Every poetry lover and those who cannot think of a life beyond love knows that John Keats was one of the greatest romantic poets of the yesteryears. While he has passed leaving a legacy of romance behind, his love still prevails through his poetic gestures.
To Emma is one of John Keats’ Best Love Poems. His words of love breathed into a poem in the year 1815. Not many people knew of the poem until Keats’ brother, George, used the lines to address his late wife. The first edition of printing happened in the year 1883. You can listen to a narration of the poem here:
O come, dearest Emma! the rose is full blown,
And the riches of Flora are lavishly strown;
The air is all softness, and chrystal the streams,
And the west is resplendently cloathed in beams.
We will hasten, my fair, to the opening glades,
The quaintly carv’d seats, and the freshening shades;
Where the fairies are chaunting their evening hymns,
And in the last sun-beam the sylph lightly swims.
And when thou art weary, I’ll find thee a bed,
Of mosses, and flowers, to pillow thy head;
There, beauteous Emma, I’ll sit at thy feet,
While my story of love I enraptur’d repeat.
So fondly I’ll breathe, and so softly I’ll sigh,
Thou wilt think that some amorous zephyr is nigh;
Ah! no–as I breathe it, I press thy fair knee,
And then, thou wilt know that the sigh comes from me.
Then why, lovely girl, should we lose all these blisses?
That mortal’s a fool who such happiness misses;
So smile acquiescence, and give me thy hand,
With love-looking eyes, and with voice sweetly bland.
Gone are the days when poets spent time singing those ‘awww’some compliments in catchy wordiness. Let’s revel in this historical piece of literature then! To Emma is a lovely exhibit, oh John Keats’ love for Emma. In the first few paragraphs, he describes a surreal place where he wants to spend time with his love. He goes on to speak of the blooming roses and the dream-like sunset. In stanza three, Keats offers Emma a pillow of mosses and flowers for her to relax from the day’s fatigue.
The last line of the third stanza is one that stands out the most- While my story of love I enraptur’d repeat. It seems like an imagination, to have a man, sit at a woman’s feet, and narrate the story of their love. This is precisely what Keats offers to his lady love. The last stanza of the poem leaves readers in a philosophical mode. The poet speaks about how humans are fools, to switch the time with their loved ones with something else. Pure bliss lies in being with the people we feel strongly for, and that is how to live life.
The poem, To Emma, does not just speak of the love Keats had for Emma, but also teaches the people of today, that such a relationship is irreplaceable. All one needs to survive in a lasting relationship is their partner’s hand in support. When one has that, the world wouldn’t seem like a difficult place to live in.
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