BOOK REVIEW: Selected Poems by John Keats

Selected Poems (Macmillan Collector's Library Book 189)Selected Poems by John Keats
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

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This collection of sixty-one poems from the early 19th century British Romantic poet contains a diverse cross-section of poems. While 61 poems might not seem like a substantial selection by today’s standards, this volume includes several long form poems such a “Lamia,” “Hyperion,” and a long excerpt from “Endymion.” It includes all of Keats’ most popular and anthologized works, including: “Ode to a Grecian Urn,” “To Sleep,” “Bright Star…,” “To Autumn,” and “Ode to a Nightingale.” Among the works included are short, medium, and long poems; rhymed verse and blank verse; sonnets and ballads; love poems, nature poems, Greek Mythological fan fiction [in verse,] and homages to important influences — e.g. Shakespeare.

Keats died at 25, making it all the more impressive that he had a body of work from which such a fine selection could be pulled. His imagery is vivid, and his lyricism is musical. I’d highly recommend this collection as an excellent overview of Keats’ poetry.


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