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2021-09-15

What is the theme of When You Are Old by William Butler Yeats?

What is the theme of When You Are Old by William Butler Yeats?

“When You Are Old” is a poem by the Irish poet William Butler Yeats. In the poem, which is published in Yeats’s second collection, The Rose (1893), the speaker asks someone to think ahead to old age, strongly suggesting that the addressee will eventually regret being unwilling to return the speaker’s love.

Why did William Butler Yeats write when your old?

The poet is upset with a woman for not committing to his love, so he writes a cautionary story to warn her of how sad a future without him might be. In a way we could say that it’s quite a bitter poem, but in other ways it does also explore the nature of true, everlasting love.

What literary devices are used in the poem when your old?

Consonance: Consonance is the repetition of consonant sounds in the same line such as the sound of /n/ in And bending down beside the glowing bars and And paced upon the mountains overhead. Alliteration: Alliteration is a repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of the letters in the same line.

Who wrote when you are old?

William Butler Yeats

What is the mood of the poem when you are old?

The poem is full of gentle images, such as “Full of sleep”, “nodding by the fire”, “slowly read”, “dream,” “soft look”, and “shadows deep”. This sets the tone and mood of the first stanza which is clearly one of calmness. The first stanza is very soothing to read.

What is the rhyme scheme of the poem when you are old?

When You Are Old is comprised of three stanzas, each containing four lines. The rhyme scheme is very distinct and steady; the first stanza is a b b a; the second is c d d c; the third is e f f e. Additionally, Yeats wrote the poem in iambic pentameter.

What is a pilgrim soul?

The phrase “pilgrim soul” may refer to Gonne’s independent frame of mind, or perhaps her support for freedom and Irish nationalism. In any case, it is something unique to her in Yeats’ mind and separate from the more transient qualities of her beauty. The third stanza seems packed with meaning and power.

What is the mood of the poem what emotions did you have while reading the poem?

Answer: The poem reflects the sadness of the ‘voice’ at having been rejected by the person he loves. It is also cautionary – warning the person to whom the lines are addressed that she is likely to be lonely in old age.