Keats and the Hampstead and Highgate Festival

This is the last day of National Poetry Month. Although this month is an American invention, here’s a poet whose influence on American poets is unquestioned, and whose former home is now a museum and poetry center. John Keats lived in this elegant house from 1818 to 1820. Back then the house was actually two houses that were later joined together.

Keats wrote several of his most famous poems here maybe because of his love for the girl next door. Fanny Brawne and Keats were supposed to marry, though theirs is a sad tale of romance cut short by illness. Keats had tuberculosis, not the best affliction to have when living in London. He headed to Italy and died there at age 25 without ever seeing Fanny again.

The Keats House Museum is in the London suburb of Hampstead. From May 9-19, the Keats House Museum is part of the Hampstead and Highgate Festival that includes concerts and community arts events.

The first four lines of Keats’ poem, “The four seasons”

” FOUR Seasons fill the measure of the year;
There are four seasons in the mind of man:
He has his lusty Spring, when fancy clear
Takes in all beauty with an easy span. . .”