ma Essya‘Dulce et Decorum” is a poem that was written by Wilfred Owen in 1917, during World War I. It provides a very dramatic description of a gas attack suffered by a group of soldiers. He provides vivid imagery throughout the play. He has a depressed tone throughout that helps the reader understand the hopeless feeling and sad experiences they endured, psychological and physical. In the first stanza he uses a lot of similes and metaphors to help set the scene. Owen uses different tools to help understand the event. The whole play builds up to the last two lines. “ To children ardent for some desperate glory, the old lie: Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori.” In this story, Owen uses multiple aspects of drama. One of the biggest uses
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Owen wants the reader to be surprised at the reality. He is not afraid to show his own feelings through the use of emotional words such as “cursed”, “obscene”, “bitter”, “vile”. In the line “Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,” he again contrasts reality with the idealistic way in which war has been presented, when soldiers are pictured as singing while marching proudly to their glorious deaths.
Owen also uses many poetic devices: Metaphors, similes, and alteration. A good example of a metaphor is when he says, “drunk with fatigue.” At the start of the poem, the soldiers are described as old and crippled, “Bent double, like old beggars under sacks, / Knock-kneed, coughing like hags”. This contrasts with the fact that so many of those who fought in WWI were very young, and it also contrasts with the pictures of handsome, upright soldiers used in propaganda. Owen also makes this contrast by setting these beginning lines against the ending of the poem. In the final lines, he refers to the soldiers as having “innocent tongues” like a child, and notes that the “old lie” of the glory of war is told to and believed by “children ardent for some desperate glory”. Owen wants the reader to feel upset and mad about the