Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


Lamia [Left to herself]

     Left to herself, the serpent now began  
To change; her elfin blood in madness ran,  
Her mouth foam'd, and the grass, therewith besprent,  
Wither'd at dew so sweet and virulent;  
Her eyes in torture fix'd, and anguish drear,
Hot, glaz'd, and wide, with lid-lashes all sear,  
Flash'd phosphor and sharp sparks, without one cooling tear.  
The colours all inflam'd throughout her train,  
She writh'd about, convuls'd with scarlet pain:  
A deep volcanian yellow took the place 
Of all her milder-mooned body's grace;  
And, as the lava ravishes the mead,  
Spoilt all her silver mail, and golden brede;  
Made gloom of all her frecklings, streaks and bars,  
Eclips'd her crescents, and lick'd up her stars:
So that, in moments few, she was undrest  
Of all her sapphires, greens, and amethyst,  
And rubious-argent: of all these bereft,  
Nothing but pain and ugliness were left.

Credit


This poem is in the public domain.

Author


John Keats

Born in 1795, John Keats was an English Romantic poet and author of three poems considered to be among the finest in the English language

Date Published: 1820-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/lamia-left-herself