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"Ode to Nightingale" is considered one of Keats's most passionate poems. ...

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kikifatz | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 23, 2008 at 4:39 AM via web

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"Ode to Nightingale" is considered one of Keats's most passionate poems. 

What devices does he use to project this with the reference to imagery,figures of speech, poet's personal tragedy,and his emotinal response to life and death?

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pmiranda2857 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted March 23, 2008 at 5:07 AM (Answer #1)

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The writer becomes captivated by the nightingale's peaceful song. Keats' father & mother died when he was young and his brother had recently died of tuberculosis. In the first stanza, Keats is depressed but the nightingale's song makes him joyful, he forgets about his troubled reality. Keats yearns for "a draught of vintage (wine) ...the country green, / Dance and Provencal song, and sun burnt mirth,/ ... the warm South" (L 11-15). This can be taken literally, or, figuratively to mean that he would like to enjoy the comforting things in the world. He wishes to "drink, and leave the world unseen" (L 19), thus avoiding the negative aspects of reality. At this point, he would rather "with thee fade away into the forest dim" (L 20), where he doesn't have to think and, in fact, live. The nightingale never has to face the aging process and loss of loved ones. In the sixth stanza he explains his personal feelings of being "half in love with easeful Death" (L 52). "Death," "love" and "easeful" in the same sentence is an interesting combination that signifies Keats' embracing attitude towards death. Suddenly, in the final stanza, the spell is broken and Keats is "tolled back from thee to my sole self" (L 72). Again, the impression of loneliness is created.

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