Wilfred Owen's Poetry and Pity of War

3681 Words15 Pages
Wilfred Owen's Poetry and Pity of War Through his poetry Wilfred Owen wished to convey, to the general public, the PITY of war. In a detailed examination of three poems, with references to others, show the different ways in which he achieved this Wilfred Owen was born in Oswestry, 18th March 1893. He was working in France when the war began, tutoring a prominent French family. When the war started he began serving in the Manchester Regiment at Milford Camp as a Lieutenant. He fought on the Western Front for six months in 1917, and was then diagnosed with War Neurosis (shell shock). Because of this he was sent to Craiglockhart Hospital for treatment. In his stay at Craiglockhart Hospital Wilfred Owen met Siegfried Sassoon. Sassoon was also a poet, and the two became good friends. The two friends compared and edited their poems, and Sassoon introduced Wilfred Owen to some publishers. Whilst he was in Craiglockhart he wrote such poems as "Dulce et Decorem Est" and "Anthem for Doomed Youth." He used his poems as a cathartic experience to help him forget and overcome his experiences on the battlefield. Through a detailed examination of the poems Dulce et Decorem Est,Disabled and Anthem for Doomed Youth with reference to other poems by Wilfred Owen, it can be seen that, although he uses different political forms, styles, and devices, and he addresses his readers from different authorial stances, evoking feelings from great anger and bitterness to terrible sadness; the end result is always the same: he shows the pity of war. Dulce et Decorem Est was written by Wilfred Owen whilst he was having treatment at Craiglockhart, it is one of his most famous poems. Stanza one sets the scene. Owen takes his ti... ... middle of paper ... ...there is no glory involved. This poem gets across the madness of war, and that it must not be continued. Owen expresses feelings of bitter hatred for the war, and he lets those feelings out in Dulce et Decorem est. He is angry that war is allowed to be continued, that the public are lied to, and the conditions the soldiers have to cope with. He was in the war himself, he knew what he was talking about. Owen has a very strong use of imagery, which I think helps get across his message. Although sometimes I feel he can be a bit too bitter, and lose the plot slightly, his poetry is extremely effective. He is asking his reader just to take some time to think about the war, ignore the propaganda and see what is really happening. All of this put together conveys the pity of war, by using graphic imagery, metaphors and similes, and often use of onomatopoeia.
Open Document