Things Always Fall Apart
Written by Brad Miner
Monday, August 3, 2020
I’m tempted to begin a campaign to knock down the statue of William Butler Yeats that’s outside the Ulster Bank near his boyhood home, and the good people of Sligo would probably thank me, because Ronan Gillespie’s statue is hideous.
But I’m no iconoclast. And – love him or hate him – a poet of Yeats’ stature deserves a statue. Here are two reasons why.
First, there’s his life. William Butler Yeats was born on the south side of Dublin, Ireland in 1865. Early on, the family moved, and he grew up in Slough (in South Central England) and later in London. Then his family moved back to Dublin in 1880.
His return to Ireland propelled him into all things Irish – all things, that is, except the Catholic Church.
In William’s early twenties, the Yeats family moved back to London – patriarch J.B. Yeats was nothing if not peripatetic. W.B. joined a poets’ group, the Rhymers’ Club, became interested in spiritualism and joined a group called The Ghost Club. He took an interest in fairies.