Sunday, January 21

He Wishes For Cloths of Heaven - WB Yeats

Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.

--

I don't, & won't profess to know much about Yeats, despite having a little book about him which a relative once 'forgot' to return to their library, and somehow got away with it. But I remember the first time I read this poem a couple of months ago: & reread, & reread.

The way he hasn't wished to spread his dreams under her feet, but already done so, the way he compares her to some sort of heavenly being, the repetitions of 'and' which lead themselves to the list of extended & fast-flowing descriptions about the cloths, & his actual choice of words. They're commonplace, ordinary words, which makes this poem have even greater effect.

& his rhymes: he's capable of rhyming 'cloths' with itself, 'light' with itself, &! 'feet' and 'dreams' with themselves. Not many poets could do this without it sounding horribly forced.

There's also the not so small matter of the last line...

'Tread softly because you tread on my dreams. '

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