We’re excited to announce the release of our October Solo, “Footing Slow: A Walk With Keats” by Eli Mandel. In 2013, Mandel decided to recreate the 642-mile trek that John Keats completed in the summer of 1818, hoping to learn more about the famous poet who died at the age of twenty-five. As Mandel matches his “ghostly companion’s” journey step-for-step, the moments of discovery turn inward and Mandel is forced to face his own ghosts.
Read “Footing Slow” today for $2.99!
Here’s an excerpt from the Solo:
I have no idea when I first learned of Keats’s trip. I don’t even remember where I would have discovered it. But I do remember reading “Ode on a Grecian Urn” (written less than a year after Keats’s walk) for the first time, one rainy afternoon in the spring of my senior year of high school. Like one of its well-wrought lovers, “for ever panting, for ever young,” I still feel arrested in that moment, frozen in the thrill of the urn. A poem could do that? And what was that exactly? The poem was a bottomless basin filled with perfectly clear water. Keats became a guide that afternoon. I looked for him to initiation into the mysteries of his art.
About the Author
Eli Mandel grew up in Brooklyn, NY and studied English at Yale College. His poems, essays, and translations have appeared in The Harvard Review, The Paris Review Daily, The Saint Ann’s Review, Prodigal, and elsewhere. In 2014–15, he held the Frederick M. Clapp Fellowship in Poetry from Yale. In the fall of 2016, he began a PhD in English at Princeton University.