I have for you this evening a poem that will make up for the lack thereof in the past few weeks.
“When I Have Fears” is a poem by John Keats (1795-1821)- an English Romantic poet of the early 19th century. I know that I do not typically do two consecutive poems by the same author, but I could not resist. John Keats has become a favorite of mine.
When I Have Fears
When I have fears that I may cease to be
Before my pen has gleaned my teeming brain,
Before high-pilèd books, in charactery,
Hold like rich garners the full ripened grain;
When I behold, upon the night’s starred 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.
I cannot tell you exactly what this poem is saying; rather, I do not wish to. I want you to discover its meaning for yourself. What do these words speak to you?
It is a poem with a soul. One so full of raw honesty and the cry of Keats’ heart. It is a work of beauty.