Analysis Of John Keats 's ' The Star ' Essay

Analysis Of John Keats 's ' The Star ' Essay

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The speaker in this poem is addressing a star, as line one starts with, “BRIGHT star! would I were stedfast as thou art.” He starts off by saying how he wishes he was as "stedfast" as the star. With this information, it is likely that Keats is referring to the North Star as it is unmoving. The speaker’s conversation with the star immediately shifts gears because in lines two through eight he starts to reject qualities of the star 's steadfastness and even suggests all the ways in which he doesn 't want to be like the star. For example, “Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night.” Now it seems he doesn 't like the idea of spending all eternity “watching” the “moving waters” washing the earth’s shores.
The ninth line then shifts gears back to the first line and we start to understand that the speaker does want to be like the star; in the sense that the star doesn 't move, and never changes. This however is not totally correct as the context of these attributes is very different from the stars. The speaker wants to spend all eternity with his head lying on his girlfriend 's breast, “Pillow’d upon my fair love’s ripening breast.” He says that if he can 't spend all eternity like that, he 'd rather “swoon to death.”
Eternity is the main theme of this poem as noted in the third line, “And watching, with eternal lids apart.” The importance of the star is that it is unwavering and forever. However as the poem continues, it becomes clear that the speaker doesn 't just want any eternity, as noted in the second line, “Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night.” Instead, he wants to spend eternity “Pillow’d upon [his] fair love’s ripening breast,” and if this is not possible, he says he would rather “swoon to death,” entering into a diff...


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...ly, and die, “Where youth grows pale, and spectre-thin, and dies.” Line 29 uses personification to describe beauty with her “lustrous eyes,” growing old and dying. Lines 52 and 53 describe death as a creature who is able to be spoken to and the speaker even goes as far as to almost even try to woo this creature, “I have been half in love with easeful Death, Call 'd him soft names in many a mused rhyme.”
The poem is a Horatian ode, named after the Roman poet Horace, with a rhyme scheme of: ABABCDECDE. It has eight separate stanzas of ten lines each, and the meter of each line in the stanza, except for the eighth, is in iambic pentameter. The eighth line is written in iambic trimeter, meaning it only has six syllables per line instead of ten. I believe that Keats keeps the meter pretty regular throughout the poem as most lines do not seem forced for the sake of rhythm.

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