"Dulce Et Decorum Est" By Wilfred Owen And "The Hero" By Siegfried Sassoon.

984 words - 4 pages

Good day ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the Bilinga Youth Literacy Festival, today I will be talking about two of the greatest poems about war, by two of the greatest war poets, Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon. First I would like to talk a bit about the backgrounds of the two poets so that when I'm finished you may decide whether this poetry is still relevant to modern youth.The first poet I would like to talk about is Wilfred OwenWilfred Owen was born the 18th of March 1893 in Oswestry in the United Kingdom. He was the eldest of four children and brought up at an Anglican school, the influence of his education remains visible in his poems and in their themes: sacrifice, Biblical language, his description of Hell.He enlisted in the Artists' Rifles on 21st October 1915 and went through 14 months of training in England before he was drafted to France in 1917, the worst war winter. His total war experience will be rather short: four months, from which only five weeks in the line. On this is based all his war poetry. After battle experience, he went to Craiglockhart War Hospital near Edinburgh.In August 1918 Owen returned to France. The butchery was ended on 11th November 1918 at 11 o'clock. Seven days before Owen had been killed in one of the last vain battles of this war.The other poet I would like to talk about is Siegfried Sassoon.Siegfried Sassoon was born in Weirleigh, Kent, England on September 8, 1886 into a leisurely society of country living.Sassoon enlisted in the military at the age of 28 just before the draft and was eventually assigned to the Royal Welch FusiliersThe war was hard on Siegfried and his family. Early in the war Sassoon's brother Hamo was fatally wounded at Gallipoli. Siegfried took vengeance for his brother's death by involving himself in brave, sometimes almost suicidal deeds against the Germans. A short leave from the front helped to calm him and later as the war dragged on, he experienced a sense of total disgust with the conflict and this shows up frequently in most of his war poetry, which is still famous today.The following poem was written by Wilfred Owen and is the first one on your sheet. Its called Dulce Et Decorum Est.Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,Till on the haunting flares we turned our backsAnd towards our distant rest began to trudge.Men marched asleep. Many had lost their bootsBut limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hootsOf tired, outstripped Five-Nines that dropped behind.Gas! GAS! Quick, boys! - An ecstasy of fumbling,Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;But someone still was yelling out and stumbling,And flound'ring like a man in fire or lime...Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light,As under a...

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