The poem Leda and the Swan is about the rape of Leda committed by Zeus in disguise as a swan. Because of what they have done, it sets history in motion. Thus, it's fated that Helen will launch the war of a thousand ships, how Troy will fall, and Agamemnon will be murdered,...etc.
The poem Leda's sister and the Geese is about where Leda went that led up to her encounter with Zeus. She then goes home whimpering and tells her mother that she's been raped by a swan and she fears she's pregnant. Her mother then makes her sister take on all of the chores while she "takes it easy."
Leda and the Swan is meant to be a serious poem. It is in iambic pentameter consisting
of 4 line stanzas. It has a traditional rhyme scheme consisting of ABAB CDCD EFG EFG. It is interesting in the fact that 4 of the rhymes aren't perfect: "push" "rush" and "up" "drop." The poem starts out aggressive and ends in a passive tone. Words used to describe Leda directly were: "the staggering girl" "her thighs" "her nape" "her helpless breast" and "her loosening thighs." An indirect word describing Leda is "terrified vague fingers." Indirect words used to describe the swan indirectly were: "great wing" "dark webs" "that white rush" "blood" "indifferent beak" "feathered glory." Direct terms used to describe the swan were "wings" "bill" and "beak." The swan was never actually called Zeus or even the swan in the poem. Agamemnon was the only name to be mentioned in the poem.
Verbs play an important role in understanding the poem. It starts out in present tense with words such as "holds" "push" "feel" "engenders" and they shift at the end towards past tense ...
... middle of paper ...
...r sister saying how she'll have to help take care of her kid and how she'll probably have twins. The sixth stanza talks about how her mother comforted her and said that her sister will take on all her chores. The seventh stanza is her sister complaining of how many chores she's already doing as is. The last stanza talks about how Leda just "takes it easy" and doesn't have to do anything.
In comparison between Leda and the Swan vs. Leda's sister and the Geese, one is cynical and serious while the other was meant to be humorous. Both poems are in different meters and rhyme schemes. Nevertheless, both are respectively great literary works of art.
Holstad, Scott C. , "Yeats's 'Leda and the Swan': Psycho-Sexual Therapy in Action". n.pag. On-line. AOL. 23 Sept. 2003.
Available WWW: http://www.well.com/user/sch/yeats.html
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Binary Oppositions in Leda and the Swan Yeats' "Leda and the Swan" uses the binary oppositions of the beauty and viciousness of Zeus as a swan and the helplessness and eventual strength of Leda, Yeats reveals that even the mightiest entities may suffer the consequences of their misuse of power. In "Leda and the Swan," the beauty of the swan is contrasted with the physical attributes of a swan who acts out his male animalistic power over his female prey, demonstrating the raw male and female relationships in nature.... [tags: Leda and the Swan Essays]
1801 words (5.1 pages)
- Rhetorical Figures in Leda and the Swan "Leda and the Swan," a sonnet by William Butler Yeats, describes a rape. According to Perrine, "the first quatrain describes the fierce assault and the foreplay; the second quatrain, the act of intercourse; the third part of the sestet, the sexual climax" (147). The rape that Yeats describes is no ordinary rape: it is a rape by a god. Temporarily embodied in the majestic form of a swan, Zeus, king of the gods, consummated his passion for Leda, a mortal princess (Perrine 147). The union produced two offspring: Helen of Troy and Clytemnestra, Agamemnon's wife. In recounting this "momentous rape" with "large consequences for the future," (Perri... [tags: Leda and the Swan Essays]
1337 words (3.8 pages)
- Yeats’ Leda and the Swan and Van Duyn's Leda In Greek mythology, Leda, a Spartan queen, was so beautiful that Zeus, ruler of the gods, decided he must have her. Since immortals usually did not present themselves to humankind in their divine forms, Zeus changed himself into a great swan and in that shape ravished the helpless girl (Carey 58-59). Both William Butler Yeats and Mona Van Duyn base their poems "Leda and the Swan" and "Leda," respectively, on this story of a "mystic marriage." Yeats' focus on the sexual act itself, along with his allusions to Leda's progeny, manifest a grave and terrifying tone.... [tags: Leda Swan Essays]
1761 words (5 pages)
- William Butler Yeats poem, Leda and the Swan and Fred Chappel’s Narcissus and Echo Poets use many different stylistic devices to capture the attention of the reader. After all, who wants to read a boring poem. Many times, it is the opening line that acts as the "hook." What better way to capture someone's attention than to incite emotion with the first word. Some poets use form to their advantage. Perhaps by writing the words out in different shapes, they will create a broader readership. Some poets use symbolism, or structure to benefit their artistic license.... [tags: Yeats Leda and the Swan Essays]
771 words (2.2 pages)
- Tyranny is forceful dominance over innocence. Poetry and other forms of literature often use symbolism as a means to provide a message. The reasons for the usage of symbolism are as varied as the symbols used. Images are not always as they appear, and when one thinks about poetry more abstractly many interpretations can result. In W.B. Yeats’s poem “Leda and the Swan,” Yeats uses the retelling of a classical myth and its connotations to symbolize English dominance over the Irish people. A swan, Zeus transformed, raping a women provides an image of sneakiness, dishonesty, and tyranny.... [tags: Poetry Analysis]
1680 words (4.8 pages)
- Divine Punishment in Oedipus Rex and Leda and the Swan Divine punishment is an irreversible occurrence that creates distinct attitudes in characters. In Yeats' poem, Leda and the Swan and Sophocles' Oedipus Rex, Divine punishment plays a crucial role, and is the basis for the actions of both Oedipus and Leda. Yeats and Sophocles explore the idea of Divine punishment in various ways. Yeats shows Leda's attitude towards the experience of the rape, and the result of the rape leads to Leda's attitude towards the Gods, which then leads to many more travesties. In a similar way, Sophocles shows Oedipus' reaction to Divine punishment when Oedipus realizes that he has killed his fa... [tags: comparison compare contrast essays]
1046 words (3 pages)
- Violence In Leda and the swan by W.B.Yeats “Leda and the Swan” is one of the most well known poems by Yeats, although it’s controversy as to what really happens during the lines of this sonnet. There are many different ways as to how one can approach the interpretation of the poem, is it influenced by Yeats’ own life, in which case he puts all his frustration towards Maud Gonne into words, or is it a poem about power, or about politics. I have deliberately chosen not to take into consideration the political and social background of Ireland at that time.... [tags: essays research papers]
2779 words (7.9 pages)
- Analysis of Leda and the Swan. Greek mythology. Analysis of Leda and the Swan. Greek mythology has, throughout history, been the subject of much debate and interpretation. Conjuring up images of bloody battles and crumbling cities, its descriptions of the epic battle between good and evil still have remarkable relevance and continue to resonate with poignancy in our bleak, war-torn society. The poem Leda and the Swan, written by William Butler Yeats, attempts to shed new light on what is arguably one of Ancient Greece's most controversial myths.... [tags: English Literature]
1523 words (4.4 pages)
- Poetry is a very artistic and creative way for poets to freely express themselves, whether it be love, hate, sadness, joy, and even to express themselves sexually. William Butler Yeats uses Greek mythology in "Leda and the Swan" to describe the sexual nature of the poem. Yeats uses many poetic elements and techniques to describe the sexuality of the poem. He uses elements such as language and the structure of the poem itself to portray to his readers a very vivid picture of the sensual elements of this poem.... [tags: Poetry]
442 words (1.3 pages)
- An Analysis of Robert Ji-Song Ku's Leda In Robert Ji-Song Ku's short story "Leda," the main character, Sorin, leads a life of imitation. He applies himself to his graduate studies in comparative literature a little too readily: he compares not just text to text; he also compares his life to text, to "works of literature" (Wong 281). If his life does not match that of at least one literary character on several levels of interpretation, whether emotional, physical, or mental, he changes his behavior so that it will.... [tags: Leda Essays]
1958 words (5.6 pages)