Few poets produced more great poetry at an earlier age than John Keats.
This is possibly the saddest poem I have ever read.
“There is an ancient myth in this feature, that of the ‘true language’, the tongue in which there is a thing for each word and a word for each thing, and in which signifier then naturally has power over signified.”
You would have to have a hard heart indeed not to feel pity for Clare and to hear the utter truth, sincerity and pathos of ‘I Am”.
These lines are a heroic quatrain in more than one sense. Such pure stoicism is rare in English.