'Into The Twilight' by William Butler Yeats
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Out-Worn heart, in a time out-worn,
Come clear of the nets of wrong and right;
Laugh, heart, again in the grey twilight,
Sigh, heart, again in the dew of the morn.
Your mother Eire is aways young,
Dew ever shining and twilight grey;
Though hope fall from you and love decay,
Burning in fires of a slanderous tongue.
Come, heart, where hill is heaped upon hill:
For there the mystical brotherhood
Of sun and moon and hollow and wood
And river and stream work out their will;
And God stands winding His lonely horn,
And time and the world are ever in flight;
And love is less kind than the grey twilight,
And hope is less dear than the dew of the morn.
Editor 1 Interpretation
A Deep Dive into the Mystical World of Yeats' "Into The Twilight"
As a poetry enthusiast, I have always been fascinated by the works of William Butler Yeats. His unique style of combining mysticism, symbolism, and mythology has always left me in awe. One of his most iconic poems, "Into The Twilight," has been a topic of discussion amongst literary scholars for decades. In this literary criticism and interpretation, I aim to unpack the hidden meanings and themes behind Yeats' "Into The Twilight."
The Poem: "Into The Twilight"
Before diving into the analysis, let's first take a look at the poem in its entirety:
Out-Worn heart, in a time out-worn, Come clear of the nets of wrong and right; Laugh, heart, again in the grey twilight, Sigh, heart, again in the dew of the morn. Your mother Eire is always young, Dew ever shining and twilight grey; Though hope fall from you and love decay, Burning in fires of a slanderous tongue. Come, heart, where hill is heaped upon hill: For there the mystical brotherhood Of sun and moon and hollow and wood And river and stream work out their will; And God stands winding His lonely horn, And time and the world are ever in flight; And love is less kind than the grey twilight, And hope is less dear than the dew of the morn.
Analysis and Interpretation
The Opening Stanza
The poem begins with the lines, "Out-Worn heart, in a time out-worn, / Come clear of the nets of wrong and right." These lines can be interpreted as a call to the reader to break free from societal norms and expectations. Yeats is urging us to let go of our preconceived notions of what is right and wrong and instead embrace a more mystical way of looking at the world.
The Second Stanza
In the second stanza, Yeats introduces the concept of "mother Eire," which refers to Ireland as a mother figure. He describes her as always young with the dew ever shining and twilight grey. The reference to twilight is significant as it represents a time of transition between day and night, light and dark. It is a liminal space where the boundaries between worlds become blurred. This can be interpreted as a metaphor for the mystical world that Yeats is inviting us to explore.
The Third Stanza
The third stanza is particularly interesting as Yeats introduces the concept of the "mystical brotherhood." This is a reference to the secret societies and mystical orders that were prevalent in Yeats' time. These groups were dedicated to exploring the mystical and esoteric aspects of life and often used rituals and symbols to connect with the divine. Yeats is inviting us to join this brotherhood and explore the mystical world with him.
The Fourth Stanza
In the fourth stanza, Yeats introduces the concept of God, who is "winding His lonely horn." This can be interpreted as a reference to the biblical concept of the Last Trumpet, which is sounded by an angel to signal the end of the world. Yeats is suggesting that time and the world are in a state of constant change and flux, and that we should embrace this change rather than fear it.
The Final Stanza
The final stanza is particularly poignant as Yeats compares love and hope to the grey twilight and the dew of the morn. He suggests that these things are fleeting and transitory, and that we should not become too attached to them. Instead, he invites us to embrace the mystical world and the mystical brotherhood, where time and the world are in a constant state of change.
In conclusion, "Into The Twilight" is a powerful and mystical poem that invites us to explore the hidden depths of the universe. Yeats uses symbolism, mythology, and mystical references to create a world that is both familiar and unfamiliar. He is urging us to let go of our preconceived notions of what is right and wrong and instead embrace the mystical world with him. As a poetry enthusiast, I find this poem particularly inspiring and thought-provoking. It is a reminder that there is more to life than what meets the eye, and that we should always be open to exploring the unknown.
Editor 2 Analysis and Explanation
Into the Twilight: A Poem of Transcendence and Transformation
William Butler Yeats is one of the most celebrated poets of the 20th century, known for his evocative and mystical works that explore the complexities of the human experience. One of his most famous poems, "Into the Twilight," is a haunting and beautiful meditation on the nature of existence, the passage of time, and the possibility of transcendence.
At its core, "Into the Twilight" is a poem about transformation. The speaker begins by describing a scene of natural beauty, with the sun setting over the sea and the sky turning a deep shade of purple. But as the poem progresses, the speaker's attention turns inward, and he begins to reflect on the fleeting nature of life and the inevitability of death.
The first stanza sets the scene, with the speaker describing the "purple glow" of the sky and the "golden light" of the sun as it sets over the sea. The language here is rich and evocative, with Yeats using vivid imagery to create a sense of wonder and awe. The use of color is particularly striking, with the purple and gold suggesting a sense of majesty and grandeur.
But even as the speaker marvels at the beauty of the scene before him, he is aware of the passing of time. In the second stanza, he notes that "the light fades" and "the sea grows dark." This sense of impermanence is a recurring theme in Yeats' work, and it is central to the message of "Into the Twilight." The speaker is acutely aware that the beauty he is witnessing is fleeting, and that it will soon be gone.
As the poem progresses, the speaker's attention turns inward, and he begins to reflect on the nature of existence. In the third stanza, he asks a series of rhetorical questions: "What is life? A madness, a fever, a dream, / A lightning flash from heaven, a false alarm." These questions are not meant to be answered, but rather to provoke thought and reflection. The speaker is grappling with the fundamental mystery of life, and he is searching for meaning in the face of its transience.
The fourth stanza is perhaps the most striking in the poem, as the speaker describes a moment of transcendence. He writes, "I have seen / A thousand sunsets, and each one was grand, / But this one, this one, this one is different." The repetition of "this one" creates a sense of urgency and intensity, as if the speaker is on the verge of a profound realization. And indeed, in the final lines of the stanza, he declares, "I am changed, / I am new, / I am not the same."
This moment of transformation is the heart of the poem, and it is what gives "Into the Twilight" its power and resonance. The speaker has moved beyond mere observation and contemplation, and has entered into a state of transcendence. He has been transformed by the beauty of the sunset, and has been given a glimpse of something beyond the mundane world.
The final stanza of the poem is a meditation on the nature of this transformation. The speaker writes, "I am not the same, / But I am not different either." This paradoxical statement captures the essence of the speaker's experience. He has been changed by the sunset, but he is still fundamentally the same person. He has not become someone else, but rather has transcended his previous limitations and entered into a new state of being.
The final lines of the poem are perhaps the most enigmatic, as the speaker declares, "I am twilight, / And I am the night." This statement can be interpreted in a number of ways, but one possible reading is that the speaker has become one with the natural world. He has transcended his individual identity and merged with the larger cosmos. He is no longer a separate entity, but rather a part of the greater whole.
In conclusion, "Into the Twilight" is a poem of great beauty and depth. It explores the themes of transience, transformation, and transcendence, and does so with a language that is rich and evocative. The poem is a reminder that even in the face of the impermanence of life, there is the possibility of transcendence and transformation. It is a call to embrace the beauty of the world around us, and to seek out moments of transcendence in our own lives.
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