The Lake Isle of Innisfree
William Butler Yeates
I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;
While I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements grey,
I hear it in the deep heart’s core.
I heard this poem today in my Creative Writing class. Follow the link at the bottom to have it read to you. The poem is really a beautiful piece written in 1893. The poem has the over all theme of nature and the sounds you would hear there. it describes the desire to have a simple life; one alone in the country, simply listening. Hearing the noises of the honeybee, the crickets, and the water by the shore. The poem is a search for peace and if you listen to the reading by Yeats, the sound and tone of his powerful voice and diction have an effect of calming and peace. The reading is almost sing-songy much like many other of his poems. The second line in the third stanza in this poem portrays the beauty of the calm in this poem: ‘I hear lake water lapping with low sounds by the shore;’
He also reads this poem with strong end stops and breaks. The poem follows an ABAB rhyme scheme in each of the three stanzas. In the first stanza with the A being ‘innisfree‘ and then ‘honeybee’, and the B being ‘made’ and ‘glade’. The choice words used to represent sounds are also very beautiful in this piece. The bee-loud glade, the crickets’ songs, and the linnet’s wings are all insects found in the peace of nature. Some people might think that the hum of insects would be an annoying part of the country and that you cannot achieve peace with them around, I think that it fills the empty parts of peace, it almost would provide a calming background noise.
Read and Enjoy!