End Rhyme:

The version of the poem below uses color to indicate the regular use of rhyming words at the ends of lines. One case to notice is in the second stanza, where "peonies" [pronounced "pee-oh-neez"] is used to rhyme with "eyes." This is an instance of what is called slant rhyme (sometimes also called eye rhyme), where the two words do not rhyme perfectly (usually the discrepancy is in the vowel sound). Internal rhyme happens when two words in a poem rhyme, but at least one is not located at the end of a line.

Rhyme Scheme:

At the edge of each line, a letter is given that corresponds to the rhyming sound of the line's final word. The pattern of letters, as you follow them down the edge of the page, is called the rhyme scheme of the poem. Rhyme schemes, especially ones that repeat (as this one does), are often written in the following form: a b a b c d e c d e. From looking at this, a person can see that the poem has regular rhyme, and consists of ten-line stanzas. Slant rhymes (see above for definition) are denoted by a slash (/) in front of the letter.




 

Ode On Melancholy

John Keats

 

No, no, go not to Lethe, neither twist

A

aWolfs-bane, tight-rooted, for its poisonous wine;

B

Nor suffer thy pale forehead to be kiss'd

A

aBy nightshade, ruby grape of Proserpine;

B

Make not your rosary of yew-berries,

C

aNor let the beetle, nor the death-moth be

D

aaYour mournful Psyche, nor the downy owl

E

A partner in your sorrow's mysteries;

C

aFor shade to shade will come too drowsily,

D

aaAnd drown the wakeful anguish of the soul.

/E [slant rhyme]

 

But when the melancholy fit shall fall

 

F

aSudden from heaven like a weeping cloud,

G

That fosters the droop-headed flowers all,

F

aAnd hides the green hill in an April shroud;

G

Then glut thy sorrow on a morning rose,

H

aOr on the rainbow of the salt sand-wave,

I

aaOr on the wealth of globed peonies;

J

Or if thy mistress some rich anger shows,

H

aEmprison her soft hand, and let her rave,

I

aaAnd feed deep, deep upon her peerless eyes.

/J [slant rhyme]

 

She dwells with Beauty--Beauty that must die;

 

K

aAnd Joy, whose hand is ever at his lips

L

Bidding adieu; and aching Pleasure nigh,

K

aTurning to poison while the bee-mouth sips:

L

Ay, in the very temple of Delight

M

aVeil'd Melancholy has her sovran shrine,

N

aaThough seen of none save him whose strenuous tongue

O

Can burst Joy's grape against his palate fine;

N

aHis soul shall taste the sadness of her might,

M

aaAnd be among her cloudy trophies hung.

O [note also the internal rhyme of "among" and "hung" in this line]

 

More about how this poem is constructed can be found below:

Figures of speech: simile, personification

Sound devices: alliteration, assonance, consonance

 Go back to the first page.