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An Irish Airman Forsees His Death Analysis



Author: Poetry of William Butler Yeats Type: Poetry Views: 3632

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I KNOW that I shall meet my fate

Somewhere among the clouds above;

Those that I fight I do not hate,

Those that I guard I do not love;

My county is Kiltartan Cross,

My countrymen Kiltartan's poor,

No likely end could bring them loss

Or leave them happier than before.

Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,

Nor public men, nor cheering crowds,

A lonely impulse of delight

Drove to this tumult in the clouds;

I balanced all, brought all to mind,

The years to come seemed waste of breath,

A waste of breath the years behind

In balance with this life, this death.










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

.: :.

It\'s nothing to do with the \"love of flying,\" or because of the \"accident of birth.\" They\'re ridiculous. He doesn\'t hate his enemy because it\'s not his fight. He\'s an outsider because he\'s from Ireland. It\'s really not that hard.

| Posted on 2011-09-04 | by a guest


.: :.

the interaction between the title of the poem, and the perspective of the narration, align yeats with postmodernism.
postmodernism supported the notion that the \'artist\' was not as the modernists viewed him/her (i.e. as an authoritative figure dictating to the responder). Yeats injects himself into the text through the title, as it positions major robert gregory (subject of the text)in the third person. However, the first-person narration detaches Yeats from the text.

| Posted on 2011-05-20 | by a guest


.: :.

This poem, through it's blunt veiw on the war, has really shown me how the patriotic Irish considered Britain and what the war ment to them. But I think it lacks a little passion. Also Understanding the context behind this work has given me a different perspective and brougt to life the emotion behind the story. Thankyou.

| Posted on 2010-05-22 | by a guest


.: :.

I love this poem. Most of what has been written has contained a grain or more of the truth. It was written for Lady Gregory, but it sums up Yeat's attitude to life at the time of writing. Yeats was an Irish patriot, who saw WW1 as a clash of empires and did not buy in to the "saving small nations" agenda. He saw no direct advantage to Ireland for someone taking part in that war .... when perhaps they would be better fighting at home. As there was no conscription in Ireland, his "hero" was a volunteer, but since there was no advantage to him or his people in fighting, he must have volunteered purely for the thrill .... and in the clarity of youthful thinking, decided that the "craic" was worth the risk that he knew he was taking. In this, the poem has been seen as being an existentialist statement, where the "hero" stakes all on living the moment to the full.

| Posted on 2009-05-01 | by a guest


.: :.

x answer here. It explains the Irish history that influenced Yeats.

| Posted on 2009-02-22 | by a guest


.: :.

"Those that I fight I do not hate,
Those that I guard I do not love"
Does anyone know what historical context???
During the time of Yeats, who was Irish, Britain was an Empire. Britain controlled Ireland, so Ireland was very bitter. When WW1 came around, many Irish soldiers found themselves fighting for their tyrant, British Empire.

| Posted on 2009-01-23 | by a guest


.: Mis - analysis :.

Quote:"Those that I fight I do not hate,
Those that I guard I do not love"
He isnt fighting for anyone he knows, he isnt fighting for anyone he loves. He is fighting for the sheer joy of flying.

I disagree totally with the analysis.
What I believe is saying is that he does not hate his enemy because he does not know him. Equally those he fights for are nothing to him but by an accident of birth, considered his compatriots. He is fighting because that is what he is trained to do. Not for the "sheer joy of flying"! What?!?!

| Posted on 2007-11-17 | by a guest


.: :.

In this poem, Yeats brings out a very different meaning of fighting. A basic word to word explanation is as follows:
"I know that I shall meet my fate
Somewhere among the clouds above"
The Irish airman knows that someday he has to die. "Somewhere among the clouds above" has been used as the airman hopes to go to heaven
"Those that I fight I do not hate,
Those that I guard I do not love"
He isnt fighting for anyone he knows, he isnt fighting for anyone he loves. He is fighting for the sheer joy of flying.
"My county is Kiltartan Cross,
My countrymen Kiltartan's poor"
Here he says that even though his country is Kiltartans Cross, it is poor.
"No likely end could bring them loss
Or leave them happier than before"
Change in political power isn't going to affect them in any way.
"Nor law, nor duty bade me fight,
Nor public men, nor cheering crowds,
A lonely impulse of delight"
No one forced him to fight, no one forced him to go through the clouds and risk his life, it was his decision. When he killed the enemy, the delight barely lasted a second as there was no appreciation from anyone. And besides, hardly anyone knew. If at all they won a war, no one was going to give him special credit for killing that one enemy. The credit will go to the airforce on the whole.
"Drove to this tumult in the clouds;
I balanced all, brought all to mind"
He drove through the disturbances and eventually focused on his path, his aim.
"The years to come seemed waste of breath,
A waste of breath the years behind
In balance with this life, this death."
He had wasted his life fighting and will waste the rest of his life fighting. He has seen all that this world has to give-hapiness, sadness, grief, everything. To balance his life out, his death was necessary.

| Posted on 2006-02-21 | by Approved Guest


.: :.

Ceci peut seulement être une analyse de l'écriture. Aucunes demandes de l'explication ou des commentaires généraux de short permis. Les critiques donnent une quantité aléatoire entre 5 et 50 objets brillants. S'il n'y a aucune analyse. Personne n'a écrit une analyse pour la poésie. Soyez le premier!

| Posted on 2005-12-31 | by Approved Guest


.: :.

This poem was written by WB Yeats at the request of his friend lady Gregory upon the death of her son in the british air force during WW1.She wanted the poem to be her sons epitaf. Though at first he didn't want to write the poem he went ahead and did so anyway, and in it he capture the adreline rush that young people crave. the young man who died had no reason to fight in WW1. He was Irish not British and his country was not under attack. however he did so just becuase he could, becuase of the 'buzz' he got from combat and soaring above the earth. this is my favourite of Yeat's lesser known poems. in it he captures the very essence of youth.

"A lonely impluse of delight"

though this poem lacks so of the freedom of his other works it is still a masterpiece.

| Posted on 2005-08-08 | by harri


.: :.

I think that this was written for a friend of yeats. It was a dear friend who loved his job, being a pilot for the army. He loved flying and did it for himself no one else. He fought for his country although he didn't love it and he fought against enemies he didn't necessarily hate. When he went into his last fight he knew that he was going to die, there was no way to avoid it and he was ready to die. Yeats made this poem to dedicate it to one of his dear friends who died in World War I.

| Posted on 2005-04-06 | by Approved Guest




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