Mental air

A poem by the great Irish writer William Butler Yeats on the difficulties of getting the balloon of the mind into its narrow shed.

No, I’m not really sure what it’s about either, but I wonder if that’s the point.

The Balloon Of The Mind
by William Butler Yeats

Hands, do what you’re bid:
Bring the balloon of the mind
That bellies and drags in the wind
Into its narrow shed.


  1. zoo
    Posted November 24, 2010 at 4:07 am | Permalink

    I suspect it is an extension of right hand not knowing what left is doing or pretending not to know as the mind gives breath to the knowing lie it is spreading.

  2. Posted November 24, 2010 at 5:56 am | Permalink

    Oh neuroanatomist Jill Bolte Taylor figured out the secret meaning of that Yeats poem when she had her left brain stroke:

  3. Kate
    Posted November 24, 2010 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    It’s a koan!

  4. Amy
    Posted November 24, 2010 at 8:51 pm | Permalink

    I agree with Kate!

    And I loved the video of Jill Bolte Taylor!!! Just lovely….

    Tks for the post. You rock.

  5. mrm
    Posted November 24, 2010 at 10:40 pm | Permalink

    Oh come on guys!

    When did you last try to write what you were actually thinking? It takes pages to capture a second’s thought, and then it is only a compromise: the hugeness/multilayeredness of what passes as thought, and what the writing hand can actually catch of it all.

    WBY was better than most at catching it, but even he could only suggest the rest.

Post a Comment

Required fields are marked *


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 26,837 other followers