Poems of W.B. Yeats: The Rose

c. Did the division of the poem into three stanzas help you understand the poem better?

When You Are Old

WHEN you are old and grey and full of sleep,

And nodding by the fire, take down this book,

And slowly read, and dream of the soft look

Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

How many loved your moments of glad grace,

And loved your beauty with love false or true,

But one man loved the pilgrim Soul in you,

And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

And bending down beside the glowing bars,

Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled

And paced upon the mountains overhead

And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.

William Butler Yeats

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Yes they did. They denote the different stages of rememberence. It sort of moves backwards The old woman (I think) and then the recollections of how the man loved her so completely. These stages are spersted by stanzas.