A Comparison Of Poems By Wifred Owen

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A Comparison Of Poems By Wifred Owen Essay, Research Paper A comparison of poems by Wilfred Owen: ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ and ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’When I was searching for two poems to compare, I saw these two poems and wanted to explore them to find out how Wifred Owen uses language in different ways to warn future generations of the horror of war.? Wilfred Owen fought in the First World War.? He enlisted as most young men were doing, so that they could protect Britain.? However, in the trenches he realized how horrific the war was and started to make notes about the conditions at first.? Then later in a military hospital he edited and collected these notes into the poetry of Wifred Owen.? ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ is Latin for: It is sweet and fitting (to die

for one’s country).? This line is repeated at the end and by the principles of ‘Chaldeni.’? I know that by repeating a line at the beginning and the end it is most remembered.? This line needs to be remembered as the poem is based on the idea of it as ‘the old lie’ mocking the established belief of nationalism and duty to your country.? Also, it is mocking the established authoritative language of Latin that was reserved for the courts and churches.? The line is sarcastic as Owen has now himself seen a gas attack and a man drown ‘under a green sea’, and has found out that dying out there in a far off land was a waste of a life and is completely pointless. How can it be sweet and fitting to die for your country if no one knows about your death? Similarly the line

from ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’:??????????? ‘What passing bells for those who die as cattle?’raises the same question – Who cares about these men that die deaths like cattle that are just bred for their slaughter? ‘Anthem for Doomed Youth’ is a sonnet.? Sonnets traditionally were happy and about love or an epic tale.? In contrast, Owen uses the rigid structure of a sonnet (two quatrains and a sextet) to contrast with the theme of death and loss.? In the title are the words, ‘Doomed Youth’ which immediately informs the reader that this sonnet isn’t a fairy tale or a happy tale of love but is a distressing poem about the boys who went to war ‘doomed’ never to return. There is a strong marching beat to the poem and as it is entitled ‘anthem’, I believe

that Owen wanted this poem to sound like a funeral march.? And the march is set to a backdrop of sounds from battle.? These sounds include: bells, choirs, bugles, ‘wailing shells and angry guns’ (personification – Owen personifies the guns but the soldiers are not even mentioned.? Owen wants the reader to feel that the artillery in the poem was not being controlled by the soldiers.) ‘Dulce,’ on the other hand, is written in free verse with an alternate line rhyming pattern.? It uses similes such as ‘like old beggars under sacks’ and ‘Bitter as the cud’.? Owen’s choice of language has a supernatural theme.? He uses words such as ‘hags’, ‘devil’, and ‘writhing face’.? These words remind me of a bad nightmare, but this must be what Owen wants the

reader to see.? It might sound like a nightmare but you will be able to wake up from a nightmare whereas he is talking about life in the trenches and there was no way out for these young men, no way just to wake up.? In fact, the only way out for many men was their inevitable death. ‘Anthem’ asks a question at the beginning of each stanza, which it then answers through the rest of that stanza.? Why Owen does this is to approach a poem from a different prospective.? By asking a question, he gets the reader thinking before answering himself.? It causes tension and sadness because the answer to the questions we probably could answer but do not because it is upsetting to remember the dead – especially when the question implies why should it have been them and not you? Whereas