Wilfred Owen Essay

Wilfred Owen
"Wilfred Owen’s poetry is shaped by an intense focus on extraordinary human experiences."

Wilfred Owen’s poetry definitely has an ‘intense’ focus on extraordinary human experiences and this reoccurring theme is seen throughout his poems. Wilfred Owen was a war poet who enlisted in the war in 1915 because it was considered ‘brave’, ‘courageous’ and ‘honourable’ to fight and die for one’s country. His poetry is all about the suffering and pitiful experiences of men who go to war. Owen’s poetry is very graphic, comprising substantially of descriptive imagery and political connotations.   Owen portrayed the harsh reality, suffering and brutality of war. The aims of his poetry were to inform, awaken and enlighten the reader about the truth of war. Throughout his poems, Owen uses a wide variety of language techniques to enhance the message being conveyed. Techniques such as similes, metaphors, imagery, irony and personification can be seen in Owen’s poems “Dulce Et Decorum Est” and “Disabled”.

Within "Dulce Et Decorum Est" the poet utilises a variety of powerful poetic devices in order to depict death in war as a brutal and horrifying experience. Owen was writing to protest against the atrocious conditions to which “children ardent for some desperate glory” were being sent to war, and for this, he used extremely graphic and striking imagery to evoke emotions of disgust and repulsion into the reader, which would hopefully bring them to understand and appreciate Owen’s viewpoint.
Alliteration serves to draw the attention of the reader, as expressed in: "And watch the white eyes writhing in his face," which creates a stark and confronting image within the reader's mind. Further, in "his hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin" it is through the use of simile that the poet arouses the sympathy of the responder as they witness the grotesque nature of such a death. Owen attacks any preconceptions of war being a “walk in the park”. The use of explicit...