This is for Jane’s A Month with Yeats Challenge. Sorry for so many posts today. I’m doing them while I get a chance before I’m back to projects and before Thanksgiving.
This quote is from “The Old Age of Queen Maeve.”
“out of the dark air over her head there came
A murmur of soft words and meeting lips.”—W.B. Yeats
Once she was young and fair of face,
she lived life as if it were a race
where she was the brightest and fastest, and before it stopped
she would need to make it to the top.
But now she was confined to a castle tower
so far in time from her bridal bower
and instead of those who loved her well,
it was to her a sort of hell
with only servants and guards who gaped and glowered.
And so, she sat, and sometimes she’d spin,
sometimes ponder, or wonder about her sins
(of which she thought there were many
but as with her life, far from ordinary.)
Of late she had begun to tire,
become very cold, even before the fire,
she thought sometimes her husband, her lover,
was there in the night, his spirit would hover
as if to say, soon, though not today
once again, you’ll dance and sway
in my arms—we’ll be together,
it will be like yesterday
when you were young and fair of face,
but you’ll no longer be running in the race,
a few nights later he came for her,
took her hand and opened a door
the glowering servants saw a faint glimmer
that grew bright, then dimmer in the night
and she was gone, to dance in the starlight.
Ford Madox Brown, “Convalescent: Portrait of Emma Madox Brown,” [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons