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Wilfred Owen War Poetry

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Who is Wilfred Owen? Is he a poet writer or a powerful soldier who defended his land from the enemy in WW1? Wilfred Owen is a British poet of WW1 and also he was an officer in the army who died for his beloved country, ironically few days before the war ended The melancholy theme of lost youth and surrendered innocence as, well as the image of blunted grotesqueness of war find expressions in his poems. Most important his poetry is described in his words as "my subject is war, and the pity of war". Owen displays a set of themes throughout his poetry, to show the reality of war. The three main poems that Owen portrays, this is through "Anthem for Doomed Youth", "Dulce Et Decorum Est", and "Futility". The main themes that he uses are the waste of war and lives, horrific nature of war, and also how it is not honourable to die for your own country. Owen successfully imitates this through various poetic techniques across his poems, such as alliteration, metaphor, personification and onomatopoeia, just to name a few.

"Anthem for doom youth" is one of the poems which describe "distinctive ideas are at the heart of all poetry" this poem is in the form of a sonnet consisting of 14 lines. The first stanza is the octet of 8 lines which re-creates the sounds and images on the battle field. Whereas the second stanza is the sestet which focuses on the loved ones left behind to mourn the death of the soldiers. The title is ironic though positive contrasted with a negative, where "Anthem" is a Christian song of praise used for burial services and "Doom" is fate for the soldiers of which is negative through the failure of death and no chance of survival.

The concept of waste in human life is present in "Anthem for doomed youth" to shock the audiences. Owen describes this as "what passing bells for those who die as cattle?" are using both rhetorical question and simile indicating how society sees these men as a block of sacrifice to die for their country and not as individual man. Which he also uses negative imagery of the slaughter of cattle? Owen uses alliteration to engage his audience "only the shuttering rifle, rapid rattle" and onomatopoeia on "patter" and "shrill" which emphasises both the sounds of war and gunfire also recreates the negative sounds on the battlefield, as this is there "anthem" and Owen suggest that this is their only one. The last technique conveyed by Owen is repetition "no mockeries now for them, no prayers, nor bells" emphasises the idea that the soldiers are denied proper burial ceremonies and there mockery of typical Christian burial rights the soldiers are entitled to. Shows the great number of loss of youth shown in the title "doomed youth"

'Futility' is a fourteen lined poem which describes how "distinctive ideas are at the heart of all poetry". However this poem is not a sonnet, the two separate stanzas, each with seven lines, present the reality of war. 'Futility' explores the emotions of pity and hopelessness that men feel in such situations.

Another issue that is brought by Wilfred Owen is the reality of war and the purpose of life; this is mimicked in 'futility' effectively. Owen portrays this by the uses of colloquial



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