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Dulce Et Decorum and the Road to Nijmegen

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The poems Dulce Et Decorum Est by Wilfred Owen and The Road To Nijmegen by Earle Birney offer two similar yet different views on war. Owen views war as unglorious and tells his view of things as an angry and resentful soldier. Birney on the other hand uses the view of a lonely love sick soldier to make his point of war clear in a softer way. Both authors use the situation, images, and diction to dictate their attitudes towards war.

The situations of both poems are soldiers at war in terrible conditions. Both soldiers are tired, depressed and would rather be anywhere but fighting in the unglorious war. In Dulce the soldier is taking part in an active war. He uses detailed images to allow the reader to see the horrible state of World War I. In The Road, though the soldier is experiencing the aftermath of a horrific battle, World War II. This solider uses a softer way of detailing what he is experiencing as to emphasize a softer image to his loved one.

The situation of these poems creates images similar along with considerably different as well. In both Dulce and The Road the images are of death and a sense of hopelessness for the soldiers. The images Owen and Birney create show the devastating effect on people in the war and people witnessing it. Owen uses images of death and unbearable conditions to illustrate the soldier's hopeless outlook on life. Dulce shows the effect on a particular soldier and how images of war are with him even years later. Owens images of war are very descriptive to get his anti-war attitude across clearly to the reader. The reader can imagine the gruesome images as Owen describes and put themselves in his position. Birney takes a different approach to get his attitude towards war across to the reader. He uses softer images or compares them to his loved one to create a softer image of the otherwise harsh reality of war. The images used in The Road show a sense of hope the soldier has by thinking of his loved one. The effect in this poem is on both the soldier along with the citizens of the battle zone. The images create a sad sense that makes you feel the citizen's pain. The images also change a horrible scene into an angelic one to show hope the soldier carried around in hopes of someday returning to his love.

The images are descriptive and clear due to the use of diction. Both Owen and Birney use extensive imagery and metaphors. They both use intense descriptive to create a dark, disturbing,



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