• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Analyse Break of Day in the Trenches.

Extracts from this document...


Analyse Break of Day in the Trenches. Break of Day in the Trenches was written by Isaac Rosenberg during the time he was serving on the Western Front in the Great War (1914-1918). It was later published during the December of 1916. This poem is often recognised as one of Rosenberg's finest pieces and is even praised by Siegfried Sassoon, who comments that the "sensuous frontline experience is there, hateful and repellent, unforgettable and inescapable." In my opinion, when reading Break of Day in the Trenches, three other poems by the author should be read in conjunction with it. These would be In the Trenches, Marching and The Troop Ship. The first of the three is often seen as Rosenberg's first attempt of Break of Day in the Trenches. It also holds a very similar setting to the poem in question and makes strong references to the poppy. The second incorporates striking colours in it which corresponds to the colour imagery of the poppy. ...read more.


thoughts are running whilst he is ludicrously and affectionately wearing the poppy roughly where a bullet would enter if he were to stick his head above the parapet. There fore he is hiding in a whole the way a rate should. This is the role reversal that Rosenberg feels took place during his time in the war. He writes: "A queer sardonic rat...what do you see in our eyes/At the shrieking iron and flame/Hurled through still heavens?" The colour of the poppy is also significant. The colour is bright red d is commented that it gains it colour and nourishment through the draining of the dead men's blood. This idea that that the poppy lives through the death of other things is also brought up in other war poems e.g. Dead Man's Dump. In this poem, also written by Isaac Rosenberg, creates the image that nature thrives on the death of other living things and disturbs the pastoral image of nature being beautiful, romantic and kind. ...read more.


Now referring back to the rat in the poem, the rate is said to "have touched this English hand/You will do the same to a German." This illuminates the irony that such a worthless creature can cross that kind of boundary (whilst he is afraid to move from his hole) and at the same time it links the two enemies. Another point would be to comment that this image of the rat also ties in with the imagery used by John Danne in The Flea (he uses it for the idea of courtship). This is due to Rosenberg, as with most of the men writing poems during the Great War, was heavily influenced by the metaphysical poets. The image of the rat also crossing "the sleeping green between" brings to mind the poem Ecchoeing Green by William Blake. It also emphasised the helplessness and worthlessness that the speaker feels during this time. Isaac Rosenberg uses Break of Day in the Trenches to comprehend what is occurring all around him and to explore his ideas of the role of nature in the war. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level War Poetry section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month
  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work