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W. B. Yeats

The Second Coming

Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

About the poet
W. B. Yeats
 
By the same poet
The Lake Isle of Innisfree
When You Are Old
Where My Books Go
He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven
The Song of Wandering Aengus
An Irish Airman Foresees His Death
Sailing to Byzantium
The Scholars
Long-Legged Fly
Byzantium
Memory
The Fascination of What’s Difficult
The Great Day
The Circus Animals’ Desertion
Vacillation
 
Related books
W. B. Yeats at amazon.co.uk


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