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How Wilfred Owen in the poem "Disabled" analyses the theme of war

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Introduction

By analyzing the poem "Disabled" outline how Owen uses the poetic form to illustrate his ideas about the war. In the poem "Disabled" Wilfred Owen clearly expresses his opinion about First World War and the peer pressure that was used to force young people to join the army. The images created by a poet are very realistic as Owen was a soldier himself. In this poem he looks to the world through a young man's eyes, who went to the war to become a hero, but had his life finished before it has begun. From the very first lines we are given a clue that a person has lost his legs "He sat in a wheeled chair", this creates a sense of sympathy and pity at the same time. The poet uses a very powerful imagery in the first three lines. He expresses the sadness of man's life by using words "ghastly suit of grey", which creates the dark and gloomy atmosphere, as the reader links the grey colour with void, sadness. However in the third line it is written "legless, sewn short at elbow" it is common to sew shut pant legs and sleeves if someone is missing that appendage. ...read more.

Middle

This creates the image in reader's mind that the poor man sacrificed himself for something that wasn't' worth it. The next line ("Poured it down shell-holes till the veins ran dry" ) gives an image of blood pouring out of soldiers body. The idea of veins running dry confirms the previous line showing that a large amount of blood was lost. The created atmosphere filled with the odour of death and despair is contrasted with the memories of youth of the man, and how "he liked a blood-smear down his leg, after the matches, carried shoulder-high", showing us that injuries from football made him feel proud and confident, as he'd be celebrated by others. This is ironic as his injuries from war, the loss of his legs and arm, evoked only unhappiness in himself, making him feel outcast by everyone, especially women. But at that time, he didn't think about what would happen to him in the war. "Someone had said he'd look good in kilts / that's why; and maybe, too, to please his Meg" his choice to join the army was based purely on social status and the opinions of his friends. This contrasts with the previous emotions created by Owen. ...read more.

Conclusion

These lines also show, that the disabled man is no longer important, he is forgotten. Yet, he has no other choice but to wait, as his life is in someone else's hands. The repetition of the line "Why Don't they come?" has a pitiful tone showing the contrast between the glory of a soldier and sadness of an ex-soldier. The poem "Disabled" By Wilfred Owen is a passionate expression of outrage at the horrors of war and of pity for the young soldier sacrificed in it. It is dramatic and memorable. This poem shows that Owen didn't like the war and what it did to young people. But most of all he hated the pressure that was used to make people join the army. Poet used rhyme, imagery, metaphors and repetitions to give the reader clear view of the horror of the war and awfulness of life being handicapped creating a sad and depressing mood. Owen also played with readers emotions throughout the poem. Whatsoever, the poet in the end left a chance for a reader to choose- feel sorry for the man, or critisise him for his naivity and stupidity. Whichever way the reader decides to feel about the young soldier, the poem leaves a great emotional effect and also a better understanding of reality of the war and how it might change the lives of young people. ...read more.

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