William Butler Yeats

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

Tom O'Roughley


'THOUGH logic-choppers rule the town,
And every man and maid and boy
Has marked a distant object down,
An aimless joy is a pure joy,'
Or so did Tom O'Roughley say
That saw the surges running by.
'And wisdom is a butterfly
And not a gloomy bird of prey.
'If little planned is little sinned
But little need the grave distress.
What's dying but a second wind?
How but in zig-zag wantonness
Could trumpeter Michael be so brave?'
Or something of that sort he said,
'And if my dearest friend were dead
I'd dance a measure on his grave.'

Submitted: Thursday, May 17, 2001

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  • Ross Tirapelle (11/25/2009 8:55:00 PM)

    It's wonderful! I mean I don't get it but I really like it! Logic-choppers rule the town... Good old Tom O'Roughley, dancing a measure on a dead friend's grave... It's fantastic. (Report) Reply

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