Keats To Sleep Analysis Essay

Keats repeatedly uses imagery from the harvest -- "glean'd" (2), "garners" and "full-ripen'd grain" (4) -- to describe the thoughts emerging from his "teeming brain" (2).

The phrases "high-piled" and "rich" (3-4) suggest abundance.

Again, Keats sets forward a paradox: he is both the field of grain and the harvester of this grain.

In the next lines (5-8), he describes the poet's work: to grasp "high cloudy symbols" (6) in natural phenomena, and use a "magic hand" (8) to transform them into poetry.

Or he could drink from the Hippocrene fountain, which was dear to the ancient Greek muses and was thought to give poetic inspiration.

He wishes, above all, to forget mortal life, in which "youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies" (26).Keats' narration goes on to express Keats' frequent wish to live in a realm of Platonic perfection -- this time, of Poesy (poetry).In this poetic world, which the nightingale occupies, the moon shines bright.Ultimately, as in "Ode on a Grecian Urn" and other poems, Keats cannot sustain his flight of fancy.He is called back to his "sole" (that is, physical) self (72).He says that even the Biblical figure, Ruth, may have heard it during her exile.The nightingale's song is also thought to open treasure chests on "faery" (70) seas.Analysis of "When I have fears that I may cease to be": Keats' fear of death, here, is nuanced: it is not just mortality taken broadly, but specifically the chance that he will not have produced enough in his short span of life to be "satisfied," that he fears.However, the closing lines suggest that, while mortality is the enemy of artistic production, it also somehow frees the artist from worry.He compares the poetry that he will have written to harvested grain.He also states that when he has these fears, he retreats to "the shore/ Of the wide world" (12-13) and thinks, until his ideas of "love and fame to nothingness do sink" (14).


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