Iseult Gonne: Yeats's Perpetual Struggle against Aging

Wonkyung Shin
2017 The Yeats Journal of Korea  
This paper examines some of Yeats's poems referring to the aging problem. While many poems on this issue have been discussed, few have put their focus on the poems related to Iseult Gonne. Aging takes a toll on Yeats when he feels immoderate passion for his age: he realizes that he is too old to win Iseult's love. This paper investigates Yeats's ways to solve the aging problem. The old man often admires beautiful Iseult, but he is tormented by the thought of his old age. However, the poet
more » ... ver, the poet sublimates his grief to the lofty thought that old men are much wiser than the youth. So instead of mourning his decrepit body, he gives fatherly advice to Iseult. The Mask is another escape from the old poet. Wearing the Mask helps him attain the lofty dream, getting over the hard reality of being an old man.
doi:10.14354/yjk.2017.52.231 fatcat:zjjujwpjtfhkljtf2kecsxskba