Question: Comment on Keats treatment of nature.
Or, what are the sensuous elements found in the poem ‘‘Ode to Autumn’’?
John Keats (1795 – 1821) is one of the major romantic poets. He is called ”the poet of beauty and sensuousness”. His poems are filled with romantic elements. ”Ode to Autumn” (1820) is also a poem of sensuousness.
The way of treatment of nature
Keats treats ”nature” in his poem ”Ode to Autumn” in the way of describing sensuousness. we get the perception of the five senses in his poem.
Sensuousness means the way of perception through five senses. five human senses are sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch.
More Notes of Poetry
Sense of sight
There are many examples of the sense of sight in the poem especially in the second stanza. the trees loaded with fruits standing round the thatches, the moss’d cottage trees, budding flowers, barred clouds, the shape of a countrywoman, etc are the examples of the sense of sight.
Sense of hearing
Wailful choir of the small gnats, the bleating of full-grown lambs, songs of the hedge crickets, whistles of the red-breast bird, etc are described in such a way that produces sound and that all knock to our ear. So, these are examples of the sense of hearing. The poet says:
“Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; …………………..
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;”
Sense of smell
The names of ripe fruits, flowers especially the fume of poppies that has a drowsing effect on the reapers, etc appeal
Sense of taste
The names like apples, gourd, the sweet kernel of the hazel shells, juice oozing of the cyder-press, etc that have been described in such a way that makes active our tongue. So, those are suitable examples of a sense of taste.
Sense of touch
The vines with fruits along the thatch-eves, the soft-dying day touching the stubble-plains, etc make active our sense of touch.
To sum up, this is pure water like clear that Keats’ poetic art is able to make happy his readers. He is successful to compose his poem with sensuous elements. That is why he is called ‘‘the poet of sensuousness’’.