Ode to Psyche, p.1

John Keats, “Ode to Psyche,” autograph manuscript, 1819, p. 1. MA 210.1. Acquired by J. Pierpont Morgan before 1913.


p. 1

     Ode       To Psyche
O Goddess! hear these tuneless numbers, wrung
     By sweet enforcement, and remembrance dear,
And pardon that thy secrets should be sung
     Even into thine own soft-chonched ear!
Surely I dreamt today; or I did I see,
     The winged Psyche, with awaken’d eyes?
I wander’d in a forest thoughtlessly,
     And on the sudden, fainting with surprise,
Saw two fair Creatures couched side by side,
In deepest grass, beneath the whispering fan
Of leaves and trembled blossoms, where there ran
A Brooklet scarce espied.
In Mid hush’d, cool-rooted flowers, fragrant eyed,
Blue, silver-white, and budded syrian,1
They lay, calm-breathing, on the bedded grass,
Their arms embraced and their pinions too;
Their lips touch’d not, but had not bid adieu,
As if disjoined by soft handed slumber,
And ready still past kisses to out number
At tender dawning eye-dawn of aurorian Love.
The winged Boy I knew:
But who wast thou O happy happy dove?
His Psyche true!

O latest born, and loveliest vision far
     Of all Olympus’ faded Hierarchy!
Fairer than Night’s wide full orb’d Phoebe’s, sapphire-region’d, star
     Or Vesper amorous glow worm of the sky;

  1. “freckle pink” written by Keats in the left margin