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Uploaded by snow_shoes31 on Feb 23, 2002

A person who experiences war will be changed forever, their outlook on life is forever a special one. These people are the witnesses to a mass slaughter, they couldn’t be anything but disturbed by this. When soldiers are in battle they need to be aware of one thing, their mental health, without it all hope for them must be given up.

In Owen’s poem there is a personification, creating a metaphor, made between the never ceasing weather and the emotions of the soldiers. “Watching, we hear the mad gusts of tugging on the wire.” The mad gusts are, literally, the wind blowing against these soldiers who are mentally and physically worn down. As the wind applies to emotions, though, the mad gusts are actually the soldiers' grief that is felt by all of them. The wire represents the emotional line that, if crossed, will physically destroy the soldier by means of emotions. Even something as strong and taught as wire is being forced in an opposing direction do to the war, such is their emotion of nationalism.

There is also a strong sense of imagery imposed on the reader. “Shutters and doors, all closed; on us the doors are closed:” This is the turning point not only in the poem but in the war as well. The soldiers have reached such mental fatigue that they have simply given up, they don’t even care about their aching brains at this point, it is now just a matter of getting as far away from there as possible. With the doors and shutters being closed, though, you can see soldiers walking out of a smoke filled abyss of a battlefield with each soldier lost and confused as to what they’ve been through.

The soldiers of war bear and enormous load, not just of gear, but of emotional grief as well. “…They carried hot chow in green mermite cans...” O’Brian over elaborates this point to show the reader that this is a very special occasion. This is done so that it is clear to the reader that the soldiers are so lost within themslves. The thought of a hot meal triggers a warm feeling of home for them, this is why they rush to take it in, they are yearning for something that they’re used to. This is why the author has taken the time to describe the color and type of can, he wants...

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Uploaded by:   snow_shoes31

Date:   02/23/2002

Category:   Poetry

Length:   3 pages (581 words)

Views:   1845

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