Thursday, August 22, 2013

And Yeats's version of Ronsard.

When You are Old

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 mountain overhead
And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.

— A free paraphrase by W.B. Yeats
in his 1893 collection The Rose.

I'm a bit of a Yeats fan too.  See last week's post for an explanation.


Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Anne .. lovely words - I can see the description of the man or woman ... reminding me sadly that I wasn't able to give my uncle as much time as I should ... my mother came first: difficult, but I can see him here ...

Cheers and thanks for a great paraphrase .. Hilary

John Gray said...

I have never read this before
I loved it