On First Looking Into Keats’ House

O for a beaker full of the warm South! … That I might drink, and leave the world unseen

Much have I travelled in the Scottish rain; And fished by obstinate isles. British clouds do little for The mottoes on sundials.

Nothing propinks like propinquity: Warm Fanny waits next door. Our blood runs hot, but spot by spot, My cough forbids us more.

An antique sun now lures me south; Perhaps my lungs will warm. A difficult life in the London damp Yields to the call of home.

Notes

  1. Keats spent his last years in England at Charles Brown’s house in Hampstead. The house, in what is now known as Keats’ Grove, is preserved as a museum.
  2. Much have I travell’d in the realms of gold John Keats: “On first looking into Chapman’s Homer”
  3. In 1818, Keats and Brown toured the English Lakes and western Scotland on foot.
  4. See Ezra Pound, “E.P. Ode Pour L’election De Son Sepulchre”:

    His true Penelope was Flaubert, He fished by obstinate isles; Observed the elegance of Circe’s hair Rather than the mottoes on sundials.

  5. Fanny Brawne lived next door to Keats in Hampstead. They were greatly attached; she never married after his death.
  6. After Keats’ tuberculosis was diagnosed he travelled to Rome, hoping warmer weather might help him. He died there.
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