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In this essay I intend to write about and compare these two poems, 'On The Idle Hill' and 'The Charge Of The Light Brigade.'

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Introduction

In this essay I intend to write about and compare these two poems, 'On The Idle Hill' and 'The Charge Of The Light Brigade.' I have chosen these two particular poems because I feel I have a greater understanding of them and I found them the most powerful out of the selection, I also thought they showed best the experience of war. A.E.Housman wrote 'On The Idle Hill' in 1896, he was not thinking of a particular war when he wrote it he looked at the beauty and horror of war. I will use (1) to represent 'On The Idle Hill'. Alfred Tennyson wrote 'The Charge of the Light Brigade' in 1854. He was writing about the Crimean war that occurred between 1854 and 1856. I will use (2) to represent 'Charge of the Light Brigade'. In this essay I will look at layout and also various writing techniques for example, alliteration, metaphors and personification. Poem (1) is on the subject of war in general; it's about the glory and the disaster of the whole experience. It begins with the build up to war by talking about the stillness before the war and also talks about the drumming noise from afar it then goes on to tell of the soldiers marching into battle. ...read more.

Middle

Another example is, "Bleach the bones of comrades slain," (V3 line 3), here it is used to emphasize the awful situation, and to make obvious that many, many people died. In (2) alliteration is also used quite frequently, "stormed at with shot and shell," (V3 line 5); this is used to stress the violence and brutality of the battle. It is then use again, "horse and hero fell," (v5 line 5), and this is used to put emphasis on the tragic circumstance the cavalry is in. Onomatopoeia is a word that imitates the sound it is describing; it is used only in (1). "Far I hear the steady drummer, Drumming like a noise in dreams", (V1 lines 3 & 4), the word drum definitely sounds like the noise of a drum. It is used to create a feeling of rhythm and beat. It is then used again but in a different way, "Far the calling bugles hollo," (V4 line 1), the poet hear has written what he thinks a bugle's call sounds like this gives the reader a sense of the noises that would be heard on a battle ground. An oxymoron is two words that are put together but that actually contradict each other. ...read more.

Conclusion

In (1) there is no repetition at all. Rhyme is the most commonly thought of technique in poetry, in (1) rhyme is used very strongly throughout the poem. In every verse the words at the end of line one and three rhyme and the ends of lines two and four rhyme and this pattern does not break once, it creates rhythm and makes the poem flow, this makes it pleasant for the reader. In (2) rhyme is used an awful lot, again at the end of lines but it is not as organised its very random. For example, "Theirs is not make reply, Theirs is not to reason why, Theirs is but to do or die," (V2 lines 5,6 & 7), this creates strong rhythm and lays emphasis on that particular section. In conclusion, I think that these poems are very different in size, layout, language and writing style. They have very little in common and both look at the experience of war in very different ways. 'On the Idle Hill is dreamy, still and tranquil whereas 'The Charge of the Light Brigade' is dramatic, vivid and striking. 'Choose Two Poems From the Pre 1914 Selection of War Poetry in Order to Analyse the Poets Use of Language to Describe the Experience of War' Katie Vinton ...read more.

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