Essay Dulce et Decorum est by Wilfred Owen

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Dulce et Decorum est by Wilfred Owen

"Dulce et decorum est" is a poem written by the poet Wilfred Owen during the First World War. It was written to portray the reality of war. In it he describes the horrors he witnessed as a soldier from the front line of battle. The aim of the poem was to tell people that Jessie Pope, a poet who was encouraging young men to go to war because it was glorious, was wrong.

The poem starts with soldiers marching away from the battlefield. They have just been in battle and are heading back to their rest areas:

"bent double"

Owen describes the way in which the soldiers are walking. They are bent double with exhaustion and fatigue. They walk in a crooked
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The troop swore as they moved through the debris:

"we cursed through the sludge"

They curse the fact that they have to drag their feet through the mud and waste of war. As they have to drag their feet through the slush on the ground it will slow down the process of getting to the rest areas.

In the third line the poet describes the flares as "haunting" to the soldiers. The flares that Owen describes were the flares sent up to light the battlefield that the soldiers have turned their backs on. The word suggests that the men are struggling to escape their memories of war but are constantly being reminded of it. It is as if they are making an effort to turn their backs on the horror.

Line four tells of the men,

"trudging to their distant rest"

It must seem like an eternity before the soldiers can finally relax. However the line can be interpreted in different ways. It could mean that although the rest station is not that far away it seems like it because of the slow pace of the soldiers. The words " distant rest" could also mean the final rest because it might seem as though the soldiers were close to death, which some of them were.

The word "trudge" is used to emphasise the slow, monotonous pace in which the soldiers are working. "Trudge" is a more effective word than "walk" or "march" because
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