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Apologia Pro Poemate Meo Analysis

Author: Poetry of Wilfred Owen Type: Poetry Views: 1330

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I, too, saw God through mud--

The mud that cracked on cheeks when wretches smiled.

War brought more glory to their eyes than blood,

And gave their laughs more glee than shakes a child.

Merry it was to laugh there--

Where death becomes absurd and life absurder.

For power was on us as we slashed bones bare

Not to feel sickness or remorse of murder.

I, too, have dropped off fear--

Behind the barrage, dead as my platoon,

And sailed my spirit surging, light and clear,

Past the entanglement where hopes lie strewn;

And witnessed exhultation--

Faces that used to curse me, scowl for scowl,

Shine and lift up with passion of oblation,

Seraphic for an hour, though they were foul.

I have made fellowships--

Untold of happy lovers in old song.

For love is not the binding of fair lips

With the soft silk of eyes that look and long.

By joy, whose ribbon slips,--

But wound with war's hard wire whose stakes are strong;

Bound with the bandage of the arm that drips;

Knit in the welding of the rifle-thong.

I have perceived much beauty

In the hoarse oaths that kept our courage straight;

Heard music in the silentness of duty;

Found peace where shell-storms spouted reddest spate.

Nevertheless, except you share

With them in hell the sorrowful dark of hell,

Whose world is but a trembling of a flare

And heaven but a highway for a shell,

You shall not hear their mirth:

You shall not come to think them well content

By any jest of mine. These men are worth

Your tears: You are not worth their merriment.


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||| Analysis | Critique | Overview Below |||

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This poem is very sarcastic and facetious, written in response to a comment that Owen's poetry was too depressing.
Just because Owen uses words with optimistic connotations, such as "glory", "fellowships", or "merry", does not mean that Owen is saying that war is glorious or merry. Furthermore, would this not contradict Owen's intentions and motivations for writing poetry which condemns the horrors of war? This poem is structured in a way which rebukes everything that may be considered good about war. "Merry is was to laugh there- where death becomes absurd and life becomes absurder." This line shows how the soldiers are so desensitised to the idea and experience of death all around them, that the idea of life seems less realistic and normal.
Owen finishes with an attack on those who glorify war, "They are worth your tears. You are not worth their merriment" Owen condemns those have NOT experienced the horrors of war, yet justify and glorify it from the home front.

| Posted on 2014-10-16 | by a guest

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| Posted on 2011-09-26 | by a guest

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On the contrary, Owen\'s use of language is evidence of his glorification of war. \'Merry\' holds connotations of Christmas and therefore in likening the war to Christmas, Owen implies the war is a jolly occasion. Furthermore, Owen also implies that the war brings out the best in humanity as he writes \'I have made many fellowships\'; these \'fellowships\' would not have been created were it not for the war. Also the use of the plural as opposed to the singular implies these \'fellowships\' are widespread and not isolated instances of beauty in war.

| Posted on 2011-05-20 | by a guest

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this poem does not glorify War, this poem is to explain the reasons for his negative description of war in other poems. This poem tells us that war strips men of their morals and are \"not to feel sickness or remorse of murder.\" War makes men feel no regret in killing and almost dehumanises them. The poem\'s last stanza is the most striking as it criticizes the home front and their ignorance of true warfare. Wilfred Owen mocks the people at home as they can never understand what it is like to be \"in hell.\" However, ironically his poetry is what allows the home front to really understand the war.
one of the most fantastic poems out there. Truly inspirational.

| Posted on 2011-05-01 | by a guest

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Apologia is an optimistic, light hearted poem written by Owen in response to requests to make his poetry more jolly and cheerful. This is epitomized by some of Owen\'s use of language such as \'merry\' and \'glory\'. Both words hold connotations of happiness and a certain glorification of war that we seldom witness in Owens other poems

| Posted on 2011-04-20 | by a guest

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the title means explanation for my pems, and the tone is very sardoic, and expresses Owen\'s abhorracne of women, the poem has a lyrical gentle metre which is used in an ironic sense seeing as the subject matter is not optimistic

| Posted on 2011-02-18 | by a guest

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Hello, i don\'t know what dis poem\'s about but i\'ll get back to you soon
just wanted to be the first one up here

| Posted on 2010-10-25 | by a guest

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