Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs,
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots,
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of gas-shells dropping softly behind.
Gas! GAS! Quick, boys!—An ecstasy of fumbling
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time,
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime.—
Dim through the misty panes and thick green light,
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.
In all my dreams before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.
If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,—
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.
Images:

The Images that are presented in the text are,

1.

“And flound’ring like a man in fire or lime. – Dim through the misty panes and thick green light, as under a green sea i saw him drowning”

This tells me and allows me see and to visualise the green chlorine gas suffocating the soldiers as the fought for their country in WWi, the use of the words ‘thick green light’ and ‘green sea’ let me imagine huge volumes of the thick chlorine gas covering the area the soldiers were fighting in. These images let me feel the severe sadness and sense of lost confidence seeing your fellow friends and comrades passing right in front of you and also the pain the families of the soldiers would be experiencing. The soldiers are dying from the chlorine gas incinerating their lungs.

2.

“If in some smothering dreams, you too could pace behind the wagon we flung him in”

This tells me and allows me see and visualise the idea of a dead man being flung into the back of a wagon after the chlorine gas has killed him in WWI. it portrays the idea of death to me. The words ‘flung’ allow me to see that there was no life left in the soldier just his body which held his scars and history thats why he was flung because he had passed. These images allow me to feel what it would be like to lose someone and to have seen them dead before your eyes. A soldier has been killed and has been ‘flung’ into the back of a wagon so he can be taken back to is family.

3.

“Blood”

Blood brings me the idea of pain and death in this poem. It brings me that idea because blood is a critical component to ourselves and without it we can’t live. The word blood brings the idea of death to me but also life, it makes me think that British soldiers were probably dying fighting for their country and that that they were all in a-lot of pain both mentally and physically. With blood being shared we know soldiers have died but have fought for their country.

 

Language Techniques:

“His hanging face, like a devil’s sick of sin;” this is a simile because ‘like’ has been used to describe the dying soldier.

“He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.” is listing because commas have been used in-between words describing how the soldier was dying,

“Drunk with fatigue;” is a metaphor used to describe how the soldier was so fatigued that he could have appeared that he could have been drunk.

“Obscene as cancer” is emotive language as it will remind people of death and bring the idea of death to them which is saddening and depressing therefore it brings emotion to them.

Join the conversation! 1 Comment

  1. A great start Finn: a number of language techniques discussed and you have begun to explain how the selection of these techniques affects the reader. Continue to develop your analysis. I.e. “These images allow me to feel what it would be like to lose someone and to have seen them dead before your eyes.” Explain what you see; how you feel? Consider why the poet wanted you to see these images? What was his purpose?

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