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John Keats : Ode on Melancholy

				I
No, no, go not to Lethe1, neither twist
	Wolf's-bane2, tight-rooted, for its poisonous wine;
Nor suffer thy pale forehead to be kiss'd
	By nightshade3, ruby grape of Proserpine4;
Make not your rosary of yew-berries5,
	Nor let the beetle6, nor the death-moth7 be
		Your mournful Psyche8, nor the downy owl9
A partner in your sorrow's mysteries;
	For shade to shade will come too drowsily,
		And drown the wakeful anguish of the soul.

				II
But when the melancholy fit shall fall
	Sudden from heaven like a weeping cloud,
That fosters the droop-headed flowers all,
	And hides the green hill in an April shroud;
Then glut thy sorrow on a morning rose,
	Or on the rainbow of the salt sand-wave,
		Or on the wealth of a globed peonies;
Or if thy mistress some rich anger shows,
	Emprison her soft hand, and let her rave,
		And feed deep, deep upon her peerless eyes. 

				III
She dwells with Beauty—Beauty that must die;
	And Joy, whose hand is ever at his lips
Bidding adieu; and aching Pleasure nigh,
	Turning to Poison while the bee-mouth sips:
Ay, in the very temple of delight
	Veil'd Melancholy has her sovran10 shrine,
		Though seen of none save him whose strenuous
	tongue
	Can burst Joy's grape against his palate fine;
His soul shall taste the sadness of her might,
		And be among her cloudy trophies hung. 

John Keats (1795-1821)	P. 1820

 
FOOTNOTES
1 river in Hades; 2 +3 poisonous plants; 4 queen of Hades, wife of Pluto; 5, 6, 7, and 9 all symbols of, or associated with, mourning; 8,the soul; 10 sovereign
 

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