W.B. Yeats ~ 149 Years On

Rosa 'Fellowship'

William Butler Yeats was born on June 13th, 1865 and I can’t let this day go by without honouring the man whose poetry is fundamentally knitted into my everyday life.

I have no idea if other people have a poet whose words, lines and poems are so deeply embedded that they automatically spring forth like as if  predictive thought was somehow switched on.

I just have to glimpse the sun or the moon and it’s:

And walk among long dappled grass,

And pluck till time and times are done

The silver apples of the moon,

The golden apples of the sun.

(from The Song of Wandering Aengus by W.B. Yeats)

October, which is my birth month, always, always, always evokes thoughts of  The Wild Swans at Coole:

‘The trees are in their autumn beauty,
The woodland paths are dry,
Under the October twilight the water
Mirrors a still sky;
Upon the brimming water among the stones
Are nine-and-fifty swans….

When I’m waiting for a response to something that’s important to me, WB is invariably there whispering:

Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

And he’s the one who knows everything about:

But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you.

How often I look at loved ones who are frazzled, overwrought, over-working and know that Yeats’, like me, would bid them:

… take life easy, as the grass grows on the weirs

And, with mind-blowing  interconnections and intertwinings emerging all the time, I tend to refer back to Yeats’ great final line of Among School Children:

How can we know the dancer from the dance?

So many great lines, comforting words, evocative poems and sheer resonance!  W.B. Yeats, how glad I am that I live at a time when I’ve had the chance to bathe and soak in your tapestry of poetic genius.

W.B. Yeats
W.B. Yeats





Celebrating W.B.Yeats ~ Gatherings from Ireland # 164

Bridge beside Thoor Ballylee,
Bridge beside W.B. Yeats’ Thoor Ballylee, Co. Galway

W.B. Yeats has been on my mind all day as he was born on June 13 in 1865.  As evening started to descend, I found myself thinking more and more about him and all sorts of lines from his poems came floating into my head.

Even though W.B. Yeats has been with me all my life, he took on a whole new significance in 1999 when my son was four. It was then that I introduced him to Yeats’ poetry and bedtime reading always ended with a few of his real favourites.  I always kept one poem until last, knowing that I would see his sleepy eyes close beneath his golden curls just as I reached the last two lines.

Aedh Wishes For The Cloths Of Heaven

HAD I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams. 

William Butler Yeats