Poems published in 1820, by John Keats

Ode.

Bards of Passion and of Mirth,

Ye have left your souls on earth!

Have ye souls in heaven too,

Double-lived in regions new?

Yes, and those of heaven commune

With the spheres of sun and moon;

With the noise of fountains wond’rous,

And the parle of voices thund’rous;

With the whisper of heaven’s trees

And one another, in soft ease 10

Seated on Elysian lawns

Brows’d by none but Dian’s fawns

Underneath large blue-bells tented,

Where the daisies are rose-scented,

And the rose herself has got

Perfume which on earth is not;

Where the nightingale doth sing

Not a senseless, tranced thing,

But divine melodious truth;

Philosophic numbers smooth; 20

Tales and golden histories

Of heaven and its mysteries.

Thus ye live on high, and then

On the earth ye live again;

And the souls ye left behind you

Teach us, here, the way to find you,

Where your other souls are joying,

Never slumber’d, never cloying.

Here, your earth-born souls still speak

To mortals, of their little week; 30

Of their sorrows and delights;

Of their passions and their spites;

Of their glory and their shame;

What doth strengthen and what maim.

Thus ye teach us, every day,

Wisdom, though fled far away.

Bards of Passion and of Mirth,

Ye have left your souls on earth!

Ye have souls in heaven too,

Double-lived in regions new! 40

Notes

l. 1. Bards, poets and singers.

l. 8. parle, French parler. Cf. Hamlet, I. i. 62.

l. 12. Dian’s fawns. Diana was the goddess of hunting.

http://ebooks.adelaide.edu.au/k/keats/john/poems1820/bards-of-passion.html

Last updated Friday, March 7, 2014 at 21:44