William Butler Yeats

1865 - 1939

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on beauty, grace, love, and soul

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.

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: The Rose, 1893. When You Are Old, st. 2

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on age, dance, lust, and songs

You think it horrible that lust and rage Should dance attention upon my old age; They were not such a plague when I was young; What else have I to spur me into song?

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: Last Poems, 1936–1939, The Spur

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats

Do not wait to strike till the iron is hot; but make it hot by striking.

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on truth

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Man can embody truth but he cannot know it.

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: Letter (4 January 1939)

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on charm and mountains

One had a lovely face, And two or three had charm, But charm and face were in vain. Because the mountain grass Cannot keep the form Where the mountain hare has lain.

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: "Memory"

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on mind and silence

Like a long-legged fly upon the stream His mind moves upon silence.

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: Last Poems, 1936–1939, long-Legged fly, refrain

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on good

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Mock mockers after that That would not lift a hand maybe To help good, wise or great To bar that foul storm out, for we Traffic in mockery.

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: The Tower, 1928. Nineteen Hundred and Nineteen

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on gold, nature, and past

Once out of nature I shall never take My bodily form from any natural thing, But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make Of hammered gold and gold enameling To keep a drowsy Emperor awake; Or set upon a golden bough to sing To lords and ladies of Byzantium Of what is past, or passing, or to come.

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: The Tower, 1928. Sailing to Byzantium

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on darkness, force, life, perfection, and work

The intellect of man is forced to choose Perfection of the life, or of the work, And if it take the second must refuse A heavenly mansion, raging in the dark.

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: The Winding Stair and Other Poems, 1933;. The Choice

Contributed by: Zaady

A Quote by William Butler Yeats on anger, good, hatred, mind, quiet, understanding, and women

An intellectual hatred is the worst, So let her think opinions are accursed. Have I not seen the loveliest woman born Out of the mouth of Plenty's horn, Because of her opinionated mind Barter that horn and every good By quiet natures understood For an old bellows full of angry wind?

William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)

Source: Michael Robartes and the Dancer , 1921. A Prayer for My Daughter

Contributed by: Zaady

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