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World War One Poetry

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Introduction

20th Century Poetry Max Lewis 10p During the 1st world war many poems were written by the soldiers and by normal citizens expressing their views on the war. Some in favour of the war- these were generally written by the normal citizens. And the poems that were written by the soldiers showed just how dreadful the war was and how they had to survive in the awful conditions of the trenches and the land around them destroyed by the fighting and weather. Some of the poems from the war are recognised throughout the world. And many of the poets famous for the service to the country and for the poems they produced, for example: Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon. Many of the poets who weren't actually fighting in the war wrote poems trying to encourage young me to join up for the war, they glorified war and made it sound like a bit of fun. For example Jessie Popes "who's For The Game?" "Who's for the game, the biggest that's played" Refers to war as a game. Suggesting that war is no more than a big game which everyone can enjoy. ...read more.

Middle

But they have to keep on going anyway. Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots But limped on blood-shod. All went lame; all blind; They were tired. Didn't have the correct equipment, bleeding and in need of hospital care. Gas! Gas! Quick, boys! - An ecstasy of fumbling, Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time; In war you have to be ready for anything whether or not you are ill, injured or tired. But someone still was yelling out and stumbling, And flound'ring in fire or lime. . . Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light, As under a green sea, I saw him drowning. Someone was too ill or weak to get ready and was caught by the gas and it appeared as if he was drowning. In all my dreams before my helpless sight, He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning. Nightmares of the above event. If in some smothering dreams you to could pace Behind the wagon that we flung him in, And watch the white eyes writhing in his face, His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin; The effects of the gas bombs were dreadful. ...read more.

Conclusion

O Dickie, don't go out' . . . . The poet was wandering what the man was thinking of. And heard the man call out again. It sounds like the casualty is re-living a moment when his friend when out and was shot down by snipers. I fell asleep . . . . Next morning he was dead; And some slight wound lay smiling on the bed. When the poet awakes there is someone who is not Ill in the place of the man who had died. The poem "Suicide in the Trenches" shows that the life in the war was so bad that just to get out of war people would take their own lives. I knew a simple soldier boy Who grinned at life with empty joy, Slept soundly through lonesome dark, And whistled early with the lark. A rather simple lad who was neither good or bad. Slept quietly and was up bright and early the next morning. In winter trenches, cowed and glum, With crumps and lice and lack of rum, But, during the cold winters. Men suffered from lice and crumps and did not have the rum that they were promised. He put a bullet through his brain No one ever spoke of him again. This was all too much for the poor boy. He killed himself and nobody seemed to care. ...read more.

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