William Butler Yeats




On Woman

May God be praised for woman
That gives up all her mind,
A man may find in no man
A friendship of her kind 
That covers all he has brought       
As with her flesh and bone,
Nor quarrels with a thought
Because it is not her own.
   
Though pedantry denies,
It’s plain the Bible means  
That Solomon grew wise
While talking with his queens,
Yet never could, although 
They say he counted grass,
Count all the praises due
When Sheba was his lass,
When she the iron wrought, or
When from the smithy fire
It shuddered in the water: 
Harshness of their desire  
That made them stretch and yawn, 
Pleasure that comes with sleep, 
Shudder that made them one. 
What else He give or keep
God grant me—no, not here, 
For I am not so bold 
To hope a thing so dear 
Now I am growing old, 
But when if the tale’s true 
The Pestle of the moon  
That pounds up all anew 
Brings me to birth again— 
To find what once I had
And know what once I have known, 
Until I am driven mad,  
Sleep driven from my bed,
By tenderness and care,
Pity, an aching head, 
Gnashing of teeth, despair; 
And all because of some one 
Perverse creature of chance, 
And live like Solomon
That Sheba led a dance.


spoken = David Hoak