This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Beautifully Crafted Poetry For Ugly Moments In Time

1600 words - 6 pages

Whether there is a soldier fighting in the heart of war or a city dweller observing the death of civilians, poetry that describes a period of war often portrays it as damaging and destructive. In "Dulce et Decorum Est," Wilfred Owen takes a soldier through trench warfare that ends in the death of a fellow fighter. In "Leningrad Cemetery, Winter of 1941," Sharon Olds has her narrator recount memories of a civilian urban centre during World War II. While both poets use similar techniques to convey the pain and anguish felt during times of war, Wilfred Owen is successful at constructing a more effective poem.

An important aspect of literature is the position of the narrator. In "Dulce et Decorum Est," Wilfred Owen uses the first person--point of view of a soldier fighting in the war. I believe that by doing so, he makes it easier to represent war as gruesome and horrifying. The poem is able to communicate ideas about war while maintaining a level of believability because the main character is someone who has experienced the thoughts and ideas being conveyed. Even though, as a reader, it is important to question the narrator, Wilfred Owen's experience, having fought during World War I, adds validity to the poem. The soldier in the poem suggests that it is easy for people who have not experienced war to believe that fighting for your country is proper and honorable. He feels, however that these people are in no place to do so because they have never been subjected to the pain and suffering that soldiers have experienced. When he says things like "If in some smothering dreams you to could pace/ Behind the wagon" (17-18) or "If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood" (21) and "My friend, you would not tell with such high zest" (25) the soldier addresses the reader and blatantly separates those who have experienced war from those who have not. He makes it clear though that if you have experience in combat, the experience would make it hard to argue that it is romantic and noble to die for your country.

Owen's use of punctuation and his cacophonic word choices serve to enforce distressing feeling of war. War itself, with random explosions, gunfire, gas attacks and so on, is unpredictable. The way Owen crafts "Dulce et Decorum Est," parallels this feeling. He uses commas in the middle of the lines, dashes, hyphens, exclamation points and periods to emphasize certain ideas and images. He also makes use of enjambment, having several ideas flow from one line to the next. By doing this, he also makes his own poem unpredictable. It does not allow for a peaceful rhythmic read. "Gas! Gas! Quick, boys! - An ecstasy of fumbling" (line 9) is one example of punctuation used to emphasize the unpredictable and brutal nature of battle. The staccato feeling from the exclamation points captures the fear and panic felt by the soldiers. "He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning" (16) is an example of comma use with carefully chosen words. Owen...

Find Another Essay On Beautifully Crafted Poetry for Ugly Moments in Time

"The search for time in Yoknapatawpha County"

2289 words - 10 pages torment, anguish and pain of former life. A life that parallel’s the South, after the transition of time, in William Faulkner’s mind. William Faulkner, born Septermber 25, 1897, in New Albany, Mississippi, United States; died July 6, 1962, in Byhalia, Mississippi, United States, had an interesting life and a talent for writing. “He dropped out of high school in 1915 to work as a clerk in his grandfather’s bank, began writing poetry, and submitted

My time working for peace in Ireland

1000 words - 4 pages working in a former British army base built in 1798 during the rebellion in Co. Wicklow. Half of it was so dilapidated after decades of disuse that everyone was accommodated in the great hall which was located at the end of a corridor of rooms for visiting guests and groups staying over an extended period of time. I was not involved in this matter; my brief was to work with a group of loyalist youths from East Belfast in danger of becoming recruits to

It's Time for Uniforms in American Schools

1087 words - 4 pages It's Time for Uniforms in American Schools Works Cited Missing School uniforms have been debated in the public school system for what seem like fifty years. Understand the constructive views that most administrations envision, you start to recognize the goals associated with having students wear them; however, there is a flip side. The unenthusiastic views that are associated with school uniforms present an equally intriguing question

Quest for Eternity in the Poetry of Dickinson

3711 words - 15 pages Quest for Eternity in the Poetry of Dickinson       Over the past few decades, a considerable number of comments have been made on the idea of eternity in Emily Dickinson's poetry. The following are several examples: Robert Weisbuch's Emily Dickinson's Poetry (1975), Jane Donahue Eberwein's Dickinson: Strategies of Limitation (1985), Dorothy Huff Oberhaus' Emily Dickinson's Fascicles: Method and Meaning (1995), and James McIntosh's

The Heroism of Dying for One's Country in Poetry

1589 words - 6 pages The Heroism of Dying for One's Country in Poetry The Volunteer is a Pro-War poem written by Herbert Asquith. Asquith uses roman imagery to invoke a feeling of greatness and honour. Asquith begins his poem by describing the miserable, mundane life of a clerk, working in a 'city grey'. He opens with the words 'Here lies' that are normally used to begin writing on a gravestone. This 'epitaph' - style opening gives the idea that the clerk

An essay on the on four defining moments in Canadain history; Includes: battle for Vimy Ridge, Battle of The Atlantic, Dieppe, and D-Day

1287 words - 5 pages My first defining moment in Canadian History is the battle of Vimy Ridge that took place in World War One. This battle involved Canadian forces to take part in an overall ten-day campaign. The reason this battle was a defining moment for Canada is because Vimy Ridge was the turning point of the "Great War", and it was the Canadians who captured the ridge. Also Vimy Ridge was the first time ever in Canadian history that all four of the Canadian

Time concept in a Rose for Emily by William Faulkner

1016 words - 5 pages , talking of Miss Emily as if she had been a contemporary of theirs, believing that they had danced with her and courted her” From this passage it becomes evident that the “old men” are a group of elders that speak collectively for the town and thus make up the unusual narrative throughout. perhaps, confusing time with its mathematical progression, as the old do,. The disorderly , slightly contradictory recollection of the townsfolk is voiced in a

Language, Action and Time in Samuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot

2218 words - 9 pages difficult task: to pass the time. This subject is brought up at the end of most of the little episodes that constitute the play. Interacting with Pozzo and Lucky or simply conversing among themselves are not moments to be appreciated in themselves, but each is merely a "diversion" that helps to pass the time, for time poses a serious problem for them. Time, in the chronological sense, is used to measure the duration of actions, but because actions are

Use of Time in Waiting for Godot and Mrs. Dalloway

838 words - 4 pages , time can also be seen as an underlying theme that is significant because it questions and influences the structure of the story including the characters actions, dialogues, or story's plot, setting, etc. Samuel Beckett's "Waiting for Godot" and Virginia Woolf’s “Mrs. Dalloway” use time to show cylical patterns which influence many different aspects of charecters. "Waiting for Godot" is a play written by Samuel Beckett, in which two

The Scrambling of Time in Faulkner's A Rose for Emily

1502 words - 6 pages The Scrambling of Time in Faulkner's A Rose for Emily In, A Rose for Emily, Faulkner uses the element of time to enhance details of the setting and vice versa. By avoiding the chronological order of events of Miss Emily's life, Faulkner first gives the reader a finished puzzle, and then allows the reader to examine this puzzle piece by piece, step by step. By doing so, he enhances the plot and presents two different perspectives of time

The Role of Time in "A Rose for Emily"

1376 words - 6 pages Benjamin Franklin once said, "You may delay, but time will not." This quote defines the character Miss. Emily Grierson in "A Rose for Emily" written by William Faulkner. The time and chronology sets up the story's theme for passage of time. Time is everything and it is evidenced by Miss. Emily Grierson's physical, mental, and political surroundings.Miss. Emily Grierson grew up in Jefferson, Mississippi. Her father was a confederate soldier and a

Similar Essays

The Moments In Time Essay

563 words - 2 pages darling.' 'Thank you daddy.'" The man and woman walk arm-in-arm down the sidewalk as the thief is left there on the sidewalk, to freeze. People walk by paying no attention, for he has no friends or family to help him in his time of trouble.

Time And Change In Poetry Essay

1836 words - 7 pages Time and Change in Poetry Comparing and discussing two poems written by two different people in two different times on the subject of time and change. Time and Change I will be comparing and discussing two poems written by two different people in two different times on the subject of time and change. The subject time and change is part of our everyday lives and it affects our behaviour and attitudes. The first poem I will be

Time And Place In Langston Hughes' Poetry

1233 words - 5 pages . In the 1920s, there was a movement in the black community that took place in Harlem, New York. This movement was a happy time for the black community, there was an uprising in the arts, poetry, theater, music and more. During this time there was an opportunity for African Americans to express their love and appreciation for their race. They moved away from the way they were taught to live from the white American community to spread their hopes

Time, Life, And God In John Milton's Poetry

1525 words - 6 pages Time, Life, and God in John Milton's Poetry John Milton's poems, "How Soon Hath Time" and "When I Consider How My Light Is Spent" both focus on life and how the time we are given is or should be spent. Milton uses the word "How" in both the titles and I cant help but wonder "Is there something to examine there?" How by itself is a question of is it possible, and if so then what needs to be done to make it possible. It, in this case is time