who can help me to understand THE ODE TO AUTUMN

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who can help me to understand THE ODE TO AUTUMN

Postby Jessica King » Tue Jan 03, 2006 9:53 am

Jessica King
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Postby Malia » Tue Jan 03, 2006 9:58 pm

What exactly are you interested in learning about the poem? Its themes? Structure? Philosophy? History? Everything? :wink:
It's hard for me to just jump in and start talking about it--it's kind of like eating a pie all at once rather than piece by piece--but if you choose an idea you want to focus on, maybe I can discuss the poem with you as it is one of my favorites.
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About the poem ODE TO AUTUMN

Postby Jessica King » Mon Jan 09, 2006 9:02 am

It's quite a great pleasure to get your reply. :lol:
What I am interested in is its theme.
In fact, it is the question on my final exam paper of English Literature.
The question asked us to explain the personaziton in the poem and I have no idea about it.
You see, I am an English major in China. And we have just learned English poem from this semester, so I am quite poor on it.
But I like poems for children very much. It's full of wonderful imagination.
Can you tell me something about the personaziton in the poem?
Thank you very much! :D
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Postby Saturn » Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:36 am

Here's the amswer I gave to this question a long time ago. I hope it is of some help to you - good luck.

I'm cheating a bit here by looking at the notes in the Complete Poems (Penguin Classics edition).

There it says that the poems meaning is implict, not explicit .

As for my own view, I think that Keats is defnitely showing a preference for Autumn, as opposed to the most popular season for most people, Summer.

In the poem he personifies Autumn (a common poetic device) in order to describe it's operations, or it's attributes. He pictures Autumn like a Classical goddess, much like the Greek goddess Persephone (Roman name Prosperine) whose abduction by Hades (Roman name Pluto) is one of the most famous and influential of the Greek myths.

Persephone's abduction caused her mother Demeter (Roman name Ceres) such grief that she, as goddess of the harvest, left all her work and the earth was barren and unproductive for many years.

Eventually, Zeus (Jupiter in the Roman pantheon) relented and allowed Persephone to remain six months on the earth and the other six months in the infernal regions of Hades.

This famous myth is how the ancient Greeks tried to explain the seasons, much as in the same way (and this may be controversial to some) the "Bible" uses stories like Genesis to explain things that were totally uniteligible to our ancestors.

Well, I've gone off the point a bit, but anyway, Keats uses the first two stanzas to describe the various processes of nature that happen in Autumn and in the third stanza, he celebrates Autumn as a time which has it's own particular charms, a time of change, but not a totally desolate period as most people think (only the mention of "stubble-plains" gives a hint of the winter to come).
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