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In, "To One Who Has Been Long In City Pent," he utilises personification to highlight his relationship with nature.He describes nature as the, "Open face of heaven," He also employs complex similes to compare his sadness at leaving the countryside to that of an angel weeping.
However, it takes several readings of his poems to fully understand his meaning behind certain metaphors and other figurative language techniques.
One of the most demanding aspects of Keats' poetry is the abstract idea of negative capability.
The poet believes that one can escape from the dull reality of urban life in two ways, through literature and through nature.
Another aspect of Keats's poetry which should not be overlooked is his employment of strong, potent imagery in order to represent and develop his abstract ideas.
Within the opening lines, Keats describes a knight, "Alone and palely loitering," and subsequently establishes the setting as dark and ominous through his description of nature's sickly state, with the lines, "The sedge has withered from the lake, and no birds sing," The use of natural imagery is continued throughout the poem, with vivid descriptions of, "Roots of relish sweet," and, "Honey wild, and manna dew," This marks a distinct change in mood from the gloom created by the earlier imagery, to magical, romantic imagery, as the Belle Dame tempts the knight.
Keats recognises that love has the capability to cause pain.
Keats says that reading amazing books makes him feel, "Pure serene," This is then precisely captured when his simile compares Chapman's translation of Homer to being, "Like some watcher of the skies when a new planet swims into his ken," The conceit of the poet as an adventurer and traveller in the wonderfully exciting world of literature runs throughout the poem, and helped communicate to me the awestruck feelings of the poet when reading this version of Homer.
Personally, in this poem, I did not feel as though Keats' style was immediately clear, but after a little thought, his point is very direct and intelligible.
He goes on to contemplate his grief if he were never given the chance to capture the beauty of, "Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance," and describes the process of their description in his poetry as tracing, "Their shadows with the magic hand of chance," This seems to show a recognition that his poetry, and the beauty that inspires it, is something magical and other-worldly, and this realisation adds to his distress, were he to die and never fully reach his poetic potential.
In this way, Keats' ideas are most certainly abstract, and, in my opinion, are expressed clearly and directly in this poem.