Why should I blame her that she filled my days With misery, or that she would of late Have taught to ignorant men most violent ways, Or hurled the little streets upon the great, Had they but courage equal to desire? What could have made her peaceful with a mind That nobleness made simple as a fire, With beauty like a tightened bow, a kind That is not natural in an age like this, Being high and solitary and most stern? Why, what could she have done being what she is? Was there another Troy for her to burn?
Four Songs from 'A Man Young and Old'
Song Cycle by Ronald A. Beckett
1. No second Troy  [sung text not yet checked]
- by William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939), "No second Troy", appears in The Green Helmet and Other Poems, first published 1910 [author's text checked 2 times against a primary source]
See other settings of this text.
Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):
- FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , "Pas de seconde Troie", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
Confirmed with W. B. Yeats, Later Poems, Macmillan and Co., London, 1926, page 152.
Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
2. On being asked for a War Poem  [sung text not yet checked]
I think it better that in times like these A poet's mouth be silent, for in truth We have no gift to set a statesman right; He has had enough of meddling who can please A young girl in the indolence of her youth, Or an old man upon a winter’s night.
- by William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939), "On being asked for a War Poem" [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]
3. That crazed girl  [sung text not yet checked]
That crazed girl improvising her music. Her poetry, dancing upon the shore, Her soul in division from itself Climbing, falling She knew not where, Hiding amid the cargo of a steamship, Her knee-cap broken, that girl I declare A beautiful lofty thing, or a thing Heroically lost, heroically found. No matter what disaster occurred She stood in desperate music wound, Wound, wound, and she made in her triumph Where the bales and the baskets lay No common intelligible sound But sang, 'O sea-starved, hungry sea.'
- by William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939), "A crazed girl" [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]
4. My fiftieth year  [sung text not yet checked]
[ ... ] IV My fiftieth year had come and gone, I sat, a solitary man, In a crowded London shop, An open book and empty cup On the marble table-top. While on the shop and street I gazed My body of a sudden blazed; And twenty minutes more or less It seemed, so great my happiness, That I was blessed and could bless. [ ... ]
- by William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939), "Vacillation" [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]