Tuesday, June 7, 2011

in the deep heart's core

William Butler Yeats wrote The Lake Isle of Innisfree in 1895.  He was in London, pavements all around, when he heard the sound of water lapping in a fountain and thought of his boyhood/ island/ the sea.  Here is his poem.  Here also is a link to Yeats himself reciting the poem:  http://www.poets.org/viewmedia.php/prmMID/15529  .

I will arise and go now, and go to Innisfree,
  And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made;
Nine bean rows will I have there, a hive for the honey bee,
  And live alone in the bee-loud glade.

And I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
  Dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
There midnight's all a glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
  And evening full of the linnet's wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
  I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements gray,
  I hear it in the deep heart's core.

Often I call upon this poem and say some lines and, hearing the words, I am calmed.  This past two weeks I have been in two great cities, Chicago and Boston.  There, amid great strength and beauty; still, Yeats's poem has wafted to me at times, clearly, with music, with magic.

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