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339 - The Second Coming

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Speaker: Mark Worden (Standard British accent)

THE SECOND COMING, by W. B. Yeats

Turning and turning in the widening gyre?
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;?
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;?
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,?
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere?
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;?
The best lack all conviction, while the worst Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;?
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.?
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out?
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi?
Troubles my sight: a waste of desert sand;?
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,?
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,?
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it?
Wind shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again but now I know?
That twenty centuries of stony sleep?
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,?
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?

Tags: The Second Coming W. B. Yeats