You must complete the required textbook readings in preparation for the Poetry Essay. This will equip you to objectively respond to the readings by compiling information from a variety of sources in order to compose a persuasive analysis of a literary work. You will also learn to follow standard usage in English grammar and sentence structure; identify the theme and structure of each literary selection and the significant characteristics or elements of each genre studied; and evaluate the literary merit of a work.
Analysis of Sailing to Byzantium by William Butler Yeats
."Sailing to Byzantium," by William Butler Yeats is a lyric poem with four stanzas. The Macmillan Company published the poem in New York in 1928 as part of The Tower, a collection of twenty-one of Yeats's poems.
Thesis statement: the poem describes the transformative power of artistic expression, art’s ability to express the indefinable, and the capacity of an individual to escape the self.
2. Summary of the poem
Growing older, feeling out of touch with the new generation superseding you, feeling surplus to requirements, waiting for death. These are, perhaps, inevitable thoughts once we reach a certain age: they certainly came to Yeats in his later years, and he frequently wrote about growing old. (See ‘Among School Children’ for another notable example.) This is what ‘Sailing to Byzantium’ is about, though it’s not all it’s about. To discover what else this – one of W. B. Yeats’s finest poems – has to say, we will have to look more closely at it. Below is the poem, followed by a brief summary of it, with some notes towards an analysis of its form, language, and imagery.
b. Old age
c. Man and the natural world
4. Stylistic devices
a. Form and meter
b. Title and setting
c. Tone of the poem
The poem Sailing to Byzantium describes an escape from to a far and imaginary countr...