People always express their views about contemporary issues in the society in different ways. For example, some people express their views by writing articles, giving speeches, and debating on various issues. Poems can also be used as a means of conveying ones feelings and attitudes about a given event or issue in a more passionate manner.
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This is because the use of figures of speech in poetry makes the message being conveyed more clear and interesting to the audience. This paper will discuss the different attitudes adopted by four poets towards war.
“The Charge of the Light Brigade” is a poem that talks about the Crimean war. This war took place from 1853 to 1856. During this war, Britain and its allies fought against the Russians.
And much of the conflict took place in the Crimean Peninsula. The Battle of Balaclava was one of the popular events that took place during the war. The Russians were so amazed by the great courage demonstrated by the British Light Brigade, to an extent that they did not feel humiliated by the defeat. They instead blamed it on an error that was made by an army official.
The poet presents a glorifying perspective of the war by using an interesting beat, and narration about a noble heroism. The poet has also used a lot of imagery and metaphors in explaining the tragic events that Brigade experienced.
Further more, the tone of the poem has been developed using figures of speech. However, this poem has some contradictions. This is because it conveys a sense of glory and honor, and at the same time it talks about war and defeat (Probst 75).
“Concord Hymn” is a poem that was recited in Concord in 1837 to commemorate the role that was played by the people who lived in Concord in the “Battle of Concord Lexington”. This war took place during the American Revolution. This poem refers to the continuous struggle that North American colonies underwent in order to be emancipated from the British domination.
The poet has recognized the great determination of the Americans when they fought against the British. The poet has presented a mixture of somber and joyous mood in the poem. This makes the poem relevant to the ceremony which was meant to commemorate the war.
In the poem, the raising of flag symbolizes the great honoring of the people who died during the war and it also encourages the people who survived to continue fighting for more freedom. Although the language used in the poem is quite complicated, it is however a good way of expressing the important ideals of nationalism (Emmerson 4).
The poem “The Man He Killed” talks about meaningless nature of war, in which a soldier killed another simply on the basis that they were fighting on different fronts. The first verse suggests that the two soldiers hated each because of war and had they met elsewhere they could have been good friends.
The use of repetition in the poem is meant to justify the action of the soldier who killed his colleague because they were enemies. The narrator in this poem is trying to say that the action he took was unavoidable. The theme of the poem reveals the strange nature of war in which people are compelled to kill each other for no good reasons.
The use of conversation tone in the poem gives the impression that the soldier is trying to make us understand and accept his action. The language that was used in this poem is simple and easy to understand (Hardy 67). From the poem we learn that war affects the good relationship that people have.
The poem “Dulce ET Decorum Est” was written by Wilfred Owen who served as a captain in the British military. His aim for writing this poem was to show his disapproval of the notions about nationalism that were often spread by journalists.
He has the feeling that war is so terrible and against humanity. He also expressed his negative feelings a bout the impacts of war in the society and also on the soldiers (Kerr 18).
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The above analyses of the four poems indicate the different attitudes of the poets towards war. However, Wilfred Owen in his poem “Dulce ET Decorum Est” has the most powerful sentiments a bout war. This is because he has used many strong poetic devices to show the brutal and horrifying nature of war experiences.
For example alliteration has been to make the poem easy to recite and memorize. Unlike the other poets, he has used his personal experience in war to show the effects of war on people and the soldiers. For example, he says that some soldiers are always brutally killed and they do not even get decent burials (Kerr 89).
Apart from this, their relatives suffer after losing their loved ones. Last but more importantly, Owen has tried to give a true account of the nature of war in contrast to the other poets who give justifications for war by talking about its glorification and honor.
Emmerson, Ralph. The concord hymn and other poems. New York: Dover Publishers, 1996. Print.
Hardy, Thomas. Penguin classics. New York: Penguin Books, 1998. Print.
Kerr, Wilfred. The works of Wilfred Owen. Hertfordshire: Words Worth, 1999. Print.
Probst, Robert. Response and analysis: teaching literature in secondary school. New York: Heinemann, 2004. Print.