September 1913 and Easter 1916 Poem

Topics: Easter Rising, William Butler Yeats, Irish War of Independence Pages: 3 (968 words) Published: April 23, 2008
September 1913 and Easter 1916 Poem
Throughout many of his poems, W.B Yeats portrayed important aspects of Ireland’s history especially around the 1900’s when Ireland was fighting for independence. During this time, Ireland was going through an agonizing time of struggle. The Employers’ Federation decided to lock out their workers in order to break their resistance. By the end of September, 25,000 workers were said to have been affected. Although the employers’ actions were widely condemned, they refused to consider negotiation or compromise with the Union. His readers are able to see how Yeats reflects the political, cultural, and societal atmosphere in Ireland during the early 1900’s. The poems September 1913 and Easter 1916 both reflect the political, cultural, and societal atmospheres that were found in Ireland around the 1900’s. The poem September 1913 focuses on the time where the Irish Independence was at its highest. Yeats repeats the phrase “romantic Ireland” a lot in this poem as it refers to the sacrifice of the materialistic things for independence and freedom. To further emphasize the importance and greatness of the revolution, Yeats pointed out the names of heroic individuals who gave their lives to fight for the cause. Yeats did not give any detail about the Irish heroes but he does state that “they have gone about the world like wind” (11). The heroes were so famous; their names could be heard and talked about all over the world. In this poem, Yeats does not go directly in to detail about the historical events that happened but focuses on the reactions of Ireland’s citizens and what may have lead to the revolution for independence. According to Yeats, there was a happening or an “inspiration” that had occurred that made way for Ireland to fight for independence as he says “you’d cry ‘some woman’s yellow hair has maddened every mother’s son’” (28). This actually refers to a folkloric character by the name of Cathleen Ni Houlihan, who isn’t...
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