Submit Your Poems
Get Your Premium Membership

See and share Beautiful Nature Photos and amazing photos of interesting places

Ode on a Grecian Urn

Written by: John Keats | Biography
 | Quotes (59) |
THOU still unravish'd bride of quietness  
Thou foster-child of Silence and slow Time  
Sylvan historian who canst thus express 
A flowery tale more sweetly than our rhyme: 
What leaf-fringed legend haunts about thy shape 5 
Of deities or mortals or of both  
In Tempe or the dales of Arcady? 
What men or gods are these? What maidens loth? 
What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape? 
What pipes and timbrels? What wild ecstasy? 10 

Heard melodies are sweet but those unheard 
Are sweeter; therefore ye soft pipes play on; 
Not to the sensual ear but more endear'd  
Pipe to the spirit ditties of no tone: 
Fair youth beneath the trees thou canst not leave 15 
Thy song nor ever can those trees be bare; 
Bold Lover never never canst thou kiss  
Though winning near the goal¡ªyet do not grieve; 
She cannot fade though thou hast not thy bliss  
For ever wilt thou love and she be fair! 20 

Ah happy happy boughs! that cannot shed 
Your leaves nor ever bid the Spring adieu; 
And happy melodist unweari¨¨d  
For ever piping songs for ever new; 
More happy love! more happy happy love! 25 
For ever warm and still to be enjoy'd  
For ever panting and for ever young; 
All breathing human passion far above  
That leaves a heart high-sorrowful and cloy'd  
A burning forehead and a parching tongue. 30 

Who are these coming to the sacrifice? 
To what green altar O mysterious priest  
Lead'st thou that heifer lowing at the skies  
And all her silken flanks with garlands drest? 
What little town by river or sea-shore 35 
Or mountain-built with peaceful citadel  
Is emptied of its folk this pious morn? 
And little town thy streets for evermore 
Will silent be; and not a soul to tell 
Why thou art desolate can e'er return. 40 

O Attic shape! fair attitude! with brede 
Of marble men and maidens overwrought  
With forest branches and the trodden weed; 
Thou silent form! dost tease us out of thought 
As doth eternity: Cold Pastoral! 45 
When old age shall this generation waste  
Thou shalt remain in midst of other woe 
Than ours a friend to man to whom thou say'st  
'Beauty is truth truth beauty ¡ªthat is all 
Ye know on earth and all ye need to know.' 50 



Comments