New poem! New poem!

New poem! New poem! August 8, 2010

There are some poets who will never be kindred spirits and whose poems are usually far beyond my aesthetic yum-sensors. William Butler Yeats is that way. I took a course on him in grad school, the fall of 2002. I learned that he was a genius. That he did remarkable things with form. And every so often, I read one of his poems that stunned me with its beauty.

I never returned to Yeats after that class, despite my new appreciation for him. That’s probably because though I respected him, he remained a non-kindred. His poems rarely moved me. But I recently came across The Song of Wandering Aengus again and I was surprised at how I love its imagery and its rhythm. I love the cadence. I love the silver and the gold. I love the delicate storytelling. I love the apples. Maybe if I love the poem enough, I’ll start caring a bit more for the poet.

So, welcome to your poem for the month of August, friends.

The Song of Wandering Aengus

I went out to the hazel wood,
Because a fire was in my head,
And cut and peeled a hazel wand,
And hooked a berry to a thread;
And when white moths were on the wing,
And moth-like stars were flickering out,
I dropped the berry in a stream
And caught a little silver trout.

When I had laid it on the floor
I went to blow the fire aflame,
But something rustled on the floor,
And someone called me by my name:
It had become a glimmering girl
With apple blossom in her hair
Who called me by my name and ran
And faded through the brightening air.

Though I am old and wandering
Through hallow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
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.

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