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The Coming Of Wisdom With Time Analysis



Author: poem of William Butler Yeats Type: poem Views: 41

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Though leaves are many, the root is one;

Through all the lying days of my youth

I swayed my leaves and flowers in the sun;

Now I may wither into the truth.






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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

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Though this poem is insanely short, the author packed it with symbolism. The poem describes the foolishness of youth. When a person is young, the world is full of possibility and mystery. The speaker acknowledges that the mysticality of the world in youth is an illusion with the line ¨Through all the lying days of my youth.” Children are lied to for their entire childhood in many different ways. Their parents tell them about Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, and they don´t think of it as lying to their kids, but they are. They want their kids to see magic and good in the world, and it works for a while.
What parents don't seem to realize is that when the child grows up and realizes they've been lied to, it ends all chance of them ever believing in magic again. It almost has the opposite of the intended effect. The final line, “Now I may wither into the truth,” is representative of the sad reality of adulthood. The child was bold and arrogant and maybe even ignorant, but they were happy and they expected good from the world, and then they grew up and they withered into the disillusionment of adulthood.
The poem uses a tree as a metaphor for life. The flowers represent beauty and lies and the root is symbolic of truth and adulthood. The withering of the flowers represents an ending to the lies and the beauty in the world. The poem is describing how hard truths put an end to the foolishness of youth.

| Posted on 2016-12-12 | by a guest


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Though it is a short poem, Yeats' The Coming of Wisdom with Time is rife with meaning. Essentially, it is regarding the foolishness of youth. When a person is young, the world is full of seeming possibility. The world presents itself as an appealing pool of opportunity. Yeats acknowledges that this visage is merely an illusion with the line "Through all the lying days of my youth". Youth are almost always lied to, in one way or another. Their parents feed them stories of Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny, with good intentions of fostering a mindset that can accept that there is something mystical about the world. But as children grow up and realize that they've been lied to, the disillusionment that follows can have the opposite effect. Yeats' final line, "Now I may wither into the truth", is representative of the sad reality that is adulthood. Everyone realizes at some point or another growing up that the world is not as wonderful as it has been painted to be by those that wish to shelter the younger generations.
The fact that Yeats used a flower as an image for his poem is significant because the flowers represent beautiful lies while the root is symbolic of the truth of adulthood. The poem as a whole invokes the stereotype that older individuals must be wise and younger people are either arrogant, ignorant, or both.

| Posted on 2013-12-05 | by a guest


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This poem is about the learning of hard truths, while growing up. Comparing himself to a tree, the author speaks of how his carefree youth was eventually decimated by learning the truth of a fact. Imagery is seen in the first and third lines, by creating the image of a flowering (fruit) tree. The hard truth, which the author learned, may have had something to do with his intense Irish nationalist beliefs.

| Posted on 2013-01-07 | by a guest


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This poem talks about symobolic for many past but theres many or the charaterisitcs of a person
one path how you were raised

| Posted on 2011-11-08 | by a guest


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hello, i am a student studying in shanghai, learning english poems at school during English literature class.
i want to know the emotions and imagery this poem evokes or other patterns or technics this poem has.

| Posted on 2010-12-26 | by a guest


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This poem confirms the stereotypical view of older people being wiser than the youngg. During our youth, we are all arrogant, and believe that our opinions are the only correct ones, so during the narrator's lifetime, he preached many different fickle ideas, perhaps knowing that he could not justify them. Experience comes hand in hand with age.
If you would like to discuss this further, feel free to contact me at

| Posted on 2008-12-18 | by a guest




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