Treasure Island

William Butler Yeats

(13 June 1865 – 28 January 1939 / County Dublin / Ireland)

A First Confession


I admit the briar
Entangled in my hair
Did not injure me;
My blenching and trembling,
Nothing but dissembling,
Nothing but coquetry.

I long for truth, and yet
I cannot stay from that
My better self disowns,
For a man's attention
Brings such satisfaction
To the craving in my bones.

Brightness that I pull back
From the Zodiac,
Why those questioning eyes
That are fixed upon me?
What can they do but shun me
If empty night replies?

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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Comments about this poem (A First Confession by William Butler Yeats )

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  • * Sunprincess * (11/15/2013 6:20:00 PM)

    a nicely written confession...would love to have read a few more stanza's of this intriguing poem :) (Report) Reply

  • Clorissa Lepe (11/29/2012 2:10:00 AM)

    How he speaks with such honesty and yet such grace. His confessions and admittances are always to universal and timeless. How we betray ourselves for want of attention. (Report) Reply

  • Clorissa Lepe (11/29/2012 2:07:00 AM)

    How he speaks with such honesty and yet such grace. His confessions and admittances are always to universal and timeless. How we betray ourselves for want of attention. (Report) Reply

  • Clorissa Lepe (11/29/2012 2:06:00 AM)

    How he speaks with such honesty and yet such grace. His confessions and admittances are always to universal and timeless. How we betray ourselves for want of attention. (Report) Reply

  • William Rodenberg (6/22/2009 10:42:00 PM)

    how true. the thirst for attention does lead to the unintentional desertion of rational doings. how clever and emotionally complex this man was. how i yearn to write as he does (Report) Reply

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