In Keats “Ode to a Nightingale” and Shelleys “Ode to the West Wind” both poets show much inspiration within their poetry. The bird in “Ode to a Nightingale” represents a supernatural being conjured up by the speaker. The wind in “Ode to the West Wind” inspires the speaker while serving as a “destroyer and preserver.”
In the poem, “Ode to a Nightingale” the reader sees that the poet draws his inspiration through hemlock which the poet had drunk and some kind of opiate. The poet speaks about dying from the consumption of some type of poisonous drink in stanza two. The speaker wants to, “Fade far away, dissolve, and quite forget / What thou among the leaves has never known (21-22).” He doesnt seem to have much respect for or admiration of the world. The speaker cites all of the bad aspects of life and the world which inspire him to contemplate suicide. This idea of death and suicide is further displayed through the quote in stanza six :
” I have been half in love with easeful Death,
Now more than ever seems it rich to die,
To cease upon the midnight with no pain,
While thou art pouring forth thy soul abroad
In such an ecstasy (52-58).”
The readers contemplation of suicide is thoroughly depicted through this quote. The reader is actually thinking these thoughts because he realizes that the beautiful birds songs only occur through death because the bird is immortal and with the immortal bird comes the immortal song. He shows his admiration for the bird when he speaks of the birds past experiences. He is greatly inspired by the bird and this is the reason for this poem, but in the last stanza he returns to reality and back to his “sole self”. He no longer wants to die and hear this immortal song sung by the bird which he once longed to experience.
In Ode to the West Wind, the reader sees yet another poet inspired by something that has caught the speakers attention.
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