Speech after long silence; it is right, All other lovers being estranged or dead . . . That we descant and yet again descant Upon the supreme theme of Art and Song: Bodily decrepitude is wisdom; young We loved each other and were ignorant.
William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939)
Source: The Winding Stair and Other Poems, 1933;. After Long Silence
I see my life go drifting like a river From change to change; I have been many things - A green drop in the surge, a gleam of light Upon a sword, a fir tree on a hill, An old slave grinding at a heavy quern, A king sitting upon a chair of gold - And all these things were wonderful and great; But now I have grown nothing, knowing all. Ah! Druid, Druid, how great webs of sorrow Lay hidden in that small slate-coloured thing!