Was Yeats Prescient?

Somehow this poem, The Second Coming by WB Yeats, seems especially prescient. The first stanza seems especially poignant and appropriate to me.

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?


  1. ‘things fall apart’…friggin magnificent.

  2. reminds me of another Irish poet:

    And you know its time to go
    Through the sleet and driving snow
    Across the fields of mourning
    Light in the distance

    And you hunger for the time
    Time to heal, desire, time
    And your earth moves beneath
    Your own dream landscape

    Oh, oh, oh…
    On borderland we run…

    Ill be there
    Ill be there…
    A high road
    A high road out from here

    The city walls are all come down
    The dust, a smoke screen all around
    See faces ploughed like fields that once
    Gave no resistance

    And we live by the side of the road
    On the side of a hill
    As the valley explode
    Dislocated, suffocated
    The land grows weary of its own

    Oh, oh, oh…on borderland we run…
    And still we run
    We run and dont look back
    Ill be there
    Ill be there

    Ill be there tonight…i believe
    Ill be there…somehow
    Ill be there…tonight

    The wind will crack in winter time
    This bomb-blast lightning waltz
    No spoken words, just a scream…

    Tonight well build a bridge
    Across the sea and land
    See the sky, the burning rain
    She will die and live again

    And your heart beats so slow
    Through the rain and fallen snow
    Across the fields of mourning
    Lights in the distance

    Oh dont sorrow, no dont weep
    For tonight, at last
    I am coming home
    I am coming home

  3. Chuck, my brother said the same thing!

Speak Your Mind


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.