Yeats, William Butler. W. B. Yeats: Selected Poetry: 71. Ed. by A. Norman Jeffares. London: Macmillan, 1968.
1Bald heads forgetful of their sins,
2Old, learned, respectable bald heads
3Edit and annotate the lines
4That young men, tossing on their beds,
5Rhymed out in love’s despair
6To flatter beauty’s ignorant ear.
7They’ll cough in the ink to the world’s end;
8Wear out the carpet with their shoes
9Earning respect; have no strange friend;
10If they have sinned nobody knows.
11Lord, what would they say
12Should their Catullus walk that way?
The Wild Swans at Coole, 1919.
RPO poem Editors:
Ian Lancashire, assisted by Ana Berdinskikh