‘Dulce et Decorum est’ by Wifred Owen Katriona Downie Wilfred Owen’s “Dulce et Decorum Est” is a magnificent, and horrific, description of a gas attack suffered by a group of soldiers in France in World War 1. One of his friends in his group is unable to get his helmet on in time and suffers horribly that Owen had to witness. This was an image he found extremely difficult to get out his head and kept coming back to him in his reoccurring nightmares. He writes this poem from the trenches while serving in war. Through his rhythms, dramatic description, and raw images, Owen seeks to convince that the horror of war far outweighs the patriotic clichés of those who glamorize war and increases my understanding of war and the horrors that come with it.
This is good word choice because it shows us how the men are suffering and that they are tired. Also “coughing like hags” shows us that the soldiers look ill and as old as a hag who is an old, dirty witch, but they are really young men. In Verse one there is a good simile which also describes the soldiers: “Bent double like old beggars under sacks.” This is a good simile because it emphasises the heavy equipment they are carrying and “beggars” suggests how dirty and unhealthy the soldiers are. Secondly as well as making such comparisons, Owen’s effective word choice strengthen the impact of the poem on the reader. At the start of this poem the poet uses the word “Trudge”.
Owen then goes on to describe how the mental trauma becomes worse. “In all my dreams, before my helpless sight, he plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.” This tells us the soldiers mind is haunted by the sight of his fellow soldier dying from the horrible gas. He is dramatizing this scene some time after it occurred, and his dreams are still filled with this unforgettable sight, which becomes a regular nightmare for the soldier. Wilfred Owen wrote this to shock the reader, and to make the reader think about what
Wilfred Owen's Dulce Et Decorum Est The poem is one of the most powerful ways to convey an idea or opinion. Intense imagery and compelling content in a poem gives a reader the exact feeling the author wanted. The poem "Dulce Et Decorum Est," an anti-war poem by Wilfred Owen, makes great use of these devices. This poem is effective because it combines both the mechanical and emotional parts of poetry. Owen's use of diction and figurative language emphasizes his point, showing that war is horrid and devastating.
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.
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.
In the first line he starts off by using a hyperbole to show how badly the soldiers were affected: like old beggars under sacks, this shows that even though these men were supposed to be the ‘cream of the crop’ so to speak, they were being compared to beggars under sacks. Owen continues with this idea: Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, the alliterative Knock-kneed, slows down the tempo of the poem greatly, there is also a simile used here which compares them to witches. This creates an image of old women trudging through the thick mud – it also connects with what shape the soldiers health was in, for example coughing like hags refers to how critically ill they were as well. He goes on to say: till on haunting flares we turned our backs, in this line Owen uses both personification and a sense of hopelessness to show their misery, firstly he personifies the flares making the statement more effective. Secondly, by saying we turned our backs, it shows that these soldiers – who at the start of the war would have been full of enthusiasm and spunk, had it all drained from them by the war.
There were also a lot of gas attacks. Owen really tries to get the reader to understand how bad it was by using horrid imaginary by telling us how tired the soldiers were by writing ‘Men march asleep’ and ‘Drunk with fatigue’ and of his description of watching a soldier dying because he couldn’t get his gas mask on in time of a gas attack. Owen poem is so descriptive that when reading it, you can imagine it in your mind playing like a film whilst reading it. The poem begins with the simile ‘Bent double like old sacks, knock-kneed coughing like hags’ we imagine the soldiers walking slowly like the elderly due to tiredness, and bent double due to all the equipment that they carried at the time with the sounds of five-nines exploding around them. ‘Coughing like hags’ the conditions was not great in the trenches in World War 1, it was full of diseases and the weather conditions would make fighting a great deal harder.
Dulce et Decorum Est Written Explanation War is often depicted as glorious and heroic however it deceives by being a connotation of hell! In the bottom right of the poster, the image shown is comparing the soldier on the left to an old man. This comparison is shown in the opening lines of the poem as Owen states: “Bent double, like old beggars under sacks” This is a dramatic opening to the poem which through the use of power visual image shows the pain that the soldier is going throughout war and the inability to move. The soldier is not fit, healthy and glorious like the propaganda posters (on the left) showed. Owen compares soldiers fighting in war to sick old men because it shows that soldiers are like outcasts from society.
Unlike other authors, Owen’s purpose was to reveal the awful truths of war and let us see past what was said to be glorious. His poems ‘Dulce et Decorum est ‘ and ‘Disabled’ tell of his personal experiences of battle and how war continues to inflict pain upon returned soldiers. Similes and metaphors are two language features Owen used that helped me understand the important idea of the true horrors of war, which is worth learning about today. In ‘Dulce et Decorum est’ one language feature used was similes, displaying the awful scene of physically drained men and a gruesome gas attack which depicted the important idea of the true horrors of war. The poem begins with the vivid simile “bent double, like old beggars under sacks”.