HAPPY BIRTHDAY KEATS
Sunday 29 October 1995
The BBC is running a season of programmes and readings on and around the birthday: netheads can download Keats's poems (what all of them? even the long boring ones?) at http://www.cc.columbia.edu/sv12/keats/index.html. Radio 4 has a dramatisation of "The Eve of Saint Agnes", on Sun 29. Radio 3's "The Posthumous Life of John Keats" (Sun 29) looks at the changing reputation of the poet who only sold six copies of "Endymion". On the birthday itself Michael Maloney reads six of the Odes throughout the day on Radio 4, and "The Vale of Soul-Making" focuses on Keats's letters .
All quiet at Keats House in London, but then their celebrations have been carrying on since the Eve of St Agnes itself (21 Jan). The British Library is hosting an exhibition with manuscripts of his best-known poems, letters, paintings and first editions. On National Poetry Day, if you recall, Kates and Yeets stitched up the votes between them with two poems apiece in the Nation's Top Ten, even if the loathsome "If", not so much a poem as a teatowel slogan, finally won.
The British Library, Gt Russell St, WC1. Exhibition open Mon to Sat 10am- 5pm, Sundays 2.30-6pm. Free.
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