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Coole Park And Ballylee, 1931 Analysis

Author: poem of William Butler Yeats Type: poem Views: 48

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Under my window-ledge the waters race,

Otters below and moor-hens on the top,

Run for a mile undimmed in Heaven's face

Then darkening through 'dark' Raftery's 'cellar' drop,

Run underground, rise in a rocky place

In Coole demesne, and there to finish up

Spread to a lake and drop into a hole.

What's water but the generated soul?

Upon the border of that lake's a wood

Now all dry sticks under a wintry sun,

And in a copse of beeches there I stood,

For Nature's pulled her tragic buskin on

And all the rant's a mirror of my mood:

At sudden thunder of the mounting swan

I turned about and looked where branches break

The glittering reaches of the flooded lake.

Another emblem there! That stormy white

But seems a concentration of the sky;

And, like the soul, it sails into the sight

And in the morning's gone, no man knows why;

And is so lovely that it sets to right

What knowledge or its lack had set awry,

So atrogantly pure, a child might think

It can be murdered with a spot of ink.

Sound of a stick upon the floor, a sound

From somebody that toils from chair to chair;

Beloved books that famous hands have bound,

Old marble heads, old pictures everywhere;

Great rooms where travelled men and children found

Content or joy; a last inheritor

Where none has reigned that lacked a name and fame

Or out of folly into folly came.

A spot whereon the founders lived and died

Seemed once more dear than life; ancestral trees,

Or gardens rich in memory glorified

Marriages, alliances and families,

And every bride's ambition satisfied.

Where fashion or mere fantasy decrees

We shift about - all that great glory spent -

Like some poor Arab tribesman and his tent.

We were the last romantics - chose for theme

Traditional sanctity and loveliness;

Whatever's written in what poets name

The book of the people; whatever most can bless

The mind of man or elevate a rhyme;

But all is changed, that high horse riderless,

Though mounted in that saddle Homer rode

Where the swan drifts upon a darkening flood.


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