"When I Have Fears That I May Cease To Be"

John Keats


When I have fears that I may cease to be

Before my pen has gleaned my teeming brain,

Before high-piled books in charactery,

Hold like rich garners the full-ripened grain;

When I behold, upon the night's starred face,

Huge cloudy symbols of a high romance,

And think that I may never live to trace

Their shadows with the magic hand of chance;

And when I feel, fair creature of an hour,

That I shall never look upon thee more,

Never have relish in the fairy power

Of unreflecting love; then on the shore

Of the wide world I stand alone and think

Till love and fame to nothingness do sink