In this biography of W.B. Yeats (1865-1939) the author shows him through a life of tumultuous creativity through which he strove to bring new meaning to poetry, vision and politics. The biography explores how Yeats was influenced by his unrequited love for Maud Gonne and how he became one of the leading figures of the decadent 1890's. The book also traces the developing consciousness of Yeats's homeland, the new Irish state, and reveals him as an ardent nationalist, a disillusioned observer of the Irish Civil War who was to become a powerful advocate of greater freedom for Ireland. The book also follows Yeats to the circle of Madam Blavatsky, and his undergoing of secret ceremonies of the Order of the Golden Dawn and then his turn to spiritualism in an attempt to create a philosophy that would embrace all human types and history.