Time drops in decay,
Like a candle burnt out,
And the mountains and the woods
Have their day, have their day;
What one in the rout
Of the fire-born moods
Has fallen away?
About this poem:
Literary scholar Richard Ellman writes in The Identity of Yeats that "Moods...are conspicuously, but not exclusively, emotional or temperamental; they differ from emotions in having form and, often, intellectual structure. Less fleeting than a mere wish, and less crystallized than a belief, a mood is suspended between fluidity and solidity. It can be tested only by the likelihood of its being experienced at all, and being so, by many people."