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Read more poems by William Butler Yeats: William Butler Yeats Poems at Poetry X.

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High Talk

William Butler Yeats

Processions that lack high stilts have nothing that
        catches the eye.
What if my great-granddad had a pair that were
        twenty foot high,
And mine were but fifteen foot, no modern Stalks
        upon higher,
Some rogue of the world stole them to patch up a fence
        or a fire.
        
Because piebald ponies, led bears, caged lions, ake
        but poor shows,
Because children demand Daddy-long-legs upon This
        timber toes,
Because women in the upper storeys demand a face at
        the pane,
That patching old heels they may shriek, I take to
        chisel and plane.

Malachi Stilt-Jack am I, whatever I learned has run wild,
From collar to collar, from stilt to stilt, from father to child.

All metaphor, Malachi, stilts and all.  A barnacle goose
Far up in the stretches of night; night splits and the
        dawn breaks loose;
I, through the terrible novelty of light, stalk on, stalk on;
Those great sea-horses bare their teeth and laugh at the dawn.

Added: 2 Mar 2002 | Last Read: 21 Oct 2018 8:52 PM | Viewed: 5111 times

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URL: http://plagiarist.com/poetry/3368/ | Viewed on 21 October 2018.
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