Wilfred Owen Essay

1001 Words5 Pages
Wilfred Owen’s poetry effectively conveys his perspectives on human conflict through his experiences during The Great War. Poems such as ‘Futility’ and ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ portray these perceptions through the use of poetic techniques, emphasising such conflicts involving himself, other people and nature. These themes are examined in extreme detail, attempting to shape meaning in relation to Owen’s first-hand encounters whilst fighting on the battlefield.

Wilfred Owen experiences many inner conflicts during his time in the war. The harsh notions of war constantly challenge his personal morals and beliefs. ‘Futility’ explores Owen’s emotions involving the pointlessness of human sacrifice. In the poem, Owen and his comrades lay a dying
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Owen’s inner beliefs and perspectives tell himself to believe that the sun will rejuvenate the young soldier, despite the futility of the miracle occurring. This is a great example of Owen’s perspectives on human conflict. Owen continues the second stanza with thoughts questioning the sun’s creation of life in the first place: ‘Think how it wakes the seeds, - Woke once the clays of a cold star’. The repetition of ‘W’ symbolises the confusion of Owen and leaves him questioning why the sun has the potential to create life, but is unable to resurrect the fallen. Throughout the poem of ‘Futility’, Owen contrasts his opinions on the sun. He moves from acknowledging his affection to the ‘kind old sun’ in the first stanza, to finding the sun’s beams ‘fatuous’ and meaningless in the second. These techniques Owen uses convey his perspectives on human conflict extremely well.

‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ is another of Wilfred Owen’s poems that conveys inner human conflict, in terms of past doings in World War I. The poem was written in 1917 at Craiglockhart (Owen’s first battle after his rehabilitation due to ‘shellshock’). It portrays an inner change in his approach to war and it’s gruesome environment:

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks, Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,

This opening stanza to ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ is a direct reference to
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