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I know that I shall meet my fate Somewhere among the clouds above; Those that I fight I do not hate, Those that I guard I do not love; My country is Kiltartan Cross, My countrymen Kiltartan's poor, No likely end could bring them loss Or leave them happier than before. Nor law, nor duty bade me fight, Nor public men, nor cheering crowds, A lonely impulse of delight Drove to this tumult in the clouds; I balanced all, brought all to mind, The years to come seemed waste of breath, A waste of breath the years behind In balance with this life, this death.
Confirmed with W. B. Yeats, Later Poems, Macmillan and Co., London, 1926, page 245.
- by William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939), "An Irish airman foresees his death", appears in The Wild Swans at Coole, first published 1919 [author's text checked 2 times against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive):
- by Burton E. Hardin , "An Irish airman foresees his death", op. 23 no. 4 (<<1979), copyright © 1983 [tenor or soprano, horn, and piano or strings], from Flights of Fancy, no. 4. [text not verified]
- by Elaine Hugh-Jones (b. 1927), "An Irish airman foresees his death", 2012. [voice and piano] [text not verified]
- by Marjorie M. Rusche , "An Irish airman foresees his death", 1994 [soprano, clarinet, violin, and cello], from Songs of Love and Death, no. 2. [text verified 1 time]
Available translations, adaptations, and transliterations (if applicable):
- FRE French (Français) (Pierre Mathé) , title 1: "Un aviateur irlandais prévoit sa mort", copyright © 2015, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
This text was added to the website: 2009-09-17
Line count: 16
Word count: 105