Hell Where Youth and Laughter Go
During WWI, many citizens were oblivious of the war and its imminent consequences. War poems and literature were the only effective methods to remove the distance and reveal the some of the truth. Siegfried Sassoon wrote “suicide in the trenches” as an anti war poem in the 20th century. Sassoon creates a dark atmosphere for the loss of innocence taken place during WWI in “Suicide in the Trenches” using a three-part structure to intensify the stages of trench lifestyle along with high impact images that bring moments to life similar to the fictional struggles experienced by Paul Baumer.
Suicide in the Trenches is broken down into three definite segments to portray the soldier’s early pure soul and misconception of war, the loss of innocence and suicide of the soldier followed by the delusion of war through the public’s eyes to help deepen our understanding of a soldier’s hardship. The first stanza shows the innocence of a young boy with little experience in the world. The soldier was described as “a simple soldier boy” (1), displaying him to be small and filled with hope for the future expecting the best of war. The soldier had no aspirations due to the fact that he was extremely young is represented on line two “ginned at life in empty joy” (2). Many young soldiers joined the army hoping to help them start a clear future and were genuinely content with serving their country. The gap separating the first two stanzas is to show the rapid loss of innocence in a soldier as he progresses as a soldier. The second stanza explains the emotional hardening experienced in war. It starts out with “In winter trenches, cowed and glum,” (5), showing the dark side of the battlefield in comparison with the first stanza. Happiness is now a struggle to maintain even thought he entered the war with great optimism. Then, the soldier develops “crumps and lice”(6), which were common unpleasant trench diseases...
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