Suffering and Death

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

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Suffering and Death

Postby Ennis » Tue Feb 21, 2012 9:27 pm

Thursday is The Day (or Night, I should say), as you all know. :(
At least we can feel some consolation that it was, at least consciously, what he wanted.
"But if you will fully love me, though there may be some fire, 'twill not be more than we can bear when moistened and bedewed with Pleasures." JK to FB 08.07.1819
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Re: Suffering and Death

Postby Saturn » Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:25 pm

Well if you mean he wanted death as an end to his suffering perhaps he did get what he wanted, I hope so. I have no stock in religion, but wherever the atoms that once were Keats roam now, I hope they have found peace and some kind of cosmic contentment.

Keats loved life though, and I'm sure if he had been able to recover he would have lived his life to the very fullest of his abilities.
"Oh what a misery it is to have an intellect in splints".
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Re: Suffering and Death

Postby Maureen » Thu Feb 23, 2012 5:16 pm

Indeed. As posted elsewhere, I have this morning visited all that is mortal of him and laid a rose on his grave. As Joseph Severn (who now rests beside him) assured him, it is a peaceful beuutiful place, and he is surrounded by shady trees, near an ancient pyramid and cats wander the graveyard. As you may know, Shelley is not far away, and we visited his grave too.

It was wonderful to reflect on the fact that his name has not, as he feared, been writ in water that there are fresh flowers by his tomb, obviously put there by admirers, as well as lipstick marks on his stone! I am not a religious person either but if his spirit exists on another realm he must be reassured and delighted. It is just such a pity he never lived to see how famous and loved he would become.
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Re: Suffering and Death

Postby BrokenLyre » Thu Feb 23, 2012 6:24 pm

Thanks Maureen. I would love to be in Rome today. I guess there are a thousand complicated feelings and thoughts we all have about our friend, whose passing we remember. I wish I could figure mine out. One strand of thought is that I feel very fortunate that my short life has intersected with Keats and been deeply affected by him. Strange that time is a one way street forward, but I am affected by reflecting on a man from the past. I will probably spend the rest of my working day thinking about today.
"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: Suffering and Death

Postby Ennis » Thu Feb 23, 2012 6:42 pm

Maureen wrote:Indeed. As posted elsewhere, I have this morning visited all that is mortal of him and laid a rose on his grave. As Joseph Severn (who now rests beside him) assured him, it is a peaceful beuutiful place, and he is surrounded by shady trees, near an ancient pyramid and cats wander the graveyard. As you may know, Shelley is not far away, and we visited his grave too.

It was wonderful to reflect on the fact that his name has not, as he feared, been writ in water that there are fresh flowers by his tomb, obviously put there by admirers, as well as lipstick marks on his stone! I am not a religious person either but if his spirit exists on another realm he must be reassured and delighted. It is just such a pity he never lived to see how famous and loved he would become.



Thank you, Maureen, from all of us. Goddess bless, you John; you are NOT forgotten, ever!!
"But if you will fully love me, though there may be some fire, 'twill not be more than we can bear when moistened and bedewed with Pleasures." JK to FB 08.07.1819
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Re: Suffering and Death

Postby MrsRsCat » Fri Feb 24, 2012 1:22 pm

Broken Lyre's post reminds me I had meant to post this yesterday.

Leigh Hunt's words in a letter - a prayer, almost - to Severn, written before he had news of Keats' death never fail to move me:

"I hear he does not like to be told that he may get better, nor is it to be wondered at, considering his firm persuasion that he shall not thrive. But if this persuasion should happen no longer to be strong upon him, or if he can now put up with such attempts to console him, remind him of hat I have said a thousand times, and what I still think always, that I have seen too many cases of recovery from apparently desperate cases of consumption, not to indulge in hope to the very last.

"If he still cannot bear this, tell him - tell that great poet and noble-hearted man that we shall all bear his memory in the most precious parts of our hearts, and that the world shall bow their heads to it as our loves do. Or if this ... will trouble his spirit, tell him that we shall never cease to remember and love him, and that, Christian or Infidel, the most sceptical of us has faith enough in the high things that nature puts into our heads, to think that all who are of one accord in mind or heart are journeying to one and the same place and shall meet somehow or other again, face to face, mutually conscious, mutually delighted.

"Tell him he is only before us on the road, as he was in everything else; or whether you tell him the latter or no, tell him the former, and add, that we shall never forget that he was so, and that we are coming after him."
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Re: Suffering and Death

Postby BrokenLyre » Fri Feb 24, 2012 11:46 pm

Oh my, thanks for the great read MrsRsCat and the touching reminder of Hunt's lovely words. Moving indeed.
"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: Suffering and Death

Postby Ennis » Sat Feb 25, 2012 3:02 am

BrokenLyre wrote:Oh my, thanks for the great read MrsRsCat and the touching reminder of Hunt's lovely words. Moving indeed.


What extraordinary friends Keats had, especially Leigh Hunt and William Haslam. "Scholars" are entitled to their opinion of Hunt's (negative) influence on Keats' poetry, but that man was there for John every step of the way. Had it not been for Marianne and all those little Hunts, Leigh would have been on the Maria Crowther instead of Severn. And you're correct MrsRsCat, Hunt's eulogy (for lack of a better term; Leigh, after all, was not aware John had died when he penned that letter to Severn) is so damned beautiful. It moves me to tears every time I read it.
Yeah, and where were YOU, Mr. Brown. . . . ?
"But if you will fully love me, though there may be some fire, 'twill not be more than we can bear when moistened and bedewed with Pleasures." JK to FB 08.07.1819
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Re: Suffering and Death

Postby Cath » Mon Feb 27, 2012 1:55 pm

What is especially painful about those beautiful words from Hunt is that Keats never heard them. How it would have cheered (or broken?) his heart to hear that "he is only before us on the road, as he was in everything else" and that "we shall never forget that he was so, and that we are coming after him."
"Why should we be owls, when we can be Eagles?" (Keats to Reynolds, 3 February 1818)
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Re: Suffering and Death

Postby Raphael » Wed Feb 29, 2012 1:50 am

I have been so caught up in the tedious s***** going on in my life lately that I forgot!!!! the 23rd February.. :oops:
Very bad of me.
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: Suffering and Death

Postby Ennis » Mon Mar 19, 2012 3:20 am

17th.March.1821

The Keats' Circle finds out about Keats's death. And poor Leigh Hunt's last letter (after Keats' death, although he didn't know it at the time, had already occurred. . . . .) :( :(

"Too one whose name is writ in water.'' :( :(

"He is; he is with Shakespeare." :)
William Arnold
Last edited by Ennis on Tue Mar 27, 2012 2:15 am, edited 1 time in total.
"But if you will fully love me, though there may be some fire, 'twill not be more than we can bear when moistened and bedewed with Pleasures." JK to FB 08.07.1819
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Re: Suffering and Death

Postby Raphael » Mon Mar 19, 2012 10:41 pm

Devastating news and made all the worse that it took a few weeks to reach them
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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