The Wild Swans at Coole

by Andrew Gates William Butler Yeats’ “The Wild Swans at Coole” appeared during a significant moment in the poet’s life and stands therein as a crucial turning point in his relation to the poetic task. Daniel Tobin comments on the unhappiness of the poet during its 1916 composition; Yeats faced a rejection by Iseult Gonne… Continue Reading The Wild Swans at Coole

Among School Children

by Pericles Lewis William Butler Yeats’s great poem “Among School Children” (1928) embodies his conception of the almost magical powers of the image or symbol: “O chestnut tree, great rooted blossomer, / Are you the leaf, the blossom or the bole? / O body swayed to music, O brightening glance, / How can we know… Continue Reading Among School Children

Mourn– and then Onward!

By Sam Alexander In his later years, William Butler Yeats was not fond of “Mourn—and then Onward!,” the short poem he published in United Ireland four days after the death of Charles Stuart Parnell in 1891.[1] He excluded it from the Collected Poems and balked when it was reprinted as a memorial for Arthur Griffith… Continue Reading Mourn– and then Onward!

Who Goes With Fergus?

by Pericles Lewis The short lyric “Who Goes With Fergus?” (1892) is representative of William Butler Yeats‘s symbolist phase, in which he aimed, not at the simple one-to-one correspondences of allegory, but at a more subtle symbolism, resistant to decipherment. In this short lyric, “love’s bitter mystery” and the mysteries of poetry are symbolized by… Continue Reading Who Goes With Fergus?

Easter 1916

by Nathan Suhr-Sytsma On Easter Monday, April 24, 1916, members of the Irish Volunteers and the Irish Citizen Army occupied Dublin’s General Post Office, and from its steps, Patrick Pearse read a proclamation of the Irish Republic. The British military responded with force, and the Easter Rising, as it became known, came to an end… Continue Reading Easter 1916

William Butler Yeats

Biography by Anthony Domestico W.B. Yeats (1865-1939) is the figure most associated with the Irish Literary Revival of the early 20th century; his poetry, prose, and drama helped earn him the 1923 Nobel Prize in Literature.  He was a complex amalgam of influences and interests, deeply engaged with the political issues of Home Rule yet equally… Continue Reading William Butler Yeats