Themes In Adam's Curse

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William Butler Yeats’s poem, Adam’s Curse, explores the theme of disappointment through the lense of the narrator. Taking on the two identities that comprise him, a poet and an admirer, the narrator depicts the similar discouraging struggles he has experienced with the two different worlds he is a part of. By using assonance, imagery, enjambment and establishing a coupling rhyme scheme that is continuously broken with light rhymes and free verse, Yeats is able to express a disheartening tone. Furthermore, the broken content and rhyme expectations he seems to establish are a manifestation of the narrator’s disappointment because of society’s perception of writers and what love should be, as he wants to make the reader feel the same optimistic …show more content…
This idea is shown when the poet writes: “For to articulate sweet sounds together / Is to work harder than all these, and yet / Be thought an idler by the noisy set / Of bankers, schoolmasters, and clergymen / The martyrs call the world” (103). Through these lines we can see that society has casted writers and poets specifically as “idlers,” or lazy people, by those who hold jobs that are considered more valued and productive, like “bankers,” “schoolmasters,” and “clergymen” because they believe that a poet’s work is easy to accomplish. The narrator’s frustrated and disappointed tone comes from his realization that a poet’s work is genuinely “harder than” all of the other jobs aforementioned because “articulat[ing] sweet sounds together” is a task that takes multiple attempts to perfect. Thus, the poet shows his disappointment by highlighting the last two lines of the stanza because he chooses not to rhyme them together. This stands in stark contrast to the rhyming couplets that surround it and helps give more of our attention to the lack of rhyme. Similarly, we are drawn to the corresponding depressing content because of its difference to the established idea of perfect rhyme and positivity. This …show more content…
The word “ears” (104) does not rhyme with anything else, but there are long vowel sounds and assonance between “strove” (104) and “love,” (104) and “grown” (104) and “moon” (104). He is able to portray an emotionally strained drag feeling, similar to the sound they create because the words have a long duration of the “o” sound that does not end immediately. Thus, the poet has given up and faced the cruel reality of his failed love and criticisms of his profession. Although the words sound similar and compatible, nothing rhymes or completely matches, just like he believed the woman and him were compatible only for his expectations to be diminished because they are not truly fitting. The poet is able to come to terms with the fact that “[they’ve] grown / As weary-hearted as that hollow moon” (104). The use of enjambments in this final stanza helps to reinforce this idea because the lines don’t have a structured form; his words carry over from one line to another like his natural feelings and thoughts being released in an uncontrollable and ferverous manner. The love the narrator thought was possible is no longer a possibility, and he accepts this defeat freely through a saddening

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