A Poem for St Patrick’s Day

When You Are Old
By William Butler Yeats

When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

And bending down beside the glowing bars,
Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
And paced upon the mountains overhead
And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.

W.B. Yeats

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Karen Andrews is the creator of Karen Andrews. This is one of the most established and well-respected parenting blogs in the country and is a two-time finalist in the Best Australian Blogs competition. She is also an author, award-winning writer, poet, editor and publisher at Miscellaneous Press. Is an exercise junkie (when she finds the time).


  1. John ( aka @erlichcartman) says

    As I wake this morning and read your post ..carefully, I am amazed at the comfort it brings as I contemplate its meaning. the slow realization that it ‘speaks’ to me.

    Of how recently I had decided I want to live to be 100 yrs old.
    And of my wife’s ‘pilgrim soul’ of how our journey together brought us here! To our home.

    Thank you Karen.. it’s a wonderful poem.

  2. John ( aka @erlichcartman) says

    Travel in Ireland and Scotland is something I aim to do before I reach 100. I’m certain it will provide me with nice memories as I nod off by the fire in my wood stove.

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