This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Ode To A Nightingale, Ode On A Grecian Urn, And Ode To Autumn

1518 words - 6 pages

Ode to a Nightingale, Ode on a Grecian Urn, and Ode to Autumn

The casual reader of John Keats' poetry would most certainly be impressed by the exquisite and abundant detail of it's verse, the perpetual freshness of it's phrase and the extraordinarily rich sensory images scattered throughout it's lines. But, without a deeper, more intense reading of his poems as mere parts of a larger whole, the reader may miss specific themes and ideals which are not as readily apparent as are the obvious stylistic hallmarks. Through Keats' eyes, the world is a place full of idealistic beauty, both artistic and natural, who's inherent immortality, is to him a constant reminder of that man is irrevocably subject to decay and death. This theme is one which dominates a large portion of his late poetry and is most readily apparent in three of his most famous Odes: To a Nightingale, To Autumn and on a Grecian Urn. In the Ode to a Nightingale, it is the ideal beauty of the Nightingale's song - as permanent as nature itself - in the Ode on a Grecian Urn, it is the perfection of beauty as art transfixed and transfigured forever in the Grecian Urn - and in the Ode to Autumn it is the exquisiteness of the season idealised and immortalised as part of the natural cycle - which symbolise eternal and idealistic images of profound beauty.

In Ode to a Nightingale, Keats uses the central symbol of a bird to exemplify the perfect beauty in nature. The nightingale sings to the poet's senses whose ardour for it's song makes the bird eternal and thus reminds him of how his own mortality separates him from this beauty. The poem begins: "My heart aches, and a drowsey numbness pains" (Norton 1845). In this first line Keats introduces his own immortality with the aching heart a machine of flesh with a fixed number of life-giving beats. He also employs a common poetic device to indicate a visionary activity is about to follow with the admission to a state of "drowsey numbness". In this case, the visionary action is the poet slowly lapsing into the nightingale's world, opening his senses to the true nature of the bird while other "men sit and hear each other groan" (Norton 1845). This state of semiconsciousness allows for his understanding that, although it is mid-May,
the bird "singest of summer in full-throated ease" (Norton 1845). The nightingale, whose song so perfectly embodies a particular season that the poet is unable to be mistaken about it's meaning, expresses the beauty of nature in a way which man is incapable. The poet is also seeing the bird as timeless, for the summer exists within the nightingale regardless of it being mid-May. In stanza seven the poet reveals the nightingale for what it truly is: a symbol nature's immortal beauty. The bird has now entirely escaped the physical limitations of the poet's world where all is subject to death and decay, for it "wast not born for death", and is an "immortal bird" living in an imaginary realm....

Find Another Essay On Ode to a Nightingale, Ode on a Grecian Urn, and Ode to Autumn

Ode on a Grecian Urn Essay

1880 words - 8 pages some short writing in magazines and reviews, he hit genius. “It was during the year 1819 that Keats’ greatest poetry was written—Lamia, The Eve of St. Agnes, the great odes: Ode on Indolence, Ode on a Grecian Urn, Ode to Psyche, Ode to a Nightingale, Ode on Melancholy, and To Autumn, and the two versions of Hyperion. The poetry, composed under the strain of illness and his growing love for Brawne, is an astonishing body of work, marked by careful

Ode on a Grecian Urn Essay

1516 words - 6 pages of each stanza roughly define the subject of the stanza, and the last six roughly explicate or develop it. (As in other odes, this is only a general rule, true of some stanzas more than others; stanzas such as the fifth do not connect rhyme scheme and thematic structure closely at all.) Themes If the Ode to a Nightingale portrays Keats's speaker's engagement with the fluid expressiveness of music, the Ode on a Grecian Urn portrays his attempt to

Ode on A Grecian Urn

586 words - 2 pages tuberculosis and the other emigrate to America. Poverty kept him from marrying the woman he loved. And he achieved lasting fame only after his early death in 1821. Yet grief and hardship never destroyed his passionate commitment to poetry.John Keats wrote "Ode on a Grecian Urn" in 1819. This ode is based on a series of paradoxs and opposites on the discrepancy between the urn with its frozen images and the dynamic life portrayed on the urn, the

Ode on a Grecian Urn

2218 words - 9 pages poets. He is often called as the Poet of Beauty, because of his very passionate and emotional writing style. The detailed and neat images are very typical of his work, it helps the reader to get more involved in the world of the poem. He wrote a few other odes, but Ode on a Grecian Urn is probably his most famous one. The title itself is to express and orientate the reader about the situation, since the word ''urn'' is never articulated. The

Ode to a Nightingale

1341 words - 5 pages relate to - the desire to escape into something or somewhere more desirable.Works CitedCooper, J.J. Brewer's Book of Myth and Legend. Oxford: Helicon Publishing, 1993.Keats, John. "Ode to a Nightingale." Retrieved from: http://www.bartleby.com/126/40.html on June 5th 2004Inglis, Frank. Keats (Literture in prespectives). Evan bros. Publishing, 1966 (pp127-130)

Ode To A Nightingale

751 words - 3 pages Ode To A Nightingale Choose a poem which you think could be described as a “quiet” or “reflective” poem. Show how the poet has achieved this effect and discuss to what extent you find it a suitable way of dealing with the subject matter in the poem. In your answer you must refer closely to the text and to at least two of mood; theme; sound; imagery; rhythm or any other appropriate feature. “Ode To A Nightingale” by John Keats is

Ode To A Nightingale

637 words - 3 pages Ode to a Nightingale In Ode to a Nightingale, John Keats, the author and narrator, used descript terminology to express the deep-rooted pain he was suffering during his battle with tuberculosis. This poem has eight paragraphs or verses of ten lines each and doesn’t follow any specific rhyme scheme. In the first paragraph, Keats gave away the mood of the whole poem with his metaphors for his emotional and physical sufferings, for example: My

"Ode to a Nightingale" and "To Autumn" by John Keats

1614 words - 6 pages : imagination and creativity, the beauty of nature, magical creatures or experience, and the true sufferings of human life. "Ode to a Nightingale" and "To Autumn" are two well known odes by Keats. They both reflect some of the concerns in its context."Ode to a Nightingale" explores the sufferings of mortal life and ways of escape including alcohol, imagination and poetry, and death. The nightingale represents transcendence to a better world and its song

Poetry Analysis: "Ode On a Grecian Urn"

1245 words - 5 pages ,” - that is all Ye know on earth, and all ye need to know” (lines 49-50). “Ode on a Grecian Urn” uses many paradoxes that propose that discloses some sort of Platonic truth to man. The urn’s truth lies in its beauty. Moreover, when “famously judged by T.S. Eliot as “a serious blemish on a beautiful poem”, have generated at least as much critical dissension as the more obviously unresolved conclusion of “Ode to a Nightingale”. (O’Rourke, 46) I

Ode On A Grecian Urn - Critical Analysis

705 words - 3 pages “More happy love! more happy, happy love!” (Keats, line 25). When one reads lines such as this, one cannot help but think that the poet must have been very, very happy, and that, in fact, the tone of the poem is light and filled with joy. However, this is not the case in John Keats’s poem, Ode on a Grecian Urn. At first glance, the tone of the poem seems light and flowery. However, when one looks deeper into the poem to find its underlying

An Ode to a Grecian Urn by John Keats

842 words - 3 pages other qualities. "In fact, the Ode to a Grecian Urn may deserve to rank first in the group [of Odes] if viewed in something approaching its true complexity and human wisdom" (56-57). In the closing line, "beauty is truth, truth beauty (49), it summarizes the whole intellectual content of the poem. The beauty of the urn has preserved life of Greece and passed it on in truth. Keats inspiration of Greek art has been interbred with life. The poem is a hybrid of life and Greek art.

Similar Essays

John Keat's "Ode To A Nightingale", "Ode To Autumn" And "Ode On A Grecian Urn"

1469 words - 6 pages hallmarks. Through Keats' eyes, the world is a place full of idealistic beauty, both artistic and natural, who's inherent immortality, is to him a constant reminder of that man is irrevocably subject to decay and death. This theme is one which dominates a large portion of his late poetry and is most readily apparent in three of his most famous Odes: To a Nightingale, To Autumn and on a Grecian Urn. In the Ode to a Nightingale, it is the ideal beauty of

Keats, Ode On A Grecian Urn And Ode To Autumn

1737 words - 7 pages lyric poems were written between March and September 1819 and Keats died in 1821.In Ode To A Nightingale, Keats turned to the song of a bird in his quest for perfection, in Ode On A Grecian Urn he has turned to art. Instead of identifying with the fluid expressiveness of music the speaker attempts to engage with the static immobility of sculpture. This is done by examining the pictures on the urn and by the speaker describing them and interpreting

John Keats' Ode On A Grecian Urn And Ode To A Nightingale

1535 words - 6 pages John Keats' Ode on a Grecian Urn and Ode to a Nightingale John Keats, in "Ode on a Grecian Urn" and "Ode to a Nightingale" attempts to connect with two objects of immortality to escape from the rigors of human life. In "Ode to a Nightingale", Keats attempts to connect with a bird's song because the music knows nothing of aging and mortality. Keats has the same motivation in "Ode on a Grecian Urn" while trying to

Ode On A Grecian Urn Essay 856 Words

856 words - 3 pages Ode on a Grecian UrnJohn Keats brilliantly uses poetic form and descriptive language in an attempt to evoke interest in an essentially uninteresting subject, as well as support a hidden agenda, with his poem, "Ode on a Grecian Urn". It is a delightfully reflective, lyrical poem, which contemplates the beauty of still art with the movement of life. By looking at the intricate poetic language Keats chooses for this ode we are allowed access to the