Wilfred Owen successfully creates the truthful and terrifying image of war within his poems. The loss, sacrifice, urgency and pity of war are shown within the themes of his poetry and the use of strong figurative language; sensory imagery and tone contribute to the reader. This enables the reader to appreciate Owen’s comments about the hopelessness of war and the sacrifice the men around him went through within his poems, ‘Dulce et Decorum Est.’ and ‘Futility’.
‘Dulce et Decorum Est’ reveals the recount before, during and after the WWI gas attack. Not only does Owen address the horrific images in detail through visual imagery, but the title acts as an ironic lie meaning: ‘it is sweet and honourable to die for one’s country’. Throughout
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The use of repetition and exclamation marks within ‘Gas! Gas! Quick, boys!’ reveals to the reader of the urgency in the poem and also draws the focal point on the young men conducting dangerous missions within the war. The tone of the quote is read with panicked pace because of the exclamation marks, ordering the reader to emphasize Owen’s words. ‘He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning’ emphasises the gas spreading inside a soldier referring to the reader of visual and auditory imagery of despair and tragedy as the man urgently lunges himself towards Owen. He enables the reader to imagine seeing and hearing the soldier struggle to survive whilst choking on air. After the poem concludes, it is obvious that Owen had given the poem an ironic ending, giving the reader the chance to appreciate what he was trying to emphasize about the horror and pity of war.
Another of Owen’s confronting poems about the destruction of war is ‘Futility’, written about the tragic death of his fellow soldier being frozen in February, 1917 in France. Within this poem he draws the reader’s attention as he questions the death of his soldier and makes the reader known to the sacrifice and loss he has experienced. Owen forces the reader to appreciate the pointlessness of war, but also life itself.
Owen begins the poems with a directive speech in order to engage the reader within the first stanza of his poem. ‘Move him into the sun’ uses visual