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For Anne Gregory Analysis

Author: Poetry of William Butler Yeats Type: Poetry Views: 1057

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"NEVER shall a young man,

Thrown into despair

By those great honey-coloured

Ramparts at your ear,

Love you for yourself alone

And not your yellow hair.'

"But I can get a hair-dye

And set such colour there,

Brown, or black, or carrot,

That young men in despair

May love me for myself alone

And not my yellow hair.'

"I heard an old religious man

But yesternight declare

That he had found a text to prove

That only God, my dear,

Could love you for yourself alone

And not your yellow hair."


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

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In this poem, the poet is telling a young girl that most men who love her, do so only because of her yellow hair (external beauty). In the second stanza, The young girl, who believes in humanity, says that she would be loved even if she would die her hair in other shades, which are less pleasant. In the third stanza, the poet reaffirms his point by stating that it was proven that only God could love someone for what they truly are. If we correlate the poem to real events, Anne Gregory was the daughter of a close friend of Yeats, so Yeats may have written the poem as an advice to her. Anne was also the name of Yeats' own daughter.

| Posted on 2018-02-12 | by a guest

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When You Are Old
by William Butler Yeats
When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;
How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face;
And bending down beside the glowing bars,
Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
And paced upon the mountains overhead
And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.

| Posted on 2014-09-03 | by a guest

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Father (perhaps mother) to daughter. The voice of experience is answered by the simplicity of the response that the first attraction will be to her(?) beauty which she can control; but then the first voice answers (with further or different simplicity) by quoting the man who has found the answer in religion. There is a tremendous impatience in the young voice and an almost cynical awareness in the senior voice that he had expected this response Accepting the fact that our initial response to others is a response to their appearance, and that initial response will never entirely fade away

| Posted on 2014-09-01 | by a guest

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When I first read this poem I only saw the interpretation outlined above. As I have become older and maybe more cynical I have wondered if perhaps Anne was not a really pleasant person. Perhaps men were attracted to her yellow hair but on getting to know her better were not as smitten hence only God would be capable of loving her despite her imperfections of character. I think it is a barb at the end of the poem directed at Anne.

| Posted on 2014-02-04 | by a guest

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This is a very beautiful poem showing the narrow minded nature of human beings.
Only GOD can truly love us for who we are not human beings

| Posted on 2013-03-20 | by a guest

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yeats points towards the base elements inside us....the craving for flesh which lies hidden inside us..only pure love devoid of any craving raises ones stature to god..

| Posted on 2009-10-05 | by a guest

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The poem “For Anne Gregory” by William Butler Yeats is an intricately designed poem. The poet uses great detail in the figurative language used and the diction is precise. The meaning of this poem is conveyed beautifully, the message the poet is trying to send is that love is a harsh journey because Anne Gregory will never be taken seriously and will always be loved merely for her appearance.

| Posted on 2007-11-01 | by a guest

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In this poem, Yeats describes the ways of human nature. In how that human beings are incapable of seeing what is on the inside of people. They can only distinguish the exterior features of mankind. In the first stanza, he is himself, telling Anne Gregory that she will never be loved for herself, only her hair. In the second stanza, the speaker is Anne defending herself saying that she believes in man and that they can see what is on the inside. The third stanza, is spoken by the author again, reaffirming what was said in the first stanza.
I hope this interpretation has helped you. ~*~(SM)

| Posted on 2005-04-24 | by Approved Guest

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