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The Send-Off

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17th November 2005 Emilienne Agius V White The "Send-Off"- pg 160 Wilfred Owen In the poem "The Send-Off", Wilfred Owen describes war in a graphical and technical way. Owen, having been a soldier himself, expresses his crude view about war but in this poem especially about the soldiers departure to war. Wilfred Owen used to be a romantic poet very similar to John Keats. However he then changed his main theme of writing into that of war, after having experienced it itself and thus wanting to share the truth about war with the rest of the world. Rupert Brooke was another poet who wrote about war too, however he described it as something patriotic, glorious and heroic unlike Owen who describes it as something crude and aimless. Open himself, who had participated in war, died seven days before the actual war was ended (1893-1918). In fact, when he wrote about war, he explained what a useless waste of life it is, a pointless battle with a great loss. Throughout this poem he explains what is going on around these soldiers, what the people around them are seeing and what these soldiers are experiencing. ...read more.


These signals are a distinction to the lifelessness of the soldiers, where the poet contrasts better the this lack of vitality where even a non-living object has more life in it than these sad soldiers. Even a lamp is alive, as it "Winked to the guard". This is a secretive signal, representing the hidden leaving of these soldiers amidst the sheltering night, so as to cover the self- shame of the ones responsible for these soldiers being sent to war. These soldiers represent the "wrongs hushed up" of the people, but they are not "wrongs" themselves. We who said them are doing wrong, but this truth is not seen by most of the people sending soldiers to war. Consequently these poor soldiers are being used to hide our shame from our sin of war, they are being used as tools. Owen's aim is to open our eyes to the truth about war, of what would be going on, because 'We cannot feel unless we can see'. There is a lack of knowledge amongst us all of what is truly going on within these soldiers, and thus we are not able to understand what their true feelings are. ...read more.


The repeated rhyme (A) creates an effect of lack of freedom and change which the soldiers have, the lack of progression in their lives. The poem is also written in a certain structure where the first fifteen verses are of description and the in the last five verses there is reflection on the outcome of war and the poor souls of soldiers who died pointlessly during war. I think that this poem is a very deep and reflective one as it gives a road to thought about the true significance of war and what lies truly behind war itself, the suffering, deaths and cruelty lying within us. The poet, having participated in war himself, is trying to open our eyes towards the pain we submit on innocent people who end up fighting as soldiers at war, who in the end don't get what they deserve, that is the merited gratefulness for their extremely courageous deed. We should however learn from messages like Owen's that war is aimless and causes great losses to countries but especially to a lot of families, and therefore we must truly recognize what has actually been going on in wars and what negative things they have brought with them throughout the years and actually do something to try to stop them. ...read more.

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