A poem by Yeats

Just now I’ve been skimming through the poems about aging on poetry.org. This one by Yeats which once I had memorized spoke to me.


When You are Old
by W. B. Yeats

When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

And bending down beside the glowing bars,
Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
And paced upon the mountains overhead
And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.

Yes, I dream of the soft look your eyes had once, and see too their shadows deep. Did you know the end was near? You so liked “The End” by Mark Strand. Yes, I loved the pilgrim soul in you, but feared the sorrows of your changing face. And now my Love has fled and is hidden somewhere amid a crowd of stars. Can I find you there?

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