• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Eternal Love Through Death in John Keats Bright Star

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Kwok Kwok Lai Chu, Yukie Prof. Michael O?Sullivan ENGE 2370 18 Oct 2013 Eternal Love Through Death in John Keats? Bright Star Love, being one of the most debated topics in literature, often serves as a source of inspirations for many of writers and poets, including John Keats. Throughout his life, he wrote countless love poems and letters, addressing his lover ? Fanny Brawne. The star, apart from being the symbol of steadfastness and constancy, it is also a metaphor representing Keats himself. Through Keats? idea of ?Mansion of life?, the poem is consisted of two floors where the first floor displays his passionate love for Brawne while the second floor talks about his inner desire for death. Keats first expresses his ideal, however paradoxical love. There are two essential yet conflicting qualities in this poem ? the reality verses the ideal and the immortal verses the mortal. On one hand, he would like to be like a star, steadfast and unchanging. On the other, he dislikes the solitude of the star as it has to watch ?the moving waters? and ?the new soft-fallen mask/Of snow? from afar like a ?sleepless Eremite?. ...read more.

Middle

While I was reading Bright Star, I could not help but catch the similarity between Keats and Shakespeare?s idea of love. In the opening of Shakespeare?s sonnet 116, ?Let me not to the marriage of true minds Admit impediments. Love is not love Which alters when it alteration finds, Or bends with the remover to remove: O no! it is an ever-fixed mark That looks on tempests and is never shaken; It is the star to every wandering bark, Whose worth?s unknown, although his height be taken.? (Shakespeare) Shakespeare talks about his ideal love and marriage. Keats, being a reader of Shakespeare, is in some way affected or inspired by him. Shakespeare describes love as an ?ever-fixed marks? that ?is never shaken? even in the wildest storms. Keats transformed Shakespeare?s ?ever-fixed? into steadfastness. Keats then moves on to talk about a more sexual and sensuous love. With more explicit descriptions of ?my [his] fair love?s? body parts, those descriptions hint the idea of sex and orgasm. ...read more.

Conclusion

Keats? obsession with death and his love for Fanny are intertwined seamlessly throughout the poem. In one of his letters, he states ?I have two luxuries to brood over in my walks, your loveliness and the hour of my death? (Poet.org). Not only is Keats intimidated by death, to some extent he is also intrigued by it. Even though he is worried about the approaching death, to him the promise of death is comforting and soothing. The only resolution to achieve the paradoxical ideal of being eternal as well as experiencing love is death. Through death, immutability and steadfastness can be achieved. Keats has seen many people died in his lifetime. His father died when he was eight; his mother died from tuberculosis when he was 14; his brother Tom died also from tuberculosis when he was 19. Along with his family?s deaths, he has also seen a lot of patients died as he was also a medical student. Therefore, constantly seeing people die in a way reminds him of the transience and the mutability of life. There are some religious references in the second quatrain of the poem. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level John Keats section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level John Keats essays

  1. The interplay of dreams and reality is frequently found within John Keats' poems.

    For I will fly with thee, Not charioted by Bacchus and his pards, But on the viewless wings of Poesy, Though the dull brain perplexes and retards." Poetry is the next means of escape. Here, I believe the metaphorical significance of the bird seems most clear.

  2. theme of loveliness

    Here he is focusing on the fact that life is fleeting and the physical beauty and loveliness of his beloved would not last forever, neither would his love. This shows that he is a staunch believer of the inner beauty because it is immortal and it does not need camouflage as opposed to physical beauty.

  1. A2 English Literature

    Owing to the frequent reminders of mortality Keats experienced in his short life, it is hardly surprising as a poet that he should be concerned with change. Having nursed his brother until his death of tuberculosis, Keats has first-hand knowledge of what he describes in 'Ode to a Nightingale' as

  2. From your reading of 'Sleep and Poetry' what have you learnt about Keats and ...

    interconnected within 'Sleep and poetry' and so he introduces the analysis of his chosen career in the same way that he did with sleep. In the above quotation Keats uses symbolic birds, for example eagles symbolise strength and power, and doves illustrate peace and purity, while swans are seen as graceful.

  1. "A Vale of Soul-Making" A Biography of John Keats

    and amusing acquaintances like John Reynolds, the poet Shelley, Haydon, and Charles Brown. Meanwhile, the sorrows that he had faced with his siblings had only brought them closer. The numerous letters, filled with frank openness and a brotherly protectiveness are testimony to the bond they shared till he was consumed by the despair of disease and death.

  2. John Keats was born on October 31st, 1795 in Finsbury Pavement near London.

    The poem is all about a 'knight-at-arms' who is doomed by a fortunate meeting in the meads with a beautiful lady. Enchanted by her sensual attraction, he sets her upon his steed and spends the day bewitched by her captivating company.

  1. How is Romanticism conveyed in Keats To Autumn'?

    Keats analyses throughout, how autumn brings goodness to nature. He pulls apart all the different aspects of autumn and focusses on different forms in order to allow the reader to interpret his perception of autumn. The last stanza has many connotations of death imbedded in the text. ?The soft dying day.? To refer to the day as ?soft dying? suggests that it is slowly coming to an end.

  2. Is "To Autumn" by Keats a purely descriptive poem?

    This could be of comfort to Keats and since his poetry had only just become rather successful, he may have felt like his family were in a way, watching over him. To Autumn is also a very analytical poem. Keats analyses throughout, how autumn brings goodness to nature.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work