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The beginnings of his "postumous existence"

PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 2:16 am
by Ennis

"A few days after George's departure a long of cold snowy weather broke and a thaw set in. On February 3 Keats went into town for the day without his greatcoat, the weather so warm. When he came to take the evening coach back to Hampstead, it was frosty again. As usual, he could afford an outside seat, and riding back full against the wind, he was chilled to the bone. All day long he had felt fevered; now as he walked down Pond Street, his head whirled. When Brown saw him come staggering into Wentworth Place he thought at first that Keats was drunk. At second glance he saw he was seriously ill, flushed and trembling, hardly able to speak. Immediately Brown told him to go to bed. As Keats groped his way up the cold staircase and climbed into bed, a fit of coughing seized him. Brown, who followed him with a glass of spitits, heard him gasp, 'That is blood from my mouth.'

"As Brown hurried to his side, Keats hitched himself up on the pillows and told him to bring the candle close. In the wan circle of light Browne saw a spot of blood on the sheet, bright against the white. Keats muttered, 'This is unfortunate.' Then, according to Browne's account, he looked vey steady up into his friend's face and said, 'I know the colour of that blood. It's arterial blood. There's no mistaking that colour.' As calmly as he could, he added, 'That bood is my death-warrent. I must die.'"

--from John Keats; The Making of a Poet by Ailean Ward

Re: The beginnings of his "postumous existence"

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2012 12:17 am
by Raphael

Winter is so cruel.

Freezing weather then as now. Longing for Spring so I am.