William Butler Yeats

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

Crazy Jane Talks With The Bishop - Poem by William Butler Yeats

I met the Bishop on the road
And much said he and I.
'Those breasts are flat and fallen now,
Those veins must soon be dry;
Live in a heavenly mansion,
Not in some foul sty.'

'Fair and foul are near of kin,
And fair needs foul,' I cried.
'My friends are gone, but that's a truth
Nor grave nor bed denied,
Learned in bodily lowliness
And in the heart's pride.

'A woman can be proud and stiff
When on love intent;
But Love has pitched his mansion in
The place of excrement;
For nothing can be sole or whole
That has not been rent.'


Comments about Crazy Jane Talks With The Bishop by William Butler Yeats

  • (7/13/2018 7:18:00 PM)


    Those veins must soon be dry;
    Live in a heavenly mansion,
    Not in some foul sty. the sorrow has gain crazy thoughts it nice poem
    (Report) Reply

    0 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • (4/16/2018 9:21:00 PM)


    ASCATAAAAAA Just wow.. (Report) Reply

  • (12/18/2008 2:03:00 PM)


    Rob,

    No, I think Crazy Jane is responding to his admonition that she is getting older and should

    'Live in a heavenly mansion,
    Not in some foul sty.'

    She rejoins that 'foul and fair are near of kin, ' indeed, inextricably related.

    The last two lines are quite vivid, are they not, with plays on both the words 'sole' and 'whole.'
    (Report) Reply

  • (8/16/2006 1:01:00 AM)


    I don't think I really understand this poem. Is everything from 'My friends are gone..' to the the end spoken by the bishop? What do the last two lines mean? (Report) Reply

Read all 4 comments »



Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Read poems about / on: pride, woman, truth, crazy, heart, love, women, friend



Poem Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003



Famous Poems

  1. Phenomenal Woman
    Maya Angelou
  2. Still I Rise
    Maya Angelou
  3. The Road Not Taken
    Robert Frost
  4. If You Forget Me
    Pablo Neruda
  5. Dreams
    Langston Hughes
  6. Annabel Lee
    Edgar Allan Poe
  7. Caged Bird
    Maya Angelou
  8. If
    Rudyard Kipling
  9. Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening
    Robert Frost
  10. Do Not Stand At My Grave And Weep
    Mary Elizabeth Frye
[Report Error]