Written in 1918 March, Owen’s poem Insensibility explores exactly that, and how it exists in various form at War. He opens with the suggestion that the only ones who die happily are the ones who become unaffected by the harsh realities of War. They no longer are phased by the bones that they walk all over of their fellow comrades, they fail to show empathy for those around them and they cannot even bring themselves to make jokes to try and lift the spirits of themselves and their friends. This is all a result of being exposed to the front line for so long. At first, we are baffled at this statement made by Owen, simply because in other poems, he tries to portray a sense of compassion towards those that die at War. The attitude that is conveyed in Apologia Pro Poemate and Dulce Et Decorum Est in particular is one of disappointment at the public for not showing enough sympathy. In Apologia, Owen even redefines beauty as the bonds that are formed in confined environments like those at War. Therefore, in terms of this form of insensitiveness Owen opposes his usual messages in Insensibility.
In the middle of the first stanza, Owen makes a bold statement, a lone sentence; “The front line withers.”, implying that it resembles flowers shrivelling and dying. He then brings us back to reality and reminds us that the truth is not flowers that are dying, but real men. He goes against the poetic cliché of the men being compared to flowers, and strongly focuses on actuality. This could be where Owen first addresses the topic of imagination in his poem. His unwillingness to promote men as metaphoric resemblances to flowers could be an example of how he thought imagination to be pathetic. However, the idea of one being better off without it is not really evident in this stanza because by highlighting the reality of men dying, he is causing no joy but more upset if anything.
The third stanza opens with “Happy are those who lose imagination”; the same type of opening...
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