TWO LOVE POEMS
THE SHADOWY HORSES
I HEAR the shadowy horses, their long manes a-shake,
Their hoofs heavy with tumult, their eyes glimmering white ;
The North unrolls above them clinging, creeping night,
The East tells all her secret joy before daybreak,
The West weeps in pale dew, and sighs, passing away,
The South would cover them with roses of crimson fire :
O vanity of sleep, hope, dream, endless desire;
The horses of disaster plunge in the desolate clay.
Beloved, let your eyes half close, and your heart beat
Over my heart, and your hair fall about my breast
Drowning Love’s lonely hour in deep twilight of rest ;
And hide their tossing manes and their tumultuous feet.
THE TRAVAIL OF PASSION
WHEN the flaming, lute-thronged angelic door is wide ;
When an immortal passion breathes in mortal clay,
Out hearts endure the plaited thorn, the crowded way,
The knotted scourge, the nail-pierced hands, the wounded side,
The hissop-heavy sponge, the flowers by Kidron stream :
We will bend down, and loosen our hair over you
That it may drop faint perfume and be heavy with dew,
Lillies of death-pale hope, roses of passionate dream.
W. B. Yeats.
Yeats, W. B. “Two Love Poems.” The Savoy, vol. 1 January 1896, p. 83. Savoy Digital Edition, edited by Christopher Keep and Lorraine Janzen Kooistra, 2018-2020. Yellow Nineties 2.0, Ryerson University Centre for Digital Humanities, 2019. https://1890s.ca/savoyv1-yeats-two-love-poems/