“Heavens’ embroidered cloths”

Image of Yeat's poem Heavens' Embroidered Cloths

Found this image while looking for Yeat’s poem … thank you Melissa M’Lou. I hope you don’t mind me borrowing it. I think it’s lovely.


A while ago I was watching this marvellous TED talk by Ken Robinson. That man got to be smart AND funny which is pretty sexy in a man, and if I could I would get him to be my son’s Father, or my husband, or perhaps, in an ideal world, both. But someone else beat me to it.

In the end of his talk, he quoted this poem:

By William Butler Yeats

Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly, because you tread on my dreams.


I’ve never heard it before because if the word luddite applied to poetry as well as gadgets, I’d be a big fat one. It just never occurs to me to read poems. I sometimes think that my life would have turned out differently (romantically speaking) if I’d looked more like a Pre-Raphaellite and had passed my teenage years sitting in the window, framed by perfect light, sobbing privately between the lines of a sonnet but I just never seemed to have time. What with all that netball that had to be played.

But I really really was moved by this poem, so thanks Ted. I mean Ken. And Melissa M’Lou for relieving me of the duty of creating an image to go with the poem. There’s only so many images of embroidered Chinese jackets that one can take in one google sitting.


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