Four Years

Four Years

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Four Years by William Butler Yeats

Published:

1921

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Four Years

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Book Excerpt

as always, I think, a table with cold meat. I can recall but one elderly man--Dunn his name was--rather silent and full of good sense, an old friend of Henley's. We were young men, none as yet established in his own, or in the world's opinion, and Henley was our leader and our confidant. One evening I found him alone amused and exasperated.

He cried: 'Young A... has just been round to ask my advice. Would I think it a wise thing if he bolted with Mrs. B...? "Have you quite determined to do it?" I asked him. "Quite." "Well," I said, "in that case I refuse to give you any advice."' Mrs. B... was a beautiful talented woman, who, as the Welsh triad said of Guinevere, 'was much given to being carried off.' I think we listened to him, and often obeyed him, partly because he was quite plainly not upon the side of our parents. We might have a different ground of quarrel, but the result seemed more important than the ground, and his confident manner and speech made us believe, perhaps for the first time, in vic

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