Photo Essay: Tribute to Keats

Ode to a Nightingale

My heart aches, and a drowsy numbness pains 

My sense, as though of hemlock I had drunk, 

Or emptied some dull opiate to the drains 

One minute past, and Lethe-wards had sunk:

’Tis not through envy of thy happy lot, 

But being too happy in thine happiness,- 

That thou, light-winged Dryad of the trees, 

In some melodious plot 

Of beechen green, and shadows numberless, 

Singest of summer in full-throated ease.

Fade far away, dissolve, and quite forget 
What thou among the leaves hast never known, 

The weariness, the fever, and the fret 

Here, where men sit and hear each other groan; 

Where palsy shakes a few, sad, last gray hairs, 

Where youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies; 

Where but to think is to be full of sorrow 

And leaden-eyed despairs, 

Where Beauty cannot keep her lustrous eyes, 

Or new Love pine at them beyond to-morrow.

Darkling I listen; and, for many a time 

I have been half in love with easeful Death, 

Call’d him soft names in many a mused rhyme, 

To take into the air my quiet breath; 

Now more than ever seems it rich to die, 

To cease upon the midnight with no pain, 

While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad 

In such an ecstasy! 

Still wouldst thou sing, and I have ears in vain – 

To thy high requiem become a sod.

Thou wast not born for death, immortal Bird! 

No hungry generations tread thee down; 

The voice I hear this passing night was heard 

In ancient days by emperor and clown: 

Perhaps the self-same song that found a path 

Through the sad heart of Ruth, when, sick for home, 

She stood in tears amid the alien corn; 

The same that oft-times hath 

Charm’d magic casements, opening on the foam 

Of perilous seas, in faery lands forlorn.

Forlorn! the very word is like a bell 

To toil me back from thee to my sole self! 

Adieu! the fancy cannot cheat so well 

As she is fam’d to do, deceiving elf. 

Adieu! adieu! thy plaintive anthem fades 

Past the near meadows, over the still stream, 

Up the hill-side; and now ’tis buried deep 

In the next valley-glades: 

Was it a vision, or a waking dream? 

Fled is that music: – Do I wake or sleep?

Keats is one of my all time favorite poets. If you enjoy poetry and want to watch an amazing movie about Keats and the love of his life, please check Bright Star. It is one of the most beautiful stories. The movie itself feels like a poem.

Did you enjoy reading this post? Leave me a comment with your thoughts, opinions, questions, or general thoughts about life, poetry, or Keats. I would love to know which is your favorite poem by Keats

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