Dulce et decorum est and the soldier Essay

3092 Words May 3rd, 2014 13 Pages
Comparison between Wilfred Owen’s ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ and Rupert Brooke’s ‘The Soldier’

‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ by Wilfred Owen and ‘The Soldier’ by Rupert Brooke are poems about war which treat their subjects differently. Both poems are examples of the authors’ perceptions of war; Owen’s being about its bitter reality and Brooke’s about the glory of dying for one’s country. The poets express their sentiments on the subject matter in terms of language, tone, rhyme, rhythm and structure. ‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ has very effective language by using diverse methods such as alliteration, onomatopoeia and diction. The tone is unyielding and vivid imagery is used to reinforce it, primarily by means of compelling metaphors and enduring
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The term “...under sacks” also gives the reader an inkling of the fact that they are filled with trepidation of what lies ahead. Though discomforted by the suffering war inevitably involves, and their bodies withered by the harsh brutality of battle, thinking war was behind them, they still kept guard… “Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs… Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots But limped on”. Yet again the reader is drawn in the graphic war scene, made more vivid by his own involvement… “we cursed through the sludge”. Fatigue is emphatically reinforced by language such as “trudge” and “lame”, likewise “Drunk with fatigue” is a vivid image, illuminating the scene as they struggle through and endeavour to put war behind them. Onomatopoeic words such as “sludge and “trudge” help to capture the anguish which is experienced by the soldiers, furthermore these help to reinforce the rhyme scheme, which is as regular as a drum beat. The alliteration in “Knock-kneed” reinforces this drum beat rhythm emphasising the battle weariness of the soldiers, and intensifying the memory of war. Aside from this alliteration, the way Owen creates rhythm most effectively is through the pauses which litter the stanza. We can see this in “All went lame; All went blind; Drunk with fatigue; death even to the hoots Of tired…” This pause effect has a

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