Initially, the poem can be viewed as a sonnet, however, true sonnets contain fourteen lines, in contrast to No Second Troy’s twelve, thus making it a douzaine. Like a sonnet, the rhyme scheme can divide the poem into three quatrains, with the lack of last rhyming couplet accounting for the lack of the last two lines. This coupled with a loose iambic pentameter gives the poem a controversial tone throughout, as it does not follow conventional ‘Love’ poem tradition. This transgression of rules can be seen to reflect the controversial nature of the Irish fight for independence, and even Gonne’s own controversial actions, such as her involvement in the 1916 Easter uprising.
From the onset Yea...
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In conclusion, Yeats’s poem No Second Troy contains many formal features, such as a loose iambic pentameter and an untraditional form to convey the conflicting emotions of the speaker, and Yeats himself. In addition, the use of rhetorical questions throughout the poem heightens the confusion and internal uncertainty the speaker explicitly feels towards the woman. The coupling of form and language, to create a tone of confusion and conflict, allow a reader or listener to engage and empathise with the man’s feelings towards a woman who does not love him back. Although the poem requires knowledge of the Trojan War to contextualise the poem, Yeats uses simplistic language throughout, creating an emphasis on the feelings portrayed. This makes the poem easy to read and understand, giving a reader a clear insight into the speaker, and Yeats’s feelings towards the woman.
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