CHAPTER XIX
RIVERSDALE

The Miniature Estate--"The Blueshirts"--Dejection
and Recovery--Seventy Years of Age

All his happier dreams came true--
A small old house, wife, daughter, son,
Grounds where plum and cabbage grew,
Poets and wits about him drew;
"What then?" sing Plato's ghost. "What then?"


1

FROM Riversdale the road continues in easy ascent towards the mountains and gives many views of the bay. Here, though so close to Dublin, Yeats was in the midst of scenes truly pleasing to the eye of contemplation--farms and winding streams and old demesnes. The previous tenant of his small neat house, some good garden-lover, had planned and nursed and brought to perfection the four acres upon which it stood. Nothing was missing from the miniature estate; neither orchard nor velvet croquet lawn (crocket in Yeats' odd spelling), neither rose nor well-stocked kitchen garden, neither herbaceous border nor little field.

The rooms were small, and the two at the right of the hall were turned into one for a study and sitting-room. This long narrow room had at one corner a glass door which gave access to the conservatory, where the canaries lived, and to the fruit garden. Book-shelves filled most of the lemon-yellow walls, leaving space

-462-

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W. B. Yeats, 1865-1939
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Prefatory Note v
  • Contents vii
  • Illustrations ix
  • Chapter I - Family and Early Associations 1
  • Chapter II - Schooldays 24
  • Chapter III - London (1887-91) 59
  • Chapter IV - Death of Parnel After An After 85
  • Chapter V - Mysticism in Prose and Verse 109
  • Chapter VII - Theatre and Politics: Maud Gonne 152
  • Chapter VIII - Out of Twilight 186
  • Chapter IX - The Abbey Theatre 215
  • Chapter X - Plays and Controversies 229
  • Chapter XI - Variety (1910-12) 259
  • Chapter XII - Responsibilities 280
  • Chapter XIII - Nineteen-Sixteen 295
  • Chapter XIV - Marriage 327
  • Chapter XV - Oxford 346
  • Chapter XVI - Meditations in Time of Civil War 366
  • Chapter XVII - A Sixty-Year-Old Smiling Public Man 391
  • Chapter XVIII - Wheels and Butterflies 427
  • Chapter XIX - Riversdale 462
  • Chapter XX - Old Age 475
  • Notes 515
  • Bibliography 519
  • Index 521
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