Ode to John Keats

by Mylene Almeida October 31, 2015 0 Comments

Portrait of John Keats by William Hilton. National Portrait Gallery, London

For me, ranking poets is an exercise in futility. Though I have none, I suppose it is akin to a mother ranking her children. Poetry is so personal, rendered so apt and full of vivacity by our own experiences, that I find it painful to go through any list attempting to place one author above the other purely on language and semantics. Because poetry is so much more than that…

But if you forced my hand and gave me no other option but to pick one, I would say that John Keats is the greatest poet that has ever lived. I often wonder: what wondrous imagery would we be exposed to today if he had lived an entire life (rather than passing away at 25), if the eventual suffering that life brings about had the opportunity to mature his senses…and his pen.

Keats short life was marked by suffering, by pain, opium, and confusion. Undoubtedly, this is the primary reason for his poetic greatness. Poetry is, after all, the suffering of the world distilled into images and thoughts. Battling the self, however, he was still able to produce masterpieces such as Ode To A Nightingale and On First Looking Into Chapman’s Homer. Like Beethoven producing his 9th Symphony when the world around him grew silent, Keats overcame the sense of desperation that imminent death brings about to spew unto the page all that made him human. When any of his works lie open in front of me, tranquil and unassuming on the page, I can’t help but to look at it “in a while surmise” and to feel “like some watcher of the skies when a new planet swims into his ken”.

Here’s a toast to everything he was and everything he could have been. Thou was not born for death, immortal [Man]!

Mylene Almeida
Mylene Almeida


Sizing Chart
Literary T-shirt Sizing Chart

Chest (A) 30.5 in
32.5 in
82.5 cm
34.5 in
87.6 cm
36.5 in
92.7 cm
39.5 in
100.3 cm
42.5 in
108 cm
Length (B) 24.75 in
63 cm
25.5 in
64.8 cm
26 in
66 cm
26.5 in
67.3 cm
27.25 in
69.2 cm
28 in
71.1 cm

Chest (C) 38 in
96.5 cm
41 in
104.1 cm
44 in
111.8 cm
48 in
121.9 cm
52 in
132.1 cm
56 in
142.2 cm
Length (D) 28 in
71.1 cm
29 in
73.6 cm
30 in
76.2 cm
31 in
78.7 cm
32 in
81.3 cm
33 in
83.8 cm

Chest (E) 37 in
94 cm
40 in
101.6 cm
43 in
109.2 cm
47 in
119.4 cm
51 in
129.5 cm
Length (F) 28 in
71.1 cm
29 in
73.6 cm
30 in
76.2 cm
31 in
78.7 cm
32 in
81.3 cm
Sleeve Length 26.0in
66 cm
67.3 cm
27.0 in
68.6 cm
27.5 in
70 cm
28 in
71.1 cm

Measurement Notes:
Chest is measured 1" below armhole.
Body length in the front from highest point of shoulder.
Sleeve length from shoulder edge