Death Poems - Poems For Death - An Irish Airman Forsees His Death

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An Irish Airman Forsees His Death - Poem by William Butler Yeats

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 county is Kiltartan Cross,
My countrymen Kiltartan's poor,
No likely end could bring them loss
Or leave them happier than before.
Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,
Nor public men, nor cheering crowds,
A lonely impulse of delight
Drove to this tumult in the clouds;
I balanced all, brought all to mind,
The years to come seemed waste of breath,
A waste of breath the years behind
In balance with this life, this death.


Comments about An Irish Airman Forsees His Death by William Butler Yeats

  • Rookie - 120 Points Jay Blue (1/25/2016 11:17:00 PM)

    Something about this haunts me. The imagery, yes, but the phrasing steals the show. Incredible verse! (Report) Reply

    2 person liked.
    0 person did not like.
  • Gold Star - 6,241 Points Soumita Sarkar (1/2/2016 6:22:00 AM)

    excellence.... at the height. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Des Drumm (12/16/2013 11:50:00 AM)

    This poem has grown on me hugely over the years since my father died. He was from the Republic of Ireland and volunteered for Bomber Command in World War 2, where he flew 32 missions as a rear gunner in Lancasters. This poem has really made me think about his motivations and how he must have felt at night in the skies over Germany. Unfortunately he died 14 years ago so I will never know, since he never spoke much about it and we did not ask enough of the questions while he was alive. Whenever I read the poem it brings back a lot of memories! (Report) Reply

Read all 10 comments »

Poems About Death

  1. 1. Let Me Die A Youngman's Death , Roger McGough
  2. 2. And Death Shall Have No Dominion , Dylan Thomas
  3. 3. Death Be Not Proud , John Donne
  4. 4. Death Is Nothing At All , Henry Scott Holland
  5. 5. Because I Could Not Stop For Death , Emily Dickinson
  6. 6. A Refusal To Mourn The Death, By Fire, O.. , Dylan Thomas
  7. 7. Nothing But Death , Pablo Neruda
  8. 8. Father Death Blues , Allen Ginsberg
  9. 9. A Dream Of Death , William Butler Yeats
  10. 10. A Poet's Death Is His Life Iv , Khalil Gibran
  11. 11. A Death Blow Is A Life Blow To Some , Emily Dickinson
  12. 12. An Irish Airman Forsees His Death , William Butler Yeats
  13. 13. The Death Of The Ball Turret Gunner , Randall Jarrell
  14. 14. Death Wants More Death , Charles Bukowski
  15. 15. Death Xxvii , Khalil Gibran
  16. 16. The Beauty Of Death Xiv , Khalil Gibran
  17. 17. After Death , Sara Teasdale
  18. 18. Death Leaves Us Homesick, Who Behind , Emily Dickinson
  19. 19. A City's Death By Fire , Derek Walcott
  20. 20. A Funeral Poem On The Death Of C. E. An .. , Phillis Wheatley
  21. 21. Death , Rainer Maria Rilke
  22. 22. A Ballad Of Death , Algernon Charles Swinburne
  23. 23. First Death In Nova Scotia , Elizabeth Bishop
  24. 24. On The Death Of A Young Lady Of Five Yea.. , Phillis Wheatley
  25. 25. The Death Of Joy Gardner , Benjamin Zephaniah
  26. 26. A Thought For A Lonely Death-Bed , Elizabeth Barrett Browning
  27. 27. Death &Amp; Fame , Allen Ginsberg
  28. 28. I Have A Rendezvous With Death , Alan Seeger
  29. 29. Go Down, Death , James Weldon Johnson
  30. 30. On The Death Of That Most Excellent Lady, , Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz
  31. 31. Gacela Of The Dark Death , Federico García Lorca
  32. 32. On Death , Anne Killigrew
  33. 33. On The Death Of Anne Brontë , Charlotte Brontë
  34. 34. For The Anniversary Of My Death , William Stanley Merwin
  35. 35. If Death Is Kind , Sara Teasdale
  36. 36. The Death Of The Hired Man , Robert Frost
  37. 37. Death Fugue , Paul Celan
  38. 38. Love &Amp; Fame &Amp; Death , Charles Bukowski
  39. 39. Death , Heinrich Heine
  40. 40. As At Thy Portals Also Death , Walt Whitman
  41. 41. All But Death, Can Be Adjusted , Emily Dickinson
  42. 42. On Hearing Of A Death , Rainer Maria Rilke
  43. 43. Death , William Butler Yeats
  44. 44. A Death-Bed , Rudyard Kipling
  45. 45. Fugue Of Death , Paul Celan
  46. 46. Death And His Brother Sleep (‘morphine’) , Heinrich Heine
  47. 47. Holy Sonnet X: Death Be Not Proud , John Donne
  48. 48. Death Of A Cockroach , Robert William Service
  49. 49. Hymns To The Night : 6 : Longing For Death , Novalis
  50. 50. The Death Of The Flowers , William Cullen Bryant
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