The True Experience of War Revealed in Poetry of Scott and Owen
What we have just witnessed, due war in Iraq, is that war is
devastating, horrific and most of all timeless. The people involved
and soldiers fighting at the battle scene can only ever witness the
cruel reality of war, but they can tell you that it never changes. As
we have gathered from recent documentaries exposing what really
happened in Iraq, we can never truly trust everything the media tells
us. It has always been this way. Media has for centuries and still
clouds our judgment with propaganda and we can never really understand
how horrific war is.
The world will never know how many Iraqis died in the war to oust
Saddam Hussein, in part because the United States adamantly refuses to
estimate the number of people it kills in combat and because gathering
accurate numbers is all but impossible after the Iraqi government's
chaotic collapse. And in part because these murders were barely ever
reported in the news, even though every American and English death was
broadcasted and printed. This information is relevant even to over a
hundred years ago, as the truth was not exposed then either. All we
will ever see is the sugar coated glorious image of war, which has
been created and moulded over hundreds of years by propaganda.
In many wars This concealment of the truth began the writing of some
of the most influential war poets. Soldiers who had once been proud
and joyous in believing that they were dong a brave and honourable job
now contained bitterness and anger. They wrote anti-war poems, which
were not allowed to be published for years after they were written,
expressing their emotions and telling the true story of war.
One of these poets was called John Scott. He was born in Amwell in
1730 and died in 1783. He was of the Quaker religion and was a
pacifist. He was completely against propaganda poets. He also wrote
one of the most famous anti-war poems ever written, 'The Drum' during
the civil war.
We immediately know what Scott's feelings about war are- he hates it.
'I hate that drums discordant sound'. He uses and alliteration, 'drums
discordant', this is effective as it adds a beat to the poem. Even the
rhythm of the poem is drum-like, as seen in the repetition of the word
'round'. This has a hypnotic effect, just like the drum was to new
recruits. Scott is bitter about the drum and criticises its ability to
hypnotise young men, as seen in the phrase,' To thoughtless youth it
pleasure yields.' The poet is saying that the drum almost takes
advantage of the young men. The next two lines, 'To sell their liberty
for charms, of tawdry lace, and glittering arms.' are suggesting that
was takes your freedom for something material and worthless, the
uniform and the weapons. The poet's thoughts here are that what...