Sunday, October 23, 2016

The Fiddler of Dooney by W. B. Yeats

When I play on my fiddle in Dooney,
Folk dance like a wave of the sea;
My cousin is priest in Kilvarnet,
My brother in Moharabuiee.

I passed my brother and cousin:       
They read in their books of prayer;
I read in my book of songs
I bought at the Sligo fair.

When we come at the end of time,
To Peter sitting in state, 
He will smile on the three old spirits,
But call me first through the gate;

For the good are always the merry,
Save by an evil chance,
And the merry love the fiddle 
And the merry love to dance:

And when the folk there spy me,
They will all come up to me,
With ‘Here is the fiddler of Dooney!’
And dance like a wave of the sea.

On my sixtieth birthday, having lived 53 years longer than physicians said I was supposed to, looking over the empty Pacific with its remarkable moon and celebrating my new membership in the Order of the Golden Shellback, I think I'll spend the evening dancing like a wave of the sea.