No Country for Old Men

Uploaded 29 Apr 2009 — 43 favorites
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© Mary Ann Reilly
Views 553
Likes 5
Favorites 43
Comments 25
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Photo license: © All rights reserved

Sailing to Byzantium a Poem
by William Butler Yeats


I

That is no country for old men. The young
In one another's arms, birds in the trees
- Those dying generations - at their song,
The salmon-falls, the mackerel-crowded seas,
Fish, flesh, or fowl, commend all summer long
Whatever is begotten, born, and dies.
Caught in that sensual music all neglect
Monuments of unageing intellect.

II

An aged man is but a paltry thing,
A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
For every tatter in its mortal dress,
Nor is there singing school but studying
Monuments of its own magnificence;
And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
To the holy city of Byzantium.

III

O sages standing in God's holy fire
As in the gold mosaic of a wall,
Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
And be the singing-masters of my soul.
Consume my heart away; sick with desire
And fastened to a dying animal
It knows not what it is; and gather me
Into the artifice of eternity.

IV

Once out of nature I shall never take
My bodily form from any natural thing,
But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make
Of hammered gold and gold enamelling
To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;
Or set upon a golden bough to sing
To lords and ladies of Byzantium
Of what is past, or passing, or to come.

25 responses

  • Bermi Shutter

    Bermi Shutter gave props (29 Apr 2009):

    Love it!

  • Leslie Hunziker

    Leslie Hunziker   gave props (29 Apr 2009):

    beautiful shot!

  • Judy Wanamaker

    Judy Wanamaker (Deleted) gave props (29 Apr 2009):

    Gorgeous shot! Perfectly illustrates the Yeats poem.

  • Ted Gorczyca

    Ted Gorczyca gave props (29 Apr 2009):

    great capture, well done

  • Michael Ball

    Michael Ball gave props (29 Apr 2009):

    WOW!! I love this shot!!

  • Jüri Vissak

    Jüri Vissak gave props (30 Apr 2009):

    Nice composition and tones! Extra thanks for the poem.

  • Angelo Narciso

    Angelo Narciso gave props (30 Apr 2009):

    beautiful!

  • Benny R@mirez

    Benny R@mirez gave props (30 Apr 2009):

    Wow!! love this shot!1

  • Klaus Girk

    Klaus Girk (Deleted) gave props (30 Apr 2009):

    Very nice.

  • stuart s

    stuart s gave props (1 May 2009):

    The picture is so very strong on its own. Not sure that there are a thousand words there, but they are each worth 3 or 4 for sure. Wonderful.

  • Juan Bernal

    Juan Bernal gave props (2 May 2009):

    ese mar plateado, las velas...mucha belleza en esta foto!

  • John Linton

    John Linton gave props (2 May 2009):

    I thought I already wrote one of my dumb props for this pic...I must be losing what little is left of my mind. Another MARvelous photo.

  • Ronnie Sul

    Ronnie Sul (Deleted) gave props (5 May 2009):

    Very nice Mary Ann!

  • J. Harris Blacklist

    J. Harris Blacklist   gave props (10 Jul 2009):

    Striking image..

  • Steve Baker

    Steve Baker   gave props (23 Aug 2009):

    Gorgeous shot. Is that "Clearwater?"

  • Sergej Zlahtic

    Sergej Zlahtic said (19 Nov 2009):

    beautifull...

  • herman vandecauter

    herman vandecauter (Deleted) gave props (10 Jul 2010):

    well done! 'like this one!

  • Carlo Pagan

    Carlo Pagan gave props (1 Aug 2012):

    Wow!!! Voted!!

  • Deborah Downes

    Deborah Downes   gave props (3 Aug 2012):

    Stunning. Truly brings the poem to life. Voted.

  • Robert Larrazolo

    Robert Larrazolo gave props (16 Aug 2012):

    NICE! My vote.

  • Davide Simone

    Davide Simone (Deleted) gave props (17 Aug 2012):

    Superb, voted

  • Sarah Springer

    Sarah Springer   gave props (22 Aug 2012):

    A great big Yates yes.....thanks for sharing

  • John Linton

    John Linton gave props (28 Aug 2012):

    Oh YEAH! Rad!

  • Talisha (Tally) Sachlis

    Talisha (Tally) Sachlis   said (7 Oct 2012):

    Stunning, simplistic photo! Voted!

  • Aaron Schwartz

    Aaron Schwartz   gave props (22 Jun 2013):

    Thanks for such a wonderful picture paired with a great poem by one of my very favorite poets.

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