In London, Yeats met with Maud Gonne, a tall, beautiful, socially prominent young woman passionately devoted to Irish nationalism.
Yeats soon fell in love with Gonne, and courted her for nearly three decades; although he eventually learned that she had already borne two children from a long affair, with Gonne’s encouragement Yeats redoubled his dedication to Irish nationalism and produced such nationalistic plays as (1902), which featured her as the personification of Ireland in the title role.
There he wrote poems, plays, novels, and short stories—all with Irish characters and scenes.
In addition, he produced book reviews, usually on Irish topics.
At this time he also wrote 10 plays, and the simple, direct style of dialogue required for the stage became an important consideration in his poems as well.
He abandoned the heavily elaborated style of written in 1912, Yeats derided his 1890s poetic style, saying that he had once adorned his poems with a coat “covered with embroideries / Out of old mythologies.” The poem concludes with a brash announcement: “There’s more enterprise / In walking naked.” This departure from a conventional 19th-century manner disappointed his contemporary readers, who preferred the pleasant musicality of such familiar poems as “The Lake Isle of Innisfree,” which he wrote in 1890.
William Butler Yeats is widely considered to be one of the greatest poets of the 20th century.
He belonged to the Protestant, Anglo-Irish minority that had controlled the economic, political, social, and cultural life of Ireland since at least the end of the 17th century.
After a wealthy sponsor volunteered to pay for the renovation of Dublin’s Abbey Theatre as the company’s permanent home, the theatre opened on December 27, 1904.
It included plays by the company’s three directors: Lady Gregory, John M.