Dulce Et Decorum Est

Good Essays
How many people are willing to risk their lives and be miserable to honor their names? The poem, “Dulce et Decorum Est”, written by Wilfred Owen focuses on that. The poem describes the horror and cruel side of war as the narrator vividly tells us how war tears apart a person both physically and mentally. The use of imagery, similes, and connotation help shape the poem for people to understand that war isn't glorious at all.

The vivid and detailed imagery throughout “Dulce et Decorum Est” gives readers a better understanding of how heinous war is because we feel as if we are there with the soldiers ourselves. At the beginning of the poem, Owen, gives us a clear image of the soldiers: “Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots / but limped
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The narrator compares war to something else that’s depressing, showing that war can only be compared to something else as bad. The first lines of the poem introduce the mood with these lines: “Bent double, like old beggars under sacks, / knock-kneed, coughing like hags” (lines 1-2). The narrator compares two fallacious things to each other. Old beggars lead depressing lives of poverty and desperation and the battlefield made the soldiers feel the same way. They were desperate and exhausted from fighting and getting injured. Their knees have gone weak and fragile from standing on their feet and crouching for too long. The comparison of these two things has a deep meaning because old beggars are sad and miserable and the soldiers probably feel the same way too. The narrator describes an unknown soldier who suffered in the battlefield, he said, “His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin” (line 20). This is also somewhat of a hyperbole. The narrator exaggerates the man’s pain by comparing him to a devil who is sick of death and suffering which is kind of ironic considering that the devil enjoys those things. This comparison relates to the readers because the readers can understand how death is too much of a terrible price to pay for honor. The devil is tired of death and so are the soldiers. The …show more content…
The words have a bitter tone behind them and it shows the dislike the narrator feels towards war. His dislike for war makes the readers also dislike because the bitterness shows that war is ugly. An example of the bitterness the narrator feels is towards the end of the poem when he says, “My friend, you would not tell me with such high zest / To children ardent for some desperate glory / the old Lie: Dulce et decorum est / pro patha mori” (lines 27-30). The word “friend” is ironic in a way. The narrator obviously doesn't see this man as a friend, he sees him as the opposite of that. His words hold a bitter and distasteful tone to them. He doesn't want the propaganda of war being glorified. The narrator is upset and disgusted that children are being told that honor comes with war. The word “lie” also sounds angry, he knows that glory from war is a lie because he experienced it himself. The bitterness adds more to the theme that war shouldn't be glorified whatsoever especially to desperate, innocent children who don't know any better. People leave for the battlefield in desperate need for their names to be glorified. But it's not like that at all. War is brutal and miserable and shouldn't be glorified, it shouldn't be a method for people

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