Sarah Irving

I do things with words, mainly English and Arabic

WB Yeats/The Second Coming

Today has been One Of Those Days. I will not be boring anyone with why – the internet is cluttered up with quite enough white middle-class angst already. Instead, for various reasons and resonances, here is WB Yeats’ amazing poem, The Second Coming:

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.

The darkness drops again but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

Jerusalem - Holy Sepulchre - Candles

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This entry was posted on February 16, 2013 by in Politics and tagged , , , .
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