Introduction Paragraph 1 In his poem, Strange Meeting, Owen recreates the horror of war through his shocking and realistic account of the experiences faced by soldiers on the battlefields during World War One. “And by his smile, I knew that sullen hall, - By his dead smile I knew we stood in hell”. Owen has used first person and a pararhyme to reinforce the brutality and horrors of war. Owen came to the realisation, by talking to this man, that no one there was truly alive, breathing or not breathing. What mattered was the truth of war and what he felt he must share and let people know.
Sassoon’s poetry described the horrors of the war and how disgusting it is. Two poems which show the perspective of war is: Firstly, Counter-Attack, which describes how war is like; and secondly, died of wounds, which show the condition of war. The poems relate to the feeling and emotion war creates. Also it shows how horrible war is. The techniques that Sassoon has used in the poems are: imagery, simile, metaphor and onomatopoeia.
Mental Cases was written to demonstrate the mental consequences of war on participating soldiers in World War I. The subjects of this poem are the inmates in a military hospital. The poem displays a part of the war that to some civilians can be considered worse than losing your life, losing your mind due to shellshock. Owen describes how they are now forced to re-live the terrible acts that they have witnessed on the battlefield. The mood of the poem is one of fury, this is shown throughout the poem with the use of imagery.
Main ideas in War Poetry The main idea in war poetry, written during World War One – 1914-18, is the harsh reality of war. Poets such as Wilfred Owen use the language techniques of simile, rhyme, repetition and personification to help convey the main idea. Owen uses techniques to paint a grim picture of what war was like and how it affected people. Through this, we see that war is often glorified, thus Owen was able to counter the glorification of war. After reading war poems we are able to get a true idea of how horrific war was and learn of its negative consequences.
Owen's use of diction and figurative language emphasizes his point, showing that war is horrid and devastating. The use of very graphic imagery also adds to his argument. Through the intense content of the poem "Dulce Et Decorum Est," Wilfred Owen shows the reader the horrors of war. Owen compared the soldiers to animals in order to bring out their suffering. "Knock-kneed" is a condition that makes knees hit together when walking.
Owen used his poems to deliver the truth about war and change the views of society at that time. He used graphic and gruesome imagery about the horrors of war in order to illuminate his feelings. The horrors of war are most vividly and strikingly captured in the poem ‘Dulce et Decorum Est.’ Owen attacks the reader with a barrage of detailed, gruesome, descriptions of life at war. He uses this technique of imagery to force the reader to visualize the truth about war. Owen also seeks to expose the betrayal of the authorities throughout poems such as ‘Disabled’ and ‘The parable of the old man and the young.’ He expresses how they acted with a disregard for the lives of their countries young men.
Owen compares soldiers fighting in war to sick old men because it shows that soldiers are like outcasts from society. At the top left of the poster, the image shown represents the difficulty and the terrible physical outcomes, soldiers found travelling on ground particularly in sludges as Wilfred Owen states in the first stanza: “Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge” The use of the word Knock-kneed is alliteration for emphasis, a hard, staccato sound to echo the harsh mood of these lines and soldier’s misery. It stresses echo the brutality of the soldiers’ destruction, their transformation from healthy young men into ‘beggars’ and ‘hags’. The use of the word coughing compares men to sick women, showing how they are unrecognisable; they have lost their masculinity, youth, health and therefore are now deemed to be outcast’s within the society. The word sludge is onomatopoeia to imply how heavy and difficult the ground is to cross for soldiers.
Ones who died from these toxic gases were in a painful and miserable death. The ones that survived will never forget these images they saw and horrific experiences they had went through. Through Wilfred Owen’s imagery and Irony’s in his poem we can detect the tone, “Dulce et Decorum Est” is a horrific battle scene from World War I. The strong use of figurative language helps to interpret the real meaning of war. In the first line, "Bent double, like old beggars under sacks”, shows us that the troops are so tired that they look like old beggars, slouching from being so drowsy.
This is effective as it shows how much slush and mud was in the trenches. Both poems use nightmare underwater imagery, in ‘Dulce...’ Owen describes a soldier as he starts “drowning” under a “green sea” when he is overcome by gas. This creates a disturbing psychological image for the reader and conveys how toxic the gas was. Similarly, in ‘The Sentry’ the soldier’s body is described as “sploshing in the flood”, this representation conveys the harsh environment the soldiers had to live in. Repetition is also used in both poems.
The mention of the coughing portrays the many illnesses that soldiers suffered from in the trenches. Although both of them present the war and soldiers as unheroic and cowardly, they do so in very different ways. The style of Owen's poetry, which is much longer and contains more description than that of Sassoon's, allows him to expand on the main points and simple description that he experienced during the war. In his poem, he describes in graphic and horrific detail the death of a man who was not able to fit his helmet in time during a gas attack. He uses words such as “flound’ring”, “guttering, choking, drowning”.