A study of war poetry focussing on "The Drum", "The Two Mothers" and "Dulce et Decorum est"

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A study of war poetry focussing on “The Drum”, “The Two Mothers” and “Dulce et Decorum est”

        Poems and verse have been recited for countless centuries.  The main reason poets wrote and recited poems was because they understood poems as being the best way of expressing their feelings and putting their emotions across.  Poets felt that by using poems they could give a clearer image of an event or topic.

        The topic that we are investigating in poetry is war.  War poems have been recited from the earliest recorded times and the theme of war has had a deep influence on many poets from these times.  The early romantic view of war was that it was noble and heroic.  Jessie Pope was a poet who agreed with the romantic view of war and believed that it was brave and honourable to go and fight for your country.  However such poets as Owen and Sassoon came along and expressed the idea that war was wrong and seemed to be extremely critical war.  They appear to disagree with the pressure that was being put on young men to join the army believing it to be unfair and unjust.

        Within my study I am going to try and show the conflicting attitudes that poets had to the topic of war.  The first poem I will write about is going to be a pre 1900 poem; secondly I will discuss a pro-war and to conclude I will write about an anti-war poem.  After haven written about these threes different poems I will try and show the contrasts and similarities between them and the poets attitudes to war.  To finish I will give a personal opinion about war and the three poems.

        My first poem, which is a pre 1900 poem, is “The Drum” written by the poet John Scott who was a Quaker, one of the first groups who were opposed to any kind of fighting and violence.  He wrote “The Drum” in 1782; a time when people where beginning to question the need for war.

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        Scott begins his poem by telling us how he hates the sound of the drum and how that the beat just keeps going on and on.  “I hate that drum’s discordant sound, parading round, round and round.”  John Scott this line in the next stanza to try and give the impression that the “discordant” sound of the drum is almost driving him mad.  In the next two lines Scott tries to show the effect that the beating drum has on the “thoughtless youth.”  He describes the drum as a war call which is trying to tempt men out of their ...

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