Their union produces three eggs. Pollux and Castor, although born from separate eggs, are often considered — and referenced as — twins, including in their representation as the constellation Gemini.
The poem, which somewhat unusually for Yeats is a sonnet, is about the rape of the Greek girl Leda by the god Zeus, who has assumed the form of a swan. Leda and the Swan A sudden blow: How can those terrified vague fingers push The feathered glory from her loosening thighs? And how can body, laid in that white rush, But feel the strange heart beating where it lies?
A shudder in the loins engenders there The broken wall, the burning roof and tower And Agamemnon dead. Being so caught up, So mastered by the brute blood of the air, Did she put on his knowledge with his power Before the indifferent beak could let her drop?
This single act, Yeats tells us, brings about the Trojan War and, with it, the end of Greek civilisation and the dawn of a new largely Christian age. Because in raping Leda, Zeus made her conceive Helen of Troy, whose beauty would bring about the outbreak of the Trojan War.
This is a great cataclysmic moment in history merging history with myth for Yeats. Yeats was interested in such momentous events. He believed that civilisation progressed on a cycle, where each epoch lasted roughly two millennia.
In 2, BC, the rape of Leda by Zeus as a swan inaugurated the next epoch; 2, years later, the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary would signal the arrival of a new era. Zeus assaults at once.
Swans, the story goes, mate for life, so although this overture is unlooked-for, there is a suggestion of its permanence too. Does it suggest that Leda should have learned from her experience with Zeus, and that what follows — the Trojan War, begun because of a woman she brought into the world — is partly her fault?
It remains a baffling question, with no clear answer. As well as giving birth to Helen of Troy, Leda will also conceive Clytemnestra, the wife of Agamemnon; Clytemnestra will later kill her husband, after the Trojan War, for sacrificing their daughter in exchange for fair winds from the gods.
When Zeus overcame Leda with his divine power during the moment of his assault, did he also impart foreknowledge of what this event would cause, before — once it was all over — he dropped her, having done what he came to do?This poem was written by William Butler Yeats, an Irish poet, in This poem is based on the Greek myth of Zeus and Leda.
In this myth, the god Zeus turns himself into a swan in order to rape the beautiful woman Leda. Poems of W.B. Yeats: The Tower Questions and Answers.
The Question and Answer section for Poems of W.B. Yeats: The Tower is a great resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel. The poem is a Petrarchan sonnet, a form usually associated with love and romance, yet here used controversially by Yeats.
The story of Leda and the Swan comes from ancient Greek mythology. Zeus, the Father of the Olympian Gods, took the form of a swan in order to seduce Leda, daughter of King Thestius. When Yeats wrote this poem in , most of his readers would have been familiar with the story of Leda and the Swan.
Nowadays, it helps to have a good online encyclopedia to help out with referenc. ‘The feathery glory from her loosening thighs’ and ‘the strange heart beating where it lies’ are superb examples of the power of art to transmute the imaginary into the real, as is the entire poem/5(2).
In Leda and the Swan Yeats represents the Irish being raped by the English. This is considered in a more literal sense here. As the poem is a sonnet, this could suggest a love poem, however Leda and the Swan, is far from a love poem, quite the contadiction; an unconventional “love” poem.
the daughter of Leda and Zeus. Zeus.
“Leda and the Swan” Summary The speaker retells a story from Greek mythology, the rape of the girl Leda by the god Zeus, who had assumed the form of a swan. Literature Network» William Butler Yeats» Leda And The Swan Leda And The Swan A sudden blow: the great wings beating still Above the staggering girl, her thighs caressed By the dark webs, her nape caught in his bill, He holds her helpless breast upon his breast. This poem was written by William Butler Yeats, an Irish poet, in This poem is based on the Greek myth of Zeus and Leda. In this myth, the god Zeus turns himself into a swan in order to rape the beautiful woman Leda.