Thursday, 1 August 2013

John Keats Endymion

George Frederick Watts Endymion 1872

Lowry quotes from Keat's poem Endymion during Dana's drunken drift around Dairen in the novel Ultramarine; "Ah sorrow who dost borrow the lustrous passion from a falcon's eye," (Pg.116).

Endymion is a poem by John Keats first published in 1818. It begins with the line "A thing of beauty is a joy for ever". Endymion is written in rhyming couplets in iambic pentameter (also known as heroic couplets). Keats based the poem on the Greek myth of Endymion, the shepherd beloved by the moon goddess Selene. The poem elaborates on the original story and renames Selene "Cynthia" Read more on Wikipedia

Keat's poem may have appealed to Lowry as in the poem  Endymion ventures into the underworld in search of his love corresponding to Dana's search for love in Dairen. Lowry would also have been aware of the coincidence in the name Cynthia being both the name of Endymion's lover but also the name of the woman lusted after by Demerest in Aiken's novel Blue Voyage.

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