On occasion, when a tragedy takes over our media and what seems like our collective consciousness, I am reminded of the William Butler Yeats poem “The Second Coming.”
The first time I read this poem was on September 11th, 2001. I was in my junior year at the University of West Florida and the Twin Towers had just been attacked. School hadn’t been cancelled yet. When I arrived, the somber mood on campus hung thick. My professor, Dr Lowe-Evans, didn’t speak for about ten minutes and the students who were there knew why. Then she began reading the Yeats poem. After, she said, I don’t have any words. She turned on the news radio and we listened. Fifteen minutes later, she got word that school was cancelled. She said we could go, but that she was going to stay and listen to the news. Nobody moved. We sat the entire class period, listening to the tragic story. Then we slowly filed out.
Now, after the events in Charlottesville, I’m reminded of this poem again.
I’ve included it for you to enjoy.