Monday, June 06, 2011

Great Hatred, Little Room

Spent today at San Francisco's Israel in the Gardens Independence Day celebration. A lot happened, and I will be blogging about it, and posting pictures (I hope).

While we were there, my father had a conversation with an Irish woman, there to protest Israel's independence. She said the situation in the Middle East was just like the Troubles, and Mr. Bluejeans Sr. told her that Hamas was the Real IRA, the Provos, the UVF and Ian Paisley rolled into one. She said, "I don't support Hamas", while standing next to people who unabashedly do.

Anyway, summoned by my own random associations, the poem started up in my head, and would not leave, because Yeats could put his finger on it sometimes. Something for me to think about as I sort through the day. This is by William Butler Yeats, who could be a bit of a pretentious eejit, really, but the gift was from God. I had always thought this piece was called "Fanatic Heart", like the Black 47 piece that's based on it in part, but it's actually

Remorse For Intemperate Speech

I ranted to the knave and fool,
But outgrew that school,
Would transform the part,
Fit audience found, but cannot rule
My fanatic heart.
I sought my betters: though in each
Fine manners, liberal speech,
Turn hatred into sport,
Nothing said or done can reach
My fanatic heart,
Out of Ireland have we come.
Great hatred, little room,
Maimed us at the start.
I carry from my mother's womb
A fanatic heart.

I suppose this may sound a bit mournful; it's Yeats, after all. I'm actually in a very good mood tonight. But it fit, so there it is.

1 comment:

Blue Jeans said...

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