if this sounds unintelligent, but I'm a little unsure what Keats is getting at exactly with the last couple lines of "When I have fears that I may cease to be." I'd be interested to hear how someone else interprets it...is he trying to comfort himself because he will be unable to fulfill all his dreams? Almost as if he wants to push those thoughts of mortality out of his mind?

    any thoughts would be appreciated.
    He talks about what we all feel on occasions…that we might run out of time before doing all of what we dreamt up; but obviously for him this fear of dying prematurely revolves around not living long enough to experience love. He compares these thoughts “teeming” in his brain to a field of “ripening grains.” His wish is too see those thoughts mature, and to be able to write about those experiences. The “high-piled books” are like the “ripened grains,” both are symbols of a complete maturation process; in this case the “high-piled books” represent a story told, with a beginning, middle and end…a symbol for thoughts harvested.

    Then he looks up at the “night’s starr’d face” and sees “symbols of a high romance,” which are symbols like the “ripened grain” and “high-piled books,” and he realizes that he’ll never live long enough to write about his own experience in romance. He describes the night as a “starr’d face,” as if the “cloudy symbols of romance” written in the night itself is some publicly, well-known thing. Just as things can be publicly known one hour and be forgotten in the next hour, he sees love much like fame…in that it is something transient, something that will go as quickly out of existence as it did coming into existence; the only thing one is assured of is that everything becomes nothing in the end.

  10. #10
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    2
    I like how the first time that I've read The Eve of St. Agnes I had no clue what was going on in the poem exceot for ALL those descriptions about the room until i read it the second time and found all of the sensual and sneaky action I missed out on the first time around.

    Edit: wow. i didnt look at the age of this thread <_<

  11. #11
    Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    11
    'eve of st agnes' is my favourite... ethereal, flushed, like a throbbing star.......... wow! and obviously 'to autumn'. i don't really like 'when i have fears'...too many personal pronouns.

  12. #12
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    192
    I believe that Keats is one of the poets you must take out of his writings to fully understand. I believe that my own personal enjoyment in him is based on who he was, his beliefs, over his poetry. (Although I greatly love his poetry). And in order to understand such art as his own, you must first try and understand the artist.

  13. #13
    Registered User Jassy Melson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    1,772
    Blog Entries
    1
    This is just my opinion but I think Keats is the greatest English poet. His odes have never been surpassed in the realm of poetry.
    Dostoevsky gives me more than any scientist.

    Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world. - Albert Einstein

  14. #14
    Registered User kelby_lake's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Posts
    3,620
    Quote Originally Posted by Rosencrantz View Post
    To some it may sound astounding, and I can understand that, but I am really struggling to get into Keats. I can see he was very clever - his poems leave many different possible interpretations, but I just don't really enjoy them. Maybe it's because he is so morose, and I can't really tap into that. Any reccomendations for poems that will get me to love Keats? I've already read Lamia, Grecian Urn, Eve of St. Agnes and On the Sea. I have to admit, Ode on a Grecian Urn was good, but I was slightly thrown off by Lamia which is a bit heavy (don't get me wrong, I'm not a lightweight, but it was just a bit of a straight narrative.)

    Anyone completely and vehemently disagree with me?
    I like Ode on a Grecian Urn and Ode to A Nightingale. Maybe watch 'Bright Star' for inspiration:

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0810784/

Similar Threads

  1. Keats
    By Imaginary in forum Keats, John
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 01-10-2007, 06:45 AM
  2. Keats anyone???
    By deesha88 in forum Poems, Poets, and Poetry
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 05-17-2006, 09:42 PM
  3. Enjoy reading?
    By Jamie in forum Great Expectations
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 05-24-2005, 06:07 PM
  4. Endymion by Keats
    By mono in forum Poems, Poets, and Poetry
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 12-12-2004, 02:20 AM
  5. ABOUT JOHN KEATS
    By yorumcu in forum Poems, Poets, and Poetry
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 03-29-2003, 04:39 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •