At a glance:
In the sonnet “When I Have Fears,” John Keats gives expression to his fear that his young life may be cut off before he has a chance to experience the love of a woman and to develop and complete his calling as a poet. These feelings leave him with a forsaken sense of the vanity of love and fame. The very first line, “When I have fears that I may cease to be,” captures the reader’s attention at once, for the fear of premature death is universal. Especially when the potential of a richly productive and rewarding life is anticipated so intensely, the threat to...
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