Why does the speaker desire peace so much in the poem "The Lake Isle of Innisfree" by Yeats?
There is little explanation of why Yeats is so hungry for peace in his famous poem "The Lake Isle of Innisfree." Rather, Yeats spends most of the poem describing the pastoral beauty and idyllic peace of a quiet existence. However, one can guess that Yeats wants peace from the trials of urban existence.
Written toward the end of the 19th century, "Innisfree" can be seen as a response to a rapidly changing world. Like the Romantics before him, Yeats appears dissatisfied with conventional existence and yearns to return to an idealized, pastoral lifestyle. Additionally, we can guess that the existence Yeats seeks to escape from is something of an urban, industrialized one. Take, for instance, the poem's final lines:
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,I hear it in the deep heart’s core. (10-12)