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Celebrate National Poetry Month

Published on Sunday, April 6, 2014

Celebrate National Poetry Month

What's your favorite poem?

At the Library, we always celebrate April, National Poetry Month , with a Poetry Writing Workshop, which was led last Saturday by Patrice Vecchione, herself a splendid poet.  For about 15 years, it has been our custom to wrap up the month by hosting the Robert Campbell Monterey County High School Poetry Awards in partnership with the Carl Cherry Center for the Arts. 

Personally, I like to celebrate Poetry Month by reading some poetry.  Today, I read one of my all-time favorites, and I'd like to share it with you.  What's your favorite poem?

The Wild Swans at Coole
By William Butler Yeats

The trees are in their autumn beauty,   
The woodland paths are dry,
Under the October twilight the water   
Mirrors a still sky;
Upon the brimming water among the stones   
Are nine-and-fifty swans.

The nineteenth autumn has come upon me   
Since I first made my count;
I saw, before I had well finished,
All suddenly mount
And scatter wheeling in great broken rings   
Upon their clamorous wings.

I have looked upon those brilliant creatures,   
And now my heart is sore.
All's changed since I, hearing at twilight,   
The first time on this shore,
The bell-beat of their wings above my head,   
Trod with a lighter tread.

Unwearied still, lover by lover,
They paddle in the cold
Companionable streams or climb the air;   
Their hearts have not grown old;
Passion or conquest, wander where they will,   
Attend upon them still.

But now they drift on the still water,   
Mysterious, beautiful;   
Among what rushes will they build,
By what lake's edge or pool
Delight men's eyes when I awake some day   
To find they have flown away?

Share this text ...?

Source: The Collected Poems of W. B. Yeats (1989)

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