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A Short Analysis of John Keats’s ‘You Say You Love’

On one of Keats’s less famous poems about unrequited love

‘O love me truly!’ as a poetic refrain is likely to inspire disgust at the poet’s desperation rather than sympathy, but then desperation can be dangerously close to despair, and John Keats (1795-1821) knew better than most what it felt like to experience the pain of hopeless love. In his short and little-known poem ‘You Say You Love’, Keats addresses a woman who doesn’t return his love.

I.

You say you love; but with a voice
Chaster than a nun’s, who singeth
The soft Vespers to herself
While the chime-bell ringeth –
O love me truly!

II.

You say you love; but with a smile
Cold as sunrise in September, Read the rest of this entry

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