War poetry analysis

1992 WordsAug 11, 20148 Pages
Stage 2 English Communications – War Poetry War has an everlasting effect on the entire world, but the one group of people that have the worst experience are those that are on the frontline – the soldiers. They are often glorified and portrayed to be patriots for their country, which is frequently conveyed through poetry. I disagree with this view, and the following three poems written by past soldiers support my view on war. Siegfried Sassoon is a renowned World War 1 poet who was in service from 1914 to 1917, when he then took a stand against the conduct of war. When Sassoon first began writing his poetry, he did so with an air of romance and sweetness. After becoming horrified by the reality of war, his writing then became…show more content…
He believes it is dark, evil and depressing, and while the soldiers are sent to hell, some remain there whilst others bring pieces of it back home with them. He wants those in the crowd to pray they’ll never know what he and many others have lived, and died, through. Sgt. James Lenihan served in the Second World War in the 104th infantry division, where he toured Europe fighting. He was wounded in action and received a purple heart, though he never spoke about his experiences in the war with his family. After his passing in 2007, his family found a poem that he wrote where he describes his experience in killing a man in action. The poem is titled Murder: Most Foul, which is borrowed from Shakespeare’s Hamlet. It has six 4-lined stanzas and a final 5-lined stanza, with each having different rhyming patterns. The first two stanzas have the pattern ABCDEBCD, stanzas three through six have the pattern ABCB, and the 5-line stanza has the pattern ABCDB. The poem utilizes multiple techniques including repetition, rhyme, imagery and metaphor. Lenihan uses the terms ‘surprise’ and ‘strangest’ to convey the rarity and unusualness of what was happening. He began to cry for he killed fellow man in cold blood. This was unusual as he was going to war to fight, but when he shot a man he regained his conscience, only too late. ‘So young’ holds more power than referring to the soldier as just young, and this is repeated again with the addition of
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