Do Not Weep Maiden for the War Is Kind

Topics: World War II, War, The Red Badge of Courage Pages: 2 (488 words) Published: September 29, 2011
Do Not Weep Maiden, for the War Is Kind
This is a very critical and harsh poem. Stephen Crane seems to have a more pessimistic outlook on life than other poems he has written, and nowhere else does that pessimistic outlook come through in his poetry than here. The pattern of the poem affixes a cynical, satirical statement after every statement of "War is kind." For example, "War is kind, Hoarse booming drums of the regiment, little souls who thirst for fight, these men were born to drill and die. The unexplained glory flies above them." Especially when Crane says "the unexplained glory flies above them," he is making a powerful statement by questioning whether all the death and destruction is really worth it. This questioning is very important, because many wars are not really for what they seem to be for. There are exceptions of course, perhaps World War II and the fight to end the holocaust, perhaps the Civil War and the fight to end slavery, but for the most part, wars are usually conflicts between cultures over natural resources and disagreements over cultural values. The glory of war, the patriotism, the nationalism; Crane is trying to state that all of these emotions we associate with most wars are really made up so that generally people will feel better about their actions in the long term. Crane questions whether or not war is ever really worth anything to anybody in this poem. Crane clearly does not think so, considering the level of sarcasm he uses throughout the poem, especially at the end when he powerfully states "Mother whose heart hung humble as a button On the bright splendid shroud of your son, Do not weep. War is kind. " This is very powerful, and Crane very clearly points out that the "glory of war" and "honor of battle" are not worth much to a parent whose son has died, or wife whose husband has died, or child whose father has died. Crane's questioning of warfare is very relevant in today's war when we are as a country in what many people...
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