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W. B. Yeats : The Last Romantic by W. B.…
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W. B. Yeats : The Last Romantic

by W. B. Yeats

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I’ll start by saying I loved the selection of twelve paintings included in this little book, and how they were paired with Yeats’ poetry. In particular “The Garden of Eden” by Riviere, with that look that says it all, and “Maud Gonne” by Purser, which was interesting given Yeats’ life-long love for Gonne, her multiple rejections of his proposals, and how both ended up in their later years. Some of the poetry included here clearly reflects Gonne, but in addition to “love’s bitter mystery” it touches on Irish nationalism and old age, among other things. It is a little hit and miss for me, but it’s certainly worth sampling Yeats poetry, and small books like this are perfect for that.

My favorites:
The Lake Isle of Innisfree
I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made:
Nine bean-rows will I have there, a hive for the honey-bee,
And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
There midnight’s all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
And evening full of the linnet’s wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.

When You Are Old
When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

And bending down beside the glowing bars,
Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
And paced upon the mountains overhead
And hid his face amid a crowd of stars. ( )
1 vote gbill | Sep 16, 2013 |
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