Why Is He Known For A Valediction and An Ode On A Grecian Urn, But Not This?

It’s the twenty-first century, and this is the Internet. John Keats should be best known for “To a Cat”:

Cat! who has pass’d thy grand climacteric,
     How many mice and rats hast in thy days
     Destroy’d? How many tit-bits stolen? Gaze
With those bright languid segments green, and prick
     Those velvet ears – but pr’ythee do not stick
     Thy latent talons in me – and tell me all thy frays,
Of fish and mice, and rats and tender chick;
Nay, look not down, nor lick thy dainty wrists, –
     For all the wheezy asthma – and for all
Thy tail’s tip is nick’d off – and though the fists
     Of many a maid have given thee many a maul,
Still is thy fur as when the lists
     In youth thou enter’dst on glass-bottled wall.

I came across this one about a third of the way through the complete works of Keats that I’ve been reading off and on for a couple of years. It’s actually a collection of the complete works of Keats and Percy Bysshe Shelley, so the Keats is not the half of it. Dude died at 25 and left almost four hundred pages of poems sometimes double-stacked on a page (but sometimes “Endymion”). Me, I’ve written two poems in the last ten years (but but sold one for $100 bucks, which is a feat neither Keats nor Shelley can likely match).

I suppose I need to drag myself with a pad of paper to the coffee house in Republic one of these days (Black Lab Coffee, even though there’s a new location of Classic Rock Coffee out there, but Black Lab was there first and supports the Pregnancy Resource Center as we do). Otherwise, I am likely to hit twice Keats age with only a hundred and something pages of poetry for posterity.

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