“Totoy’s War” by Luz Maranan, “State of Siege” by Eric Gumalinda, and “War is Kind” by Stephen Crane
Throughout our history, both recorded and unrecorded, there have been countless violent battles fought. From small skirmishes to full on declarations of war, humans have been involved with battling on another for all the reasons that they have. The only thing alarming is that, as time and technology progresses, the number of casualties and collateral damage have been increasing as well. In addition, the implications to the human mind, brought upon by the excessive violence, can be equally damaging. With that being said, the psychological implications brought upon by war can be reflected in several art forms, such as poetry.
War poems usually deals with how the persona of a particular poem, reacts to life altering events such as war. “Totoy’s War” by Luz Maranan, “State of Siege” by Eric Gumalinda, and “War is Kind” by Stephen Crane are just three examples of the many war poems that exist. Each of the poems conveys different messages, as well as utilizing different methods to convey the said message, despite having one common theme.
The Fear of the Children
“Totoy’s War” by Luz Maranan is easier to read poem, as compared to the other two poems mentioned. The poem is about the fear that people have during war times and how it affects various people, of all ages. The poem itself has no subliminal message that it wants to portray to its readers and is very direct with the matter of war – no use of metaphors, ironies, or difficult figurative language, whatsoever. The dramatic situation in the poem is that a child, Totoy, came to the persona asking “Is there a war?” (Maranan 2) with fear in his eyes. The persona then goes into c...
... middle of paper ...
..., as well as the readers. Stephen Crane’s poem in contrast, uses irony to try and convey the message about the ugliness war brings. Eric Gumalinda’ poem on the other hand, is the one that is sort of off-tangent to the two. This poem in particular, shows the readers a glimpse of what is happening on a damaged person’s mind. It shows the readers a first-hand view on what people during war times could do, and all their intentions.
Crane, Stephen. "War Is Kind by Stephen Crane." About.com Poetry. About.com, n.d. Web. 7 Feb. 2015. .
Gumalinda, Eric. Lyrics from a Dead Language poems 1977-1991. Manila: Anvil Publishing Inc., 1991. Print.
Santiago, Lillia. In the Name of the Mother: 100 Years of Philippine Feminist Poetry (1898-1989). Manila: University of the Philippines Press , 2002. Print.
Throughout the history of war poetry, no aspect of war can be said to feature more prominently than the representation of death and dying. While such representations are constant in their inclusion in war texts, the nature of the representation varies greatly, be it as a noble act for ones country, or as the defining negative of war. Poems such as Brooke’s ‘The Soldier’ and Seaman’s ‘Pro Patria’ are strong examples of the former; while others such as ‘Dolce et decorum est’ by Owen and ‘The Rear Guard’ by Sassoon best exemplify the latter. The question remains however as to why these representations of death and dying differ so, and whether there is a relevant relationship between the type of depiction and the time period or conflict, as well as the author’s proximity to death’s harsh reality.
The physical effects of war overwhelm the naïve causing pain and suffering. Initially, war entangles the lives of youth, destroying the innocence that they experience as an aspect of their life. The girl “glid[ing] gracefully down the path” (1) and the boy “rid[ing] eagerly down the road” (9) have their enjoyable realities striped by the harshness of war. Likewise, war enters women’s lives creating turmoil. The woman who works “deftly in the fields” ( ) no longer is able to experience the offerings of life. The “wire cuts,” ( ) pushing her away from the normal flow of life. In addition, man undergoes tragic obstacles as a result of war. “A man walks nobly and alone” ( ) before the horrible effects of war set in on his life causing disruptions. War enters the life of man destroying the bond man shares with his beloved environment ( ).
US Clergyman Henry Emerson once said, “The tragedy of war is that it uses man's best to do man's worst." And I agree with him. What is it about the human race and war anyway? Well, Carl von Clausewitz also said that, "To secure peace is to prepare for war." I also agree with that. War is an ironic subject at times. And war can also be a way of life for some people. Walt Whitman and Stephen Crane’s poems have no similarities and they both have different ways in writing about war.
This opening paragraph is a simple, poetic version of the main theme behind All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque. The point of the story is to show that war is not romantic, glorious, or fantastic. In fact, those words could not be further from the truth. War is a disgusting competition of human instinct, fought by the wrong people. It brings out the worst in everyone; it destroys their compassion, honesty, and ideals. The beginning chapters of All Quiet on the Western Front are devoted to showing that warfare hardens soldiers against true emotions. Their main priority is survival, second is comfort, followed by gain.
As can be seen, Paul Boyer, Tim O’Brien, and Kenneth W. Bagby, convey the notion that war affects the one’s self the most. Through the use of literary devices: tone, mood, pathos, and imagery, these 3 authors portray that war affects a person’s self most of all. War is not only a battle between two opposing sides, but it can also be a mental conflict created within a person. Although war is able to have an effect on physical relationships between family, friends, or even society, conflict within oneself is the most inevitable battle one must face during war times.
“Now every road and highway…was littered with the corpses of human beings and animals…the wounded were left to die. Children ran frantically, shrieking for their mothers…there was no food, water, soap, or medical supplies. Like polluted waters became carriers of disease (Kasenkina 93).” This is a typical scene of war demonstrated in literary works. In literature war is a very common, yet important subject and it is generally demonstrated in plays, short stories, and novels. Some of the pieces of literature in where war is shown include: The Crucible by Arthur Miller, “The Minister’s Black Veil” by Nathaniel Hawthorne, “The Story of an Hour” by Kate Chopin, and Leap to Freedom by Kasenkina. In these pieces of literature war is shown as a horrid event that always has both physically and psychologically bad outcomes. In many literary works including the ones mentioned above the good outcomes in war are misrepresented and suppressed by the bad outcomes in war.
The speaker in "War is Kind" is an officer who grapples with his own conscience in an internal monologue. He is struggling with his feelings of guilt over leading younger soldiers into battle and his military responsibility to cover up the truth. One way of interpreting this poem is to consider that the officer is attending a traditional military funeral for one of his soldiers. This can be seen in the way the stanzas are set up in the poem. In the first, third, and fifth stanzas, the speaker appears to be consoling the weeping loved ones of a soldier who died in the war. This would normally be the job of an officer who leads a regiment into battle. Consoling the family members is a powerful tool for conveying the reality of war. Addressing loved ones of a deceased soldier illustrates the loss and suffering to be dealt with by those left behind. He speaks to a "maiden" (1), a "babe" (12), and a "mother" (23), thereby, conveying one of the most significant truths about wa...
War holds the approximate greatness of a black hole, and is alike one in many ways. From times immemorial writers have used imagery, language appealing to one or more of the 5 senses, irony, things that go against what is expected, and structure, the way the story is written, to protest war. This form of protest has most likely existed since any point in which the existence of both war and written language intersected, and were a part of human life. Through the use of imagery, irony and structure, writers protest war.
From sunrise to sunset, day after day, war demolishes men, cities, and hope. War has an effect on soldiers like nothing else, and sticks with them for life. The damage to a generation of men on both sides of the war was inestimable. Both the novel All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque, and the poem “I Have a Rendezvous with Death,” by Alan Seeger, demonstrate the theme of a lost generation of men, mentally and physically, in war through diction, repetition, and personification.
War and its ramifications for those who are unfortunately entangled in it, is an issue that has fueled both political discussion and literary exploration throughout the previous century. Underived, authentic accounts of the experience and effects of war, from those who have served in it, can be especially enlightening for the majority of society who have had the fortune of not being intimately familiar with war. Through the examination of poems and stories written by soldiers, who were inspired by their involvement in conflict, one can obtain a greater understanding of this gruesome aspect of life, without having to directly experience it. Similarly, soldier turned poet, Bruce Weigl, has contributed his perspective on war through his literary
Although war is often seen as a waste of many lives, poets frequently focus on its effect on individuals. Choose two poems of this kind and show how the poets used individual situations to illustrate the impact of war.
The simple definition of war is a state of armed competition, conflict, or hostility between different nations or groups; however war differs drastically in the eyes of naive children or experienced soldiers. Whether one is a young boy or a soldier, war is never as easy to understand as the definition. comprehend. There will inevitably be an event or circumstance where one is befuddled by the horror of war. For a young boy, it may occur when war first breaks out in his country, such as in “Song of Becoming.” Yet, in “Dulce et Decorum Est” it took a man dying in front of a soldier's face for the soldier to realize how awful war truly is. Both “Song of Becoming” and “Dulce et Decorum Est” are poems about people experiencing the monstrosity of war for the first time. One is told from the perspective of young boys who were stripped of their joyful innocence and forced to experience war first hand. The other is from the perspective of a soldier, reflecting on the death of one of his fellow soldiers and realizing that there is nothing he can do to save him. While “Song of Becoming” and “Dulce et Decorum Est” both focus on the theme of the loss of innocence, “Song of Becoming” illustrates how war affects the lives of young boys, whereas “Dulce et Decorum Est” depicts the affect on an experienced soldier.
War is a patriotic act where one seeks the determination to lead their country. It can be viewed noble, cruel, inhumane and can make an individual a hero or a criminal. It effects everyone in a society, hoping their loved one is safe whether fighting in the trenches or waiting at home. It has led to severe individuals suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder. Two poems in war literature “Anthem for Doomed Youth” by Wilfred Owen and “Facing it” by Yusef Komunyakaa, the authors’ different perspectives will be presented. Owen portrays war as a horror battlefield not to be experienced and the glorious feeling to fight for one’s country. Komunyakaa on the other hand shows an African American that serves in Vietnam War and visits the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Wall. The poets’ choice of diction, setting of battlefield and various uses of poetic devices create a desired effect.
Tolstoy is regarded by some as the greatest writer about war (Bayley 16). He includes details in the military scenes of War and Peace. Many battles and army movements are described, but the details included are not militaristic. Instead, Tolstoy depicts individual soldiers and their actions in an effective attempt to give the reader a glimpse into the internal workings of war (Dragomirov 155). Tolstoy also includes not only battle scenes, but also scenes depiciting "the homeliness of military life, and the way in which soldiers pass their time, even in situations of danger...." (Bayley 16). However, despite the war scenes included in War and Peace, it is not really a book about war.