Keats Looking Into Chapman’s Future
It was his love for Fanny
that he thought of while at work,
and lines of poetry.
His ever present cough in the night---
Jack jumped over the candlestick---
beside the creek, a thought of Greek---
he envisioned Athens below the hill,
the ancient past
left in the hands of Shakespeare.
Milton in his blindness
pulling down his underpants,
paradise can be so dark.
Shelley trying to fight off the storm at sea,
longing to kick desert sand
in the face of Ozymandias.
Keats pondered all of this and more,
going home after work
a poem crossed his path like lizards
and the sun was setting behind the Atlantic,
its red face like American Indians
shooting arrows at pale-faced poets.
He traced his thoughts upon the paper,
the poems becoming alive in his head.
Suddenly, the words do not belong to him, anymore,
and that is how they came into our possession.
We marvel at his offspring
and the songs they sing.