Calling Up Byzantium

by Stephen Edgar

And, shocked himself from windblown rhapsodies
More real than midday in the grounds—the games
In which he conquers Babylon or tames
The horses of the sun—the young boy flees
The park, the path, the garden, till he sees
His father and, “The old man,” he exclaims,
“Is mad. I saw him calling God, and names,
Waving his arms and shouting at the trees.”

His father smiles and tousles his short hair
And looks across the acres to the lake,
Though he sees nothing but the windy glare
That makes the many-shadowed leafage quake.
But there stands Yeats, head thrown back to declare:
“Once out of nature I shall never take…”

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