Anthem for Doomed Youth" vs "The Soldier

“Anthem For Doomed Youth” by Wilfred Owen and “The Soldier” by Rupert Brooke are both poems written about World War I. Wilfred Owen wrote “Anthem For Doomed Youth” towards the end of the war. He fought in World War I, and died on the battlefield in 1918. Rupert Brooke wrote “The Soldier” in 1914 when the war had just started. He enlisted in the war, but had little action, and died of blood poisoning in 1915. These poems are both about World War I, but are very different. “Anthem For Doomed Youth” is about the lives of young soldiers being wasted in war, while “The Soldier” is about the honourable death of a soldier fighting for his country. You can see these differences through the use of poetic techniques such as poetic voice, visual imagery and aural imagery.

Although both “Anthem For Doomed Youth” and “The Soldier” were written about World War I, they both clearly have a different perspective of the death of soldiers in the war. Owen sees a more horrific death of the soldiers in the war where the lives of the young men are just wasted as they “die as cattle”, while Brooke sees a more honourable death of an English soldier who is fighting for his country to repay it since his country “bore, shaped”, “Gave, once, her flowers to love, her ways to roam” to him. They both use poetic voice, visual imagery and aural imagery to show their own perspective of the war.

Both Owen and Brooke use poetic voice in their poems to share their perspective with the reader. In “Anthem For Doomed Youth”, Owen uses the persona of an observer of the war. He uses words like “these”, “their” and “them”, instead of “we”, “our” or “us”. In the first stanza of the poem, the tone is very bitter as if he is angry at how the soldiers are dying while the rifles are still shooting with their “rapid rattle”, and how they won’t get any “prayers nor bells” after they die. Then the tone changes when it gets to the second stanza. It becomes more poignant as if he is realizing that the soldiers...