The Age of Anxiety

Written by WH Auden

Faces along the bar

Cling to their average day:

The lights must never go out,

The music must always play . . .

Lest we should see where we are,

Lost in a haunted wood,

Children afraid of the night

Who have never been happy or good.

"The Age of Anxiety" (published 1947) is the strangest flower of a marvellously fertile period. It would come to inspire a symphony and a ballet and win the Pulitzer prize. It was the last long poem WH Auden would ever write.