Great Throughts Treasury

A database of quotes

William Butler Yeats

Irish Poet, Playwright

"All his happier dreams came true."

"All his twenties crammed with toil."

"All perform their tragic play, there struts Hamlet, there is Lear, that?s Ophelia, that Cordelia."

"All that?s beautiful drifts away."

"All shuffle there; all cough in ink; all wear the carpet with their shoes; all think what other people think; all know the man their neighbor knows. Lord, what would they say did their Catullus walk that way?"

"All teeth were drawn, all ancient tricks unlearned, and a great army but a showy thing; what matter that no cannon had been turned into a ploughshare?"

"All the great masters have understood that there cannot be great art without the little limited life of the fable, which is always better the simpler it is, and the rich, far-wandering, many-imaged life of the half-seen world beyond it"

"All women dote upon an idle man although their children need a rich estate. No man has ever lived that had enough of children?s gratitude or woman?s love."

"All things uncomely and broken, all things worn out and old The cry of a child by the roadway, the creak of a lumbering cart, The heavy steps of the plowman, splashing the wintry mold, Are wronging your image that blossoms a rose in the deeps of my heart."

"Amid men?s souls, that waiver and give place?"

"All the wild-witches, those most notable ladies for all their broom-sticks and their tears, their angry tears, are gone."

"Amid the cloudy wrack?"

"An aged man is but a paltry thing, A tattered coat upon a stick, unless Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing For every tatter in its mortal dress."

"An agony of trance?"

"An agony of flame that cannot singe a sleeve."

"Among her wildering whirls, forgetting him."

"An idle word is now their glory."

"An old man's eagle mind."

"And a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made."

"An Irish Airman foresees his Death. I Know that I shall meet my fate somewhere among the clouds above; those that I fight I do not hate those that I guard I do not love, my country is Kiltartan Cross, my countrymen Kiltartan?s poor, no likely end could bring them loss"

"And all around the harp-string told his praise."

"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?"

"And all complexities of fury leave."

"And all disheveled wandering stars."

"And all their eyes still fixed, hoping to find once more."

"And all the sheaves to bind."

"And all that famous harmony of leaves."

"And chaunted for three days."

"And bids my hair stand up?"

"And bid them wander obeying your will."

"And bending down beside the glowing bars."

"And be like a string, in a frenzy."

"And all their helms of silver hovering side by side."

"And Conchubar, the Red Branch king of kings."

"And die a pearly brotherhood."

"And dead is all their human truth."

"And evening full of the linnet's wings."

"And gather all the talk?"

"And his young sweetheart close beside him knelt."

"And God stands winding His lonely horn, and time and the world are ever in flight; and love is less kind than the grey twilight, and hope is less dear than the dew of the morn."

"And faded through the brightening air."

"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."

"And I speak a barbarous tongue."

"And I would please the hapless faun."

"And I grew weary of the sun."

"And live alone in the bee loud glade."

"And I may dine at journey's end with Landor and with Donne."

"And lo! My ancient burden may depart."

"And loved the sorrows of your changing face."

"And love is less kind than the gray twilight,"