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lectual companionship, more delightful from what they recall, than for what they are—more interesting for what they suggest, than for what they were ever meant to be.
Where's the Poet? show him ! show him!
And what is love? It is a doll dress'd up
FRAGMENT OF THE “CASTLE BUILDER.”
To-night I'll have my friar-let me think About my room-I'll have it in the pink; It should be rich and sombre, and the moon, Just in its mid-life in the midst of June, Should look thro’ four large windows and display Clear, but for gold-fish vases in the way, Their glassy diamonding on 'Turkish floor; The tapers keep aside, an hour and more, To see what else the moon alone can show; While the night-breeze doth softly let us know My terrace is well bower'd with oranges. Upon the floor the dullest spirit sees A guitar-ribband and a lady's glove Beside a crumple-leaved tale of love ; A tambour-frame, with Venus sleeping there, All finished but some ringlets of her hair ; A viol, bow-strings torn, cross-wise upon A glorious folio of Anacreon ; A skull upon a mat of roses lying, Ink'd purple with a song concerning dying ; An hour-glass on the turn, amid the trails Of passion-flower ;-just in time there sails A cloud across the moon-the lights bring in ! And see what more my phantasy can win. It is a gorgeous room, but somewhat sad; The draperies are so, as tho' they had Been made for Cleopatra's winding sheet ; And opposite the stedfast eye doth ineet A spacious looking-glass, upon whose face, In letters raven-sombre, you may trace, Old “ Mene, Mene, Tekel Upharsin." Greek busts and statuary have ever been Held, by the finest spirits, fitter far Than vase grotesque and Siamesian jar; Therefore 'tis sure a want of attic taste That I should rather love a gothic waste Of eyesight on cinque-colored potter's clay,
Than on the marble fairness of old Greece. To My table-coverlits of Jason's fleece
And black Numidian sheep wool should be wrought,
“ Under the flag
Welcome joy, and welcome sorrow,
Lethe's weed, and Herme's feather ; Come to-day, and come to-morrow,
I do love you both together!
I love to mark sad faces in fair weather ;
Fair and foul I love together:
Moses bright, and muses pale,
A singular instance of Keats's delicate perception occurred in the composition of the “ Ode on Melancholy.” In the original manuscript, he had intended to represent the vulgar connection of Melancholy with gloom and horror, in contrast with the emotion that incites to,
glut thy sorrow on a morning rose, Or on the rainbow of the salt sand-wave, Or on the wealth of globed peonies ;"
and which essentially
* lives in Beauty-Beauty that must die, And Joy, whose hand is ever at his lips Bidding adien."
The first stanza, therefore, was the following: as grim a picture as Blake or Fuseli could have dreamed and painted :
* Though you should build a bark of dead men's bones,
And rear a phantom gibbet for a mast,
ut no sooner was this written, than the poet became conscious
at the coarseness of the contrast would destroy the general effect fluxurious tenderness which it was the object of the poem to roduce, and he confined the gross notion of melancholy to less iolent images, and let the ode at once begin,
No, no! go not to Lethe, neither twist
The “Eve of St. Agnes” was begun on a visit in Hampshire, at the commencement of this year, and finished on his return to Hampstead. It is written still under Spenserian influences, but with a striking improvement in form, both of diction and versification; the story is easily conducted, and the details picturesque in the highest degree, without the intricate designing of the earlier poems. Lord Jeffrey remarks: “The glory and charm of the poem is the description of the fair maiden's antique chamber and of all that passes in that sweet and angel-guarded sanctuary, eve. ry part of which is touched with colors at once rich and delicate, and the whole chastened and harmonized in the midst of its gor. geous distinctness by a pervading grace and purity, that indicate not less clearly the exaltation, than the refinement of the author's fancy."
The greater part of this summer (1819] was passed at Shanklin, in the Isle of Wight, in company with Mr. Brown, who ear. nestly encouraged the full development of the genius of his friend. A combination of intellectual effort was here attempted which could hardly have been expected to be very successful. They were to write a play between them—Brown to supply the fable, characters, and dramatic conduct-Keats, the diction and the verse. The two composers sat at a table, and as Mr. Brown sketched out the incidents of each scene, Keats translated them into his rich and ready language. As a literary diversion, this process