The Fiddler of Dooney Poem by William Butler Yeats

William Butler Yeats (13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939) was an Irish poet. This post features The Fiddler of Dooney Poem by William Butler Yeats.

The Fiddler of Dooney Poem by William Butler Yeats was written in 1899. Immortalised in the poem, Dooney Rock is a small hill overlooking Lough Gill in County Sligo. The rock is located just outside Sligo itself. The prestigious instrumental competition held in Sligo and known at the Fiddler of Dooney Competition is also named after the poem.

Yeats was a driving force behind the Irish Literary Revival and, along with Lady Gregory, Edward Martyn, and others, founded the Abbey Theatre, where he served as its chief during its early years. In 1923, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. The prize led to a significant increase in the sales of his books, as his publishers Macmillan sought to capitalise on the publicity. For the first time he had money, and he was able to repay not only his own debts, but those of his father.

The Fiddler of Dooney Poem by William Butler Yeats
The Fiddler of Dooney Poem by William Butler Yeats

The Fiddler of Dooney Poem

When I play on my fiddle in Dooney
Folk dance like a wave of the sea
My cousin is priest in Kilvarnet
My brother in Moharabuiee

I passed my brother and cousin:
They read in their books of prayer;
I read in my book of songs
I bought at the Sligo fair.

When we come at the end of time,
To Peter sitting in state,
He will smile on the three old spirits,
But call me first through the gate;

For the good are always the merry,
Save by an evil chance,
And the merry love the fiddle
And the merry love to dance:

And when the folk there spy me,
They will all come up to me,
With ‘Here is the fiddler of Dooney!’
And dance like a wave of the sea.

– William Butler Yeats

When you are old Poem by William Butler Yeats

William Butler Yeats (13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939) was an Irish poet. This post features When you are old Poem by William Butler Yeats.

In 1923, Yeats was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. The prize led to a significant increase in the sales of his books, as his publishers Macmillan sought to capitalize on the publicity. For the first time he had money, and he was able to repay not only his own debts, but those of his father.

Yeats is generally considered one of the few writers who completed their greatest works after being awarded the Nobel Prize; such works include The Tower (1928) and The Winding Stair and Other Poems (1929).

William Butler Yeats largely renounced the transcendental beliefs of his youth, though he remained preoccupied with physical and spiritual masks, as well as with cyclical theories of life. From 1900, Yeats’s poetry grew more physical and realistic. Yeats had a life-long interest in mysticism, spiritualism, occultism and astrology. He read extensively on the subjects throughout his life, became a member of the paranormal research organization “The Ghost Club” (in 1911) and was especially influenced by the writings of Emanuel Swedenborg.

When you are old Poem by William Butler Yeats
When you are old Poem by William Butler Yeats

When you are old Poem

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.

– William Butler Yeats

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Swift’s Epitaph Poem by William Butler Yeats

William Butler Yeats (13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939) was an Irish poet. This post features Swift’s Epitaph Poem by William Butler Yeats.

Swift’s Epitaph Poem by William Butler Yeats is a translation of Jonathan Swift’s epitaph, which Swift wrote for himself in Latin. Yeats’ somewhat free translation appeared in his 1933 collection The Winding Stair and Other Poems.

William Butler Yeats was one of the foremost figures of 20th-century literature. A pillar of both the Irish and British literary establishments, in his later years he served as an Irish Senator for two terms. Yeats was a driving force behind the Irish Literary Revival and, along with Lady Gregory, Edward Martyn, and others, founded the Abbey Theatre, where he served as its chief during its early years.

In 1923, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature. The prize led to a significant increase in the sales of his books, as his publishers Macmillan sought to capitalise on the publicity. For the first time he had money, and he was able to repay not only his own debts, but those of his father.

Swift’s Epitaph Poem by William Butler Yeats
Swift’s Epitaph Poem by William Butler Yeats

Swift’s Epitaph Poem

Swift has sailed into his rest;
Savage indignation there
Cannot lacerate his breast.
Imitate him if you dare,
World-besotted traveller; he
Served human liberty.

– William Butler Yeats

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