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Classic and Contemporary Poetry

IRELAND, 1924, by             Poem Explanation         Poet's Biography
First Line: This is your dream of yesterday
Alternate Author Name(s): A. E.

THIS is your dream of yesterday,
The equilibrium of the storm.
No, there was nothing cast away:
The fiery cloud has taken form.
You do not know yourself in this,
But did you know your being true,
And what was smoke from the abyss,
And what celestial fire in you?
Whatever things you loved were won,
What was not loved is still denied.
That Law whose writs forever run
Will make no sacrifice to pride.
The powers that cause the earth to quake
Seem to run riderless and free
Through nature, yet they never break
The music of her chemistry.
If to be vanquished is your part
And all the fortunate stars withdraw,
Through the red chaos of the heart
Still breathes the music of the Law.
It gives to you what is your own.
If still you be of slavish mind
You ne'er shall sit upon a throne
And sway a sceptre unconfined.
And if you be the slave of hate
Within yourself you fall and fall
Until the heart be desolate,
And love is dead beyond recall.
A nation is whate'er it loves.
If love be dead it too must die.
Go, give an offering of doves
To win its immortality.

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