Random Keats Sightings

Events that are related to Keats, lectures, new publications. Also your Photos of Keats-related locations, events etc.

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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Credo Buffa » Fri Feb 26, 2010 6:36 pm

Maureen wrote:I can never sell or get rid of them, even the trashy novels!

I'm absolutely with you! One of my dreams is to someday have a house with a room I can dedicate as a library, so book collecting is a must. I makes think of a moment just this last weekend as my dad was helping me haul boxes out of my old apartment (I'm in the process of moving right now). I handed off one in a pile of many very heavy ones to him and he said, "These are all books?!" Yes, of course they are!

Although I do have to sometimes get rid of the "trashy" ones to make room for the good ones, since that library is still a dream and the reality is that I live in a 450 square foot studio. :P The Time Traveler's Wife is the next to go! :lol:

Maureen wrote:I actually have two volumes of the complete poems - a lovely Victorian bound volume which I take down to look at and admire, and the standard Oxford edition, and 18th birthday present, which is the one I can take anywhere with me and read whenever I want.

What a wonderful thing to have in your collection! Color me green with envy. :)
"Holy Kleenex, Batman! It was right under our nose and we blew it!"
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Maureen » Sat Feb 27, 2010 4:31 pm

I hope you do get a home with that library - when we moved into our current house the thing that sold it for me was that downstairs we have a sitting room, dining room, kitchen - plus an extra room which immediately became our library. There's a bed sofa in there so it can double as a guest room when we have visitors but the walls are lined with shelves with our book collection - I love just going in there and soaking up the titles, picking up a book at random and leafing through it.
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Raphael » Sat Feb 27, 2010 4:44 pm

Maureen wrote:It's sad your dad sold your grandad's books: books are my passion - I can never sell or get rid of them, even the trashy novels! My most prized possessions are the set of Arthur Mee encyclopaedias which were my dad's - we used to pore over them together and mum gave them to me after he died; my Shakespeare; set of Hardy novels and - you've guessed it - Keats' poems. I actually have two volumes of the complete poems - a lovely Victorian bound volume which I take down to look at and admire, and the standard Oxford edition, and 18th birthday present, which is the one I can take anywhere with me and read whenever I want.


Victorian keats volumes?! I am salivating....
p.s I told my Dad off recently about the books lol
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Malia » Thu Apr 08, 2010 3:00 am

I don't know *how* I come across these random Keats sightings, but I found a whole astrology chart on Keats. I'm not a "true believer" in astrology, but it was certainly interesting to read Keats's . . .well. . .reading! I thought some of what they said was spot on--and some was not quite on. But it's a fun "read" if you're interested:

http://www.astrotheme.com/portraits/jT6Zc3Agn55U.htm

I remember back in my undergrad days, I was flipping through a friend's astrology book and the authors listed Keats as a prime example of the typical Scorpio! So, he's been attached to astrology before ;)
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby BrokenLyre » Thu Apr 08, 2010 4:28 am

Interesting Malia. Thanks.

I have a friend of mine here in upstate New York, and he has a British accent. He told me that he was born in London, England in 1937 (I think). He pulled out an old map of London and said he lived on Albany Street. He know the Regency Park area and the Hampstead Heath as well. He used to walk the area as a boy. Then he said he never really heard of John Keats - even though he lived just about 4 to 5 miles from the Heath. Imagine that. He had to meet me here in NY, to learn about Keats. Just a strange thing about life, isn't it?
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Raphael » Thu Apr 08, 2010 4:44 am

That is funny indeed Broken Lyre!

Malia- thanks for that. Interesting, but I find this one very accurate and it gives a glimpse into how things may have turned out if he had not passed at 25. I have italicised the bits especially spookily accurate.One even fits in with what he wrote to Fanny about feeling like he was dissolving...

Personal Portrait.

Sun in Scorpio, Moon in Gemini

You are drawn to things that often bring about your undoing. Form, not content, appearance rather than reality are all-important to you. You are subject to extremes, not realizing the implications of your actions.


Your astrological positions indicate a person with a gift for outward expression, who could carve a career in writing, reviewing, or literary criticism. However, your imagination operates fitfully, with periods of intense creativity followed by moments when you are sure your mind is barren.


You tend to be diffuse, and often the only feelings you can muster are superficial ones. In love, too, you vacillate in interest, plunging quite intensely into each new affair. The key to a more harmonious inner self lies in cultivating the strong will that is inherent in your nature.

Ascendant in Pisces, Neptune in the Seventh House
At the time of your birth the zodiacal sign of Pisces was ascending in the horizon. Its ruler Neptune is located in the seventh house. Usually, because of the dual nature of this sign, your experiences seem always to oscillate between two extremes.


Emotionally, you may become confounded and perplexed when your soul is torn between opposite attractions. Your temperament is, nevertheless, kindly and able to appreciate the most subtle emotional experiences.


You are inclined to introverted living - reserved and retiring. You would do well to gear your life to occupations where your creativeness can be expressed freely.
Your life will be replete with flux and change, and yet this will not be a source of annoyance as you are most adaptable to situations.

Essentially, you are expansive, guided by intuition and emotion, and falling very easily into elated or depressive moods.

[i]You have a natural ability to perceive from unknown sources where the mind does not intervene. Such an ability, unfortunately, is usually misunderstood or has little application in life. If you do become involved in art, however, there are very good prospects for success as a painter, musician, writer, or poet.
Your sexual life will be highly varied and intense. When you fall in love, you feel as if the limitations of your personality are dissolving and you are receptive to everything that exists. [i]



You need a strong hand to protect you and lead you into the practical world. Generally, you have inclinations and tendencies for the following: professions dealing with occult matter or mediumships, religion, seafaring, acting, psychometry, clairvoyance, painting, poetry, mysticism, and espionage.


You will have certain difficulties in fulfilling personal relationships. Alliances will be exceptional and strange. You may sacrifice your aesthetic feelings in a relationship with a person who requires a show of your altruistic disposition. There are possibilities of a platonic union or one that may create restraint in your sexual life. Heights of happiness and great depths of sadness can be expected from this position.

Saturn in the Third House
Saturn appeared in the third house at the time of your birth. This planet brings an aura of objectivity and contriving to all mental functions; the general attitude is reserved, serious, and lacking in dynamism, warmth and flexibility. You are a thinker and a slow, but determined planner.
The struggle to realize your life plans might be difficult, and you will receive little assistance from persons close to you.
You tend to worry needlessly or give excessive attention to plans which will yield very little in relation to the effort invested. We advise you to plan things carefully and realistically without overdoing it.
Saturn here represents duties that you must comply with and which are of an intellectual nature. It also points to tests of character occurring at critical points of human relationship, which can only be successfully "passed" by developing an altruistic and compassionate nature that will make pardon and forgiveness feasible.

Moon in the Fourth House
The Moon was found in the fourth house at the time of your birth. Moon here will definitely influence events concerning your mother, places of residence and family matters.
Both your childhood and even your older age will be characterized by a love of romance, various journeys, and interesting adventures.


[i]The liability of this astrological combination is that it gives you an uncertain position in life and a perpetual striving for material security that seems to be hard to come by. This may be relieved temporarily by your receiving a small inheritance and will be almost overcome by the final years of your life by excellent family care and assistance. [i]

Sun in the Seventh House
The Sun was found in the seventh house at the time of your birth. Among other things, this means that your individuality is required to accomplish certain important developments in connection with associations and marriage. It appears, that you will be married to a rather proud but dignified individual, and much of all the progress that you will make in life will be a derivation of your relationship.
In any instance, you can expect throughout life the origination of lasting attachments and noble friendships.

Venus in the Eighth House
Venus was found in your eighth house at the time of birth. This is a favorable position regarding the possibilities of financial gain through businesses owned by your partner or by associates.
Psychologically, you are going to find many harmonious conditions in your sexual relationships.


[i]If your inner growth is such that your vital energies are oriented toward spiritual rather than material pleasures, then you will arrive at gratification and happiness through inquiry into the mysteries of life and death. [i]


You should have some excellent opportunities for progress in your financial and social condition during your middle age or when you finally stabilize your life through marriage or any other type of close relationship.
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Malia » Fri Apr 09, 2010 6:29 pm

I don't know if I can exactly call this sighting random, as I went out on a Keats search through my Google engine this morning :wink: But it is a wonderful little find. This is from a series in The Guardian called "My Hero"--apparently, Helen Dunmore's hero is none other than Keats. What she says resonates with my own love of Keats--and why I, like so many others, just love the guy!

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2010/ma ... john-keats
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby BrokenLyre » Fri Apr 09, 2010 7:06 pm

Once again Malia, you have found some interesting things for us to read. Thank you so much.
I couldn't agree with you more.
"Come... dry your eyes, for you are life, rarer than a quark and unpredictable beyond the dreams of Heisenberg; the clay in which the forces that shape all things leave their fingerprints most clearly. Dry your eyes... and let's go home."
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Raphael » Sat Apr 10, 2010 11:29 pm

Thank you Malia- it's great to see him get a mention in a national newspaper.I ate a nectarine this evening actually- and thought of him. :D
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Saturn » Wed Apr 21, 2010 8:54 pm

I've just watched the excellent [no really] 'Me and Orson Welles' and Ode on a Grecian urn is quoted almost in full by one of the characters. The film has as one of it's themes the transience of human experience and the attempt to create a timeless piece of art, in this case a performance of Julius Caesar, and the urn in a museum is a timeless piece, constant and ever unresolved, unlike the quicksilver fluidity of live theatre.
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Raphael » Wed Apr 21, 2010 9:27 pm

Saturn wrote:I've just watched the excellent [no really] 'Me and Orson Welles' and Ode on a Grecian urn is quoted almost in full by one of the characters. The film has as one of it's themes the transience of human experience and the attempt to create a timeless piece of art, in this case a performance of Julius Caesar, and the urn in a museum is a timeless piece, constant and ever unresolved, unlike the quicksilver fluidity of live theatre.


That's great! :D
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Malia » Mon May 10, 2010 9:27 pm

This is most definitely not a random sighting, as I was doing a search for Keats through literary journals when I ran across this, but as I can't seem to find the "Poetry about Keats" thread, I thought I'd post this interesting and haunting poem about our Poet here:

Riding With Keats

He is so light that his patient horse
might carry him for a thousand years,
this little man whose hand
clutches quietly at the reins.
When we ride each morning
along the Tiber, I see
the ardor of his bowed face
flash over the dark water,
I watch his eyes that watch nothing
glow and deepen with
the slow immensity of words,
I feel his whole body grow
into another language,
the sweet and awkward syllables
of its solitude.

Our horses’ nostrils quiver
with each quick breath
of rising wind
as if they smelled the coming snow.

But what will come with the snow?

The storm of a thousand hooves
plunging across the piazza,
the ghostly hailstones chiming
in a dazzle of blue crystal
under our stunned feet,
the sudden hush of deep drifts
closing endlessly
over the loneliness
of our long ride together
through this hardbreathing silence.

--Rita Signorelli-Pappas
1987
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Raphael » Mon May 10, 2010 10:17 pm

Thanks for this Malia- it's nice to see how he touches people's hearts.
John....you did not live to see-
who we are because of what you left,
what it is we are in what we make of you.

Peter Sanson, 1995.
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Cybele » Tue May 11, 2010 2:40 am

I think most here would enjoy this poem by the American poet, Billy Collins. (And I do hope I'm not breaking any copyright laws by posting this! The poem is from his book, "The Art of Drowning." (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1995)

"Keats's Handwriting"
-Billy Collins

In print, his poems look as inert as anyone's,
reposing in the open coffin of an anthology,
the type faceless and duplicate,
every letter silent,
the work finished, done for the day.

But here, on this thin sheet of manuscript
in the tiny industry of his penmanship
with its loops and flourishes,
leafy stems, broad crosses, sudden dots,
you can feel the quick jitter of writing,
the animal scratching of the nib,
even the blood beating in the temples.
You can see the light that must have fallen on this page
from an orange candle or a stark winter sun.

Magnified, every minuscule is a photograph;
every indelible accident is a trace of random life,
a moment caught in a spot or fleck,
the thin pen dipped and lifted,
a droplet of ink trembling in the air of the present.

It is enough to make you inhale deeply,
breath in the brine of a whole century
that held him in her rolling waves
and lapped against the sides of his poems.

And if you lean against the glass case,
bending forward, as he must have over his page,
you can almost see the white linen cuff,
the dark sleeve, the warm ruddy hand
as if it were your own,
as if your body could fit into his body
the way the life of Shakespeare fits
perfectly into the life of Cervantes.

Then you could rise in a suit of Keats,
walk in his garden, lie on his couch,
the seat of English drowsiness.
And every time you closed your eyes,
you would enter a bower of eglantine
or a liquid glade alive with nymphs.
You would see in the inkwell's black pool
a glossy lake, a musk rose blowing,
night-swollen mushrooms,
and the long, billowing hair of the Muses.
======================================

I love this whole book -- but I especially love this poem for very obvious reasons.
Last edited by Cybele on Sat Jun 05, 2010 7:10 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Random Keats Sightings

Postby Malia » Tue May 11, 2010 3:33 am

Oh! That is fabulous, Cybele! I *love* it! I am a fan of Billy Collins' poetry, myself--but I had no idea he'd written a poem about Keats. I'm not too surprised, though, Keats is the "poet's poet" to be sure. That poem resonates with me. I've been exposed to Keats's original manuscripts . . . come face to face with them while peering into glass cases, and I completely and viscerally comprehend where Collins is coming from (at least on one level!). You fall right into a new sense of the *person* when you are in the presence of a manuscript. I remember how my heart ached when I read Keats's letter to Mrs. Brawne from on board the Maria Crowther--and the tiny cramped scrawl of his closing post script "Good Bye Fanny! God Bless you!" The words nearly trailed off into nothingness at the end--I could feel the immense weight of despair and exhaustion Keats must have experienced at that moment.
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