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Analysis of Keats' 'Ode To Autumn'Arguably Keats' greatest ode is 'To Autumn'. The poem features many a Romantic quality, particularly through its use of sensual

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Introduction

Analysis of Keats' 'Ode To Autumn' Arguably Keats' greatest ode is 'To Autumn'. The poem features many a Romantic quality, particularly through its use of sensual imagery which appeals to all aspects of the human senses. The time the poem was written is crucial to its interpretation, as behind Keats' vivid use of description and imagery lies a much deeper message. Keats is not just talking about autumn; he is talking about life, and more relevantly, the end of it. 'To Autumn' clearly expresses Keats' knowledge of his inevitable, and rapidly approaching death. The three stanzas of the poem each carry a unique significance to the message Keats is illustrating. All three consist of eleven lines, and each stanza starts with an alternate rhyme scheme. ...read more.

Middle

Keats describes the flowers as "budding more", which not only enhances the idea of there being plenty of everything, but also emphasises the concept of beginnings and fresh starts. He talks about how it seems as though the "warm days" are "never" going to end, which goes further to impress upon the idea of youth, how everything appears young and it seems almost impossible to look toward anything ever ending. Stanza two is intended to represent the middle of the three extended metaphors: autumn, day and life. Keats uses strong visual imagery in this stanza, He personifies the season as being "sound asleep" against a "half-reap'd" furrow; this portrayal of drowsiness creates the idea of a late afternoon and "half-reap'd" draws a picture of an unfinished job and preparation for the harvest. ...read more.

Conclusion

In contrast to the image of beginnings in stanza one, the final stanza describes the lambs as "full-grown". The powerful imagery which appeals to our sense of sound all comes together to portray a final image - that of the end. The procedures of autumn have finished, Keats describes the swallows as "gathering", ready to migrate. The rich use of imagery throughout the poem which appeals to all of our senses is certainly a quality which demonstrates Keats' romantic style of writing. Through Keats' use of imagery we are able to see for ourselves the power of his imagination - a characteristic which Romanticism places great importance upon. The use of contrasts within the poem - beginning and end for example, is also a theme which the Romantics liked to exploit. ...read more.

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