W. a metaphor representing the ruling government that

W. B. Yeats’ riveting poem, “The Second Coming,” derives its power primarily from its horrific sequences of similes and elaborate metaphors painting images of anarchy leading not to the Second Coming of Christ, but to the Second Coming of the “rough beast.” The poem presents the coming of this beast robustly through the granularity of his diction. However, the changing force of the gyres and the coming imminence of the beast invoke an apprehensive emotion disparate from the positive outlook of the Christian prophecy. The “turning and turning” of the gyre is an integral part of an elaborate metaphor reflecting the instigation of the apparently inferior people to eradicate the control of an unstable and authoritarian government. The progressive verb, “turning,” keeps the action present and incessant, while the word “widening” evokes the expansive scope of modernity’s destruction. The falcon is a metaphor representing the ruling government that “cannot hear the falconer.” It indicates the obliviousness of the superior rulers that are unaware of the people’s exasperation. Due to the people’s infuriated mindsets, they have gradually become free pioneers of dangerous license and unguided willpower, hoping to escape the turmoil castigated by falconers whose roles involve human violence. The falcon moves closer to periphery, beyond the falconer’s sphere of influence. This reinforces a loss of control, causing the people to fear social disintegration and corruption. The lines, “the best lacking all conviction” and “the worst are full of passionate intensity,” underscore the indiscrimination and interdependence embedded in a society’s revolution. By cryptically announcing an indefinite creature in an indefinite place, he explicates the “Spiritus Mundi” as both a collective unconscious of humanity and an arrangement of cultural archetypes and memories. These universal symbols have once interlocked to buttress this unified soul of mankind, as well as the standards and novelties of Yeats’ time.An image that highlights the transformation from a traditional, objective, and moral law into a subjective, subconscious, and turbulent instinct is the ominous sphinx. Beneath the swirling desert birds in the sky is a “shape with lion body and the head of a man” with a “gaze blank and pitiless as the sun.” The Egyptian sphinx is a pre-Christian emblem. It may not be stately or even symbolic of advancement. Yeats’ sphinx instead sits forbidding and terrifying, signifying the punishment humanity will soon face due to its deterioration of societal morals in the 20th century. The simile describing the sphinx’s eyes captures the relentless burn of the sun in the desert, signifying that this strange creature will be the world’s retribution for modern crimes. Yeats’ animal imagery instills within the reader a sense of regret and unease over this impending apocalypse. Attuned to the fact that communism and fascism have been on the horizon during the 1920s, Yeats marks “The Second Coming” as a poem of birth – one filled with strophes and images holding uncanny power. Particularly, socio-religious themes are painted by a “loosed blood-dimmed tide” and a “drowned ceremony of innocence,” both of which suggest that the purity of the human individual is corrupted by the emotional destruction that accompanies physical turmoil. Such emotional damage encompasses the unreasonable, imprudent mindset of the entire population provoked by the people’s enmity against disorder and forebodingly lawless society. The religious purity of the human soul, the overall welfare of the European countries, and the natural order all enshrine a 2000-year Christian history. But according to Yeats, a bizarre, new historical movement is now replacing and even debilitating the old historical movement, paving a clear passage for a “rough beast.” Amiss the turbulence engendered by the middle-class social life being pulled out from the millions of oppressed people in WWI, this “rough beast” appears as a usurper of the “cradle,” that being the Messiah’s birthplace. The power of “The Second Coming” lies in Yeats’ ability to be elusive in purposefully avoiding to directly state the form that the Second Coming could take. What is born may not be anything resembling Christ and is perhaps a disturbing mirage of a dangerous creature decentering Christianity from its seemingly secure state in western civilization. This is truly a radical, if not heretical, notion for any national poet of a Christian community. Maybe Christianity is merely one symbolic and civilized order among other orders. Perhaps other civilizations have long waited for their own beacons of hope or for their own deities to awaken. Yeats implies that only when war stops escalating, can the “rough beast” prevent itself from intruding the world with total doom and gloom. However, since this “beast” is slouching, it should still not go unnoticed that it exudes an indolent, low-class demeanor, foreboding its bleak intrusion as a detestable force. Considering the historical context of Yeats’ generation, fascist dictators have continued not to alleviate but capitalize on the angst of populations that crave certainty in times of uncertainty and endure both its inconclusive halt instigated by the Great War and its corresponding “tide” of bloodshed. The new order being ushered in by the “rough beast” may not only be attributed to mankind but also to the infinite and impersonal cycle of gyres. Since the presence of Jesus Christ was a widely accepted yet unproven belief held in Europe, the existence of Yeats’ mythical avatar in the physical world can be equally as possible and valid as that of the Christian savior from the Biblical Book of Revelations. All the sensory details implemented in the poem help construct Yeats’ landscape – a multidimensional scenery, not a mundane two-dimensional painting. Yeats’ figures of speech are appropriately utilized because they effectively exemplify the realistic, candid nature of the chaotic world “at hand.” Delving into this world by visualizing the disturbing illustrations drawn by Yeats powerfully evokes a sense of concern and urgency from his readers. It is undoubtedly compelling for his readers to immerse themselves into this landscape where meager survival should not be tolerated, this worst case scenario of a dystopian future, this ambience imbued with fear and trepidation.