Wilfred Owen Essay

Topics: Poetry, World War I, Sun Pages: 3 (989 words) Published: July 29, 2013
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 man into the sun in an attempt to revive him. ‘Gently its touch awoke him once, At home, whispering of fields unsown.’ Within this quote, Owen juxtaposes the blooming tranquillity of the English countryside with the unforgiving French battlefield. He questions the nobility of dying for one’s country, as the man that just passed had a superior life before the war. In response to the futile attempt to save his fellow comrade, Owen continues the poem with a different approach. The alliteration in ‘the clays of a cold star’ highlights this change due to the repetition of the letter ‘C’. The cutting tone demonstrates emotions of frustration and anger towards the war and, once again, challenges the idea of dying for one’s country. Through such techniques portrayed in the poem, ‘Futility’, Owen conveys his perspectives on human conflict during the Great War.

‘Futility’ also conveys several human conflicts involving nature. Owen sees the sun as a powerful resource that has the vigour to potentially bring war-torn soles back to life: ‘move him into the sun’. The first stanza reflects Owen’s positive perspectives of the sun superbly. ‘If anything might rouse him now / The kind old sun will know’. He uses personification to show his...
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