Ode to a Grecian Urn by John Keats

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“ Forever warm and still to be enjoyed; Forever panting and forever young….” These words from the poem, Ode to a Grecian Urn was written by John Keats, an English poet of the nineteenth century. This sentence expresses the romance and love of life that John Keats represented. Keats lived during the romantic period, which was a time that focused on the individual, emotions and nature. Although Keats died very young, during his short life he wrote many poems, particularly odes. An ode is a type of poem that can be about an object; a person or anything that one feels extremely passionate about. In Ode to a Grecian Urn, Keats addresses an inanimate object, an urn that has no life, but speaks of it using imagery of energy such as “warm,” “panting,” and “young.” In just one sentence he brings the urn to life praising it as “forever young.” Keats had a difficult life filled with much death. Nevertheless he incorporated both his life experience and his romantic visions in his work. Ode to a Grecian Urn is one example of Keats’ poems that displays all of the paradox’s that can be seen in each of his works.

John Keats was born October 31, 1795 and died on February 23, 1821 at the age of twenty-five. He had one sister and three brothers one of who died as an infant. He had a difficult life surrounded by constant death. His father who worked at a livery stable died in 1804, when John was just nine years old. Six years later, when John was fifteen years old, his mother died of tuberculosis. After the death of his parents John’s grandmother hoped that he would enter the medical profession to find financial security. Keats became an apprentice at Guy’s hospital in London. Before completing his apprenticeship, Keats left and devoted himself o...

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...ybe the message Keats leaves behind is that in every true creation there is an element of beauty.

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