Where did thought go?

The life of John Keats the man: his family, his friends, and his contemporaries.

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Where did thought go?

Postby MonroeDoctrine » Sat Jul 03, 2004 5:38 am

Keats' was fighting the Hobbsean poets that didn't like metaphor. Silly poets that had the Augustian style of poetry which meant simple logical deduction. Anyone coming up with new ideas outside the logical deduction has been attacked!

Let us get our citicens outside of the logical deduction:

Shelly:

Music, when soft voices die
vibrates in the memory.
Odours, when sweet Violets sicken
live within the sense they quicken.

Rose leaves, when the rose is dead,
are heaped for thy beloved's bed;
and so thy thoughts when thou art gone,
love itself shall slumber on.
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Where did this come from?

Postby Saturn » Sat Jul 03, 2004 9:18 pm

I don't understand why you feel the need to defend Keats from some imagined attack. I haven't read anyone attacking him on here since that idiot keatssucks a few weeks back.

Chill out man, don't worry so much - I think I can safely say we all admire and respect Keats here.

P.S. Who are the 'Hobbsean poets that didn't like metaphor'?

Thought is still alive, just struck dumb by impotence.
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Who are the Hobbesean Poets?

Postby MonroeDoctrine » Sun Jul 04, 2004 3:16 am

Here is a Hobbesean poet I have no respect for: Lord Byron.


Here's another one: William Davenant. And actually I believe Alexander Pope destroyed poetry, although I don't know much about his political life, I can assert his style was a disaster for mankind.
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What a load of nonsense

Postby Saturn » Mon Jul 05, 2004 9:25 am

Don't be so melodramatic!

Never have I read such bombastic generalisations on something which you clearly have no idea about.

Do me a favour!
Alexander Pope destroyed poetry?? His style a disaster for mankind?? As they say where I come from - wise up!!

Sure, I have some reservations myself about the whole 'Augustan' style of poetry of the eighteeenth century, (too much reason and intellect, and not enough of the heart) but no serious poetry lover can deny the quality of Pope's work - check out The Rape of the Lock and The Duncaid for two of the greatest satires in the English Language - witty, urbane and sophisticated.

Politically, Pope was somewhat marginalised (though he still enjoyed some patronage) due to his Catholicism - a very subersive and dangerous position after the so-called 'Glorious Revolution' of 1688.

His life was a overall a tragic one as he suffered from a growth deformity which robbed from him the chance of a normal family life, so he devoted his life to literature, not only his own work, but he also edited Shakespeare and was a celebrated gardener (the famous Twickenham garden and grotto).

A real example of triumph over adversary - nothing is more noble than the artist overcoming all obstacles to serve the Muses.

Here's some Pope quotes to refute your accusations:

“In poets as true genius is but rare,
True taste as seldom is the critics share;
Both must alike from Heaven derive their light,
These born to judge, as well as those to write.
Let such teach others who themselves excel,
And censure freely who have written well.
Authors are partial to their wit, ‘tis true,
But are not critics to their judgement too?

“Music resembles poetry, in each
Are nameless graces which no methods teach,
And which a master-hand alone can reach.”

“A little learning is a dangerous thing;
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring:
There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain,
And drinking largely sobers us again.”

“Such shameless bards we have, and yet ‘tis true,
There are as mad, abandoned critics too.
The bookful blockhead, ignorantly read,
With loads of learned lumber in his head,
With his own tongue still edifies his ears,
And always listening to himself appears.”

Think before you engage your ignorant opinions. No man should have an opinion on something he knows nothing about - it is simply impossible to judge that of which you have no knowledge.
Last edited by Saturn on Tue Jul 06, 2004 10:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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To My Dear Friend Stephen!

Postby MonroeDoctrine » Tue Jul 06, 2004 2:07 am

You're reactionary post did amuse me! However, let me show you a Keats poem that refutes Pope's Ode on Solitude:


O Solitude! if I must with thee dwell,
Let it not be among the jumbled heap
Of murky buildings: climb with me the steep,—
Nature's observatory—whence the dell,
In flowery slopes, its river's crystal swell,
May seem a span; let me thy vigils keep
'Mongst boughs pavilioned, where the deer's swift leap
Startles the wild bee from the foxglove bell.
But though I'll gladly trace these scenes with thee,
Yet the sweet converse of an innocent mind,
Whose words are images of thoughts refined,
Is my soul's pleasure; and it sure must be
Almost the highest bliss of human-kind,
When to thy haunts two kindred spirits flee.


Instead of being an Aristotilean like Alexander Pope, Keats has built up a beautiful irony, and in fact he demonstrates love for humanity. Pope's hideous Ode on Solitude has no irony! His poem does absolutely nothing to improve our humanity. His poem couldn't improve our civilization.

Alexander Pope was probably a nice guy but the fact that he would simplify Homer's Iliad, and simplify Shakespeare demonstrates his lack of respect for real poets. Reductionism in poetry is satanic, it also kills poetry. Shakespeare was not meant to be changed it was meant to be read as it is. Could you imagine someone rewriting The Revolt of Islam? It would kill Shelly.
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Postby Saturn » Tue Jul 06, 2004 10:36 am

:? Pope never wrote an Ode on Solitude!!

The quotes I gave are from various poems of his.

As if I had never read Keats Ode to Solitude!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Most authorities agree that Pope's editing of Shakespeare was disastrous, as do I, but it was typical of the editorial fashion of the age. Samuel Johnson also made a similar mistake in tring to edit erroneously the masters works.

Did you know that King Lear was played with an happy ending until the late ninetenth century?
His other plays were similarly cut and distorted until the mid-twentieth century when fidelity to the artists' intentions became a principal concern.

About Shelley's 'Revolt of Islam', it is actually the edited version of 'Laon and Cythna', which was deemed unsuitable for publication due to its incestuous and politically subversive themes. Shelley was actually forced to 'reduce' the poem to see it in print.

Much as I would like to believe that Keats' poems, or any poems have improved 'civilization' (an oxymoron if ever there was one), if you think about it, poetry has often be used for evil purposes.

Much as I love Homer's Iliad, from generals of the ancient world right up to today, this work has inspired more bloodthirsty conquerors than practically any other (aside from 'The Holy Bible').

Here's just a few names: Alexander, Caesar, Augustus, Trajan, Julian, Justinian, Charlemange, Napoleon, the list goes on of tyrants and murderers who have used poetry to inspire murder, rape and pillage to the detriment of humanity.


Even Shakespeare was used in the first and second world wars to inspire 'patriotic' feelings among the troops.

I would love to agree with Shelley that 'Poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the world' but no-one today cares a fig for poesy - most world leaders are career politicians and barristers who are purely interested in their own greed and reputation than the improvement of their people - a far cry from Plato's call for a 'Philosopher King'.

I don't want to manke any enemies on here, all I ask is that you don't dismiss other poets who did not have the advantages of being born in the freer poetical atmosphere of Keats and his peers.

Poets of the era of Pope, Dryden, Gray etc. did not have the inclination to express their deepest feeelings - it just wasn't the done thing.

They all have their own merits - they aren't worse poets because of this, just different - don't be so judgmental.


P.S. don't use the name of 'friend' in such a detrimental way - to me this a sacred word not to be used lightly or in scorn. You may feel able to use this in a jokey way, but I am not so fortunate in this respect, not being so lucky as to actually have any.

PEACE, LOVE AND UNDERSTANDING, MAN!
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Inspiration

Postby MonroeDoctrine » Wed Jul 07, 2004 8:08 pm

Listen my friend, real poetry can only create beautiful souls such as John Keats. Everyone else either misinterpreted poetry or read awful poetry. That's why there is a huge difference between someone who reads John Keats, and someone who reads an abundance of Satanic-Ganster rap.
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Postby Wickers_Poet » Mon Feb 14, 2005 3:44 am

I'm afraid Pope did pen an ode on solitude very early in life. It appears in all good editions of his works.
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Postby Becky » Mon Feb 14, 2005 10:41 am

Real poetry can only create beautiful souls? I wouldn't limit poetry, or beauty, or the soul, so much.
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Postby Saturn » Mon Feb 14, 2005 10:51 am

Wickers_Poet wrote:I'm afraid Pope did pen an ode on solitude very early in life. It appears in all good editions of his works.



Whoops, sorry, I've never read that :roll:

Dooohhh :(
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Postby Steen » Sat Mar 19, 2005 1:01 am

Well hang on, if we all agree that Keats is good how can be have an effective debate. I think we should listen to the cristiums of Keats and see if they are valid. Of course Keats was good, but we must accept he was raw talent, bearly in his 20's so of course some of it won't be as good. And that is the piont of studing the work of a person, they have good days and bad days...so don't dimiss attacks against Keats, rather look for counter-arguments to defend your beliefs.
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Postby lupinjr » Wed Aug 31, 2005 9:04 am

I absolutely agree with monroe that Pope is rotten. The neo classical movement stiffled english literature for over a century. No great classic in poetry was written during that age that would stand the test of time. The poem of Pope's that has been posted just goes to show this. What mundane writing, is the theme even something to write poetry about? Poetics and criticism. The poem deals with factual things much better expressed in an essay or one of Pope's own pamphlets. The only lines approaching beauty in the poem are Music resembles poetry, in each
Are nameless graces which no methods teach,
and
Drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring:
There shallow draughts intoxicate the brain

None of the other lines recall any images to the mind that are sublime ,neither do they embody any truth. As for Pope's great satires they are just that- satires. Poetry aimed at social satire. How limited in scope, is there anything universal or timeless in such a work. It is the expression of a mind and an imagination that never learned to stray beyond the mundane trappings of everyday life. Pope never tasted of the sublime, he never could.
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