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Through His Poetry Wilfred Owen Wished to Convey, to the General Public, the Pity of War. In a Detailed Examination of these Poems, With Reference to Others, Show the Different in which He achieved this

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Introduction

Through His Poetry Wilfred Owen Wished to Convey, to the General Public, the Pity of War. In a Detailed Examination of these Poems, With Reference to Others, Show the Different in which He achieved this Wilfred Owen fought in the war as an officer in the Battle of the Somme. He entered the war in January of 1917. However he was hospitalised for war neurosis and was sent for rehabilitation at Craiglockhart War Hospital in Edinburgh that May. At Craiglockhart he met Siegfried Sassoon, a poet and novelist whose grim antiwar works were in harmony with Wilfred Owen's concerns. It was at Craiglockhart where Wilfred Owen produced the best work of his short career under the tutelage of Siegfried Sassoon. Siegfried Sassoon had recently made a public declaration against the continuation of the war by throwing his Military Cross medal for bravery into the River Mersey in Liverpool. Wilfred Owen's earlier work ignored the subject of war but Siegfried Sassoon urged him to write on the war. Wilfred Owen wrote his poems while at Craiglockhart as a cathartic experience to help him to forget his experiences in France. He also wrote his poems as an attempt to stop the war and to make people realise how horrific it was. In a thorough examination of the poems "Anthem for Doomed Youth", "Dulce et Decorum Est" and "Disabled" and also with some reference to other works by Owen, it can be seen that he uses different poetical features, styles and methods. Wilfred Owen addresses his readers from different stances right up to him addressing the reader personally. This method is very effective in evoking feelings from great anger and bitterness to terrible sadness and even sarcasm, making the reader sometimes even feel guilty. ...read more.

Middle

Gargling is onomatopoeic; it describes that when the poison gas is inhaled, it rots away the lungs. The man is physically expelling his rotten lungs through his mouth. It is not a very pleasant thing to think about, yet Owen is forcing this image upon his reader. "Bitter as the cud" This is a simile describing the taste of the man's blood and froth. Cud is partly regurgitated food, which animals, especially cows, return to their mouths to chew on. This is also an echo from "Anthem for Doomed Youth" where it says "those who die as cattle". Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues" The man's mouth would be filled with blisters, and his mouth also rotting. The word "tongue" can also be linked to the lies told by the government, in the propaganda machine. At the end of this poem he pleas to the reader, not to tell "children ardent for some desperate glory" that it is sweet and fitting to die for ones country. In this poem, nothing is hyperbolic; Wilfred Owen is simply describing his experiences of the war. This poem is different from "Disabled", because this poem uses greatly metaphors, simile, onomatopoeia etc. to create graphic imagery of the war, whereas "Disables" uses leitmotif to describe the past and present. "Anthem for Doomed Youth" ironically juxtaposes sounds of the war and funeral imagery in the octet of this sonnet. This poem is a sonnet, and therefore starts with a strong statement or a question. In this case it is a question. "What passing bells for those who die as cattle?" This is a very angry and bitter question. Owen is emphasising the fact that the British government were sending young men out to France to be put through hell, yet they did not care. ...read more.

Conclusion

Throughout the poem Wilfred Owen is describing, in graphic detail, his own experiences of the war. This is an oxymoron to "Anthem for Doomed Youth" which is an elegiac sonnet, so it is not an attack on people but instead Wilfred Owen is feeling sympathy for the families who have lost loved ones. Wilfred Owen however is also questioning his own Christian faith, and in this poem he is attacking the church and the pointlessness of organised religion measured against such a cataclysm as the war. "Can patter out their hasty orisons" This line means the orisons, which are a part of church services, are irrelevant. "Disabled" is also like "Dulce et Decorum Est" and "Anthem for Doomed Youth" because it attacks the generals of the war. "Before he threw away his knees" The phrase "threw away" is also used to describe throwing away rubbish. It is as if no one cared that a young man has lost his legs and arms. It is very quiet, bitter anger. All three of the poems studied are attacks to someone. It can therefore be seen that Wilfred Owen despises all people who wish the war to continue and all people who think the war is a something triumphant From this essay it can be seen that Wilfred Owen expresses his feelings of anger, bitterness and sadness towards the war, in his poetry. In each of the poems studied, in some way or another, Wilfred Owen attacks someone, whether it be the people at home, taken in by the propaganda machine, or the government who have the power to stop the war, but don't. This is why Owen wrote his poetry. He wanted to put an end to the war. Christopher Bell 10C ...read more.

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