I Say To You: Ut Pictura Poesis


Pictures in Poetry: Keats's "Ode on a Grecian Urn", Brann

Literary Criticism--EL312

Do you know those folks who are in a museum looking at a painting...giving it appreciation. Ode on a Grecian Urn should be appreciated the same way. Brann described that it comes to an end when imitation, mimesis, no longer drives either the visual or poetic arts. It is not "the Urn" itself that makes the poem mimetic, but it is the fact that people are appreciating it as they would a painting in Harlan Gallery. It is more of the description that is more in tune with reality...at least that is what I think. So riddle me this faithful readers...

Do you think that the reaction to the urn or the urn itself makes the poem mimetic to reality?


I think that the reaction to the urn makes the poem mimetic. It is the reaction to reality that we see when reading the poem. The urn has already made some kind of impact on the speaker otherwise why would he or she sit down and write the poem. I think that the reaction is what makes the poem real becuase the reaction is the actually imitation.

I hope that you followed that. Great question Kevin!

I think that the reaction to the urn makes the poem mimetic as well. The way we react to the urn could in turn the actual imitation of reality. The significance of the urn makes a impact on the audience that allows for a reader-response that leads to the analysis of how this is relavant to the reality of the world.