Analysis Of “Leda And The Swan”
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In the poem Leda and the swan written by William butler Yeats, there are some allusions and myths that that makeup this poem. Yeats describes the scene in much detail by using some very vivid imagery.
This poem follows the Greek myth of how Leda was raped by Zeus who had turned into a swan to make sure that no one knew who he was.
First there is the concept of the myth in this poem. It is form the Greek mythology of the birth of the beautiful Helen. This is also the allusion of the poem. Allusion is a brief reference to a person, place or event that readers are supposed to recognize. The story starts off with Leda. Leda is the wife of Tyndareus, the king of Sparta. Leda also was the mother to many children, including Helen of Troy, the heroine Clytemnestra, and the twins Castor and Polydeuces, also known as the Dioscuri. But Tyndareus was not the father of all of her children. The on that myth tells is the father of Helen. The story is that Zeus; the supreme god turns himself into a swan, and raped Leda. Then Leda laid an egg from which Helen was born. Leda laid the egg because Zeus raped her in the form of a swan.
One of the things that make this poem work is the imagery that Yeats puts in the poem. He makes the words seem to jump out at the reader. As in line one where it says “A sudden blow: the great wings beating still” you can feel the strong blow of the wings. In line three the reader can just imagine a big powerful swan grabbing Leda by the hair and holding her close to him. Then in line six Yeats gives the reader a clue that the swan is the almighty Zeus prying open the legs of Leda because he writes, “The feathered glory”, which is Zeus,” from her loosening thighs?” which is Leda trying to stop the swan from doing this to her. Yeats also gives the reader the feeling that Leda is getting raped and not liking it this is shown in lines five and six where it states “ How can those terrified vague fingers push...
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