John Keats When I Have Fears

Decent Essays
“When I Have Fears” by John Keats has a miserable tone as the speaker expresses his thoughts about his death. From the first two lines, the speaker introduces his fear of his ending. He says, “When I have fears that I may cease to be / Before my pen has glean’d my teeming brain” (Keats 1-2). It may be assumed that the speaker is the poet from these lines, since the word “pen” is associated with writing and expression. Keats describes other activities and desires that he will not be able to do or have because of his death that he believes he will encounter soon. He speaks about his yearnings and love in a way that seems as if he is already dying, or being deprived of his wants. This constructs the miserable tone. For example, “That I shall never look upon thee more, /…show more content…
He seems to be speaking to someone that he loves since he addresses his words to “thee” in these lines. The phrase “never have relish” leads on to the idea that Keats is already preparing himself for death, like he is savoring all his moments since he will not be able to taste the joy of them again. This mentality that he is going to die is what creates the miserable tone.
Furthermore, John Keats writes with a drained mood alongside his miserable tone. “When I Have Fears” is constructed with three different quatrains that divide differing rhyme schemes. Throughout these three different quatrains Keats illustrates features of life that he will not be able to witness and feel anymore once he dies. One such illustration is, “When I behold, upon the night’s
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