Donald Weeks (essay date 1948)
SOURCE: "Image and Idea in Yeats's The Second Coming'," in PMLA, Vol. LXIII, No. 1, March, 1948, pp. 281-92.
[In the following essay, Weeks seeks to trace the images, thoughts, and associations alive in Yeats's mind while he was writing "The Second Coming. "]
There are poets whose art is an accumulating cluster of images that become more and more identified with specific ideas. I believe Yeats to have been such a poet, in whom a cluster of images grew in significance to produce the great poems of the period from the first World War to the second. Generally accepted as one of Yeats' finest lyrics is "The Second Coming." I believe that the poem gains in richness by being...
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