Monday, August 19, 2019

Language in Wilfred Owens The Sentry :: essays research papers

Wilfred Owen’s ‘The Sentry’ To me Wilfred Owen’s poetry is visually descriptive, so much so that he seems to be able to effortlessly transport you into whatever situation he is describing. This particular poem leaves you in no doubt as to the horrors of war and the terrible atrocities these poor men endured. In the opening line he says ‘and he knew’ using the technique of personalisation he has turned the massive opposing force into a single person, someone who was actively trying to single them out, to attack them personally. This shows you just how desperate they felt and how to them no matter where they seemed to find shelter ‘he’ was never far behind. He goes on to say ‘and gave us hell for shell on frantic shell hammered on top, but never quite got through’. By using the word ‘hell’ he is actively describing the terrible endlessness of their situation or the perseverance of the enemy and the fact that they cannot escape. enduring the onslaught, hour on hour, day by day. ‘Frantic shell’ the word frantic to me describes the non-target based shelling, as the enemy knew they that their enemy was somewhere in front of them, so just seemed to shell anywhere within that vicinity in the sure hope that they would be causing death eventually. The use of the rhyming words ‘hell’ and ‘shell’ automatically connects the two words in the reader’s brain, forming a connection and reinforcing the idea of the battle being ‘hell’. ‘Hammered’is also a very thought provoking verb used in this line, this word used in this particular sentence is brilliant, it not only describes the noise, as you cannot hammer quietly, but describes the repetition, when hammering something you repeatedly strike it. Hammered is a violent verb and its two syllables makes the word sound short and harsh. In the following line, ‘rain, guttering down’ this makes me think the guttering I have on my house, a purpose made moulded channel used to transport water. He deliberately used this word to convey just how much rain had fallen that it had naturally moulded gutters out of the mud, channelling the slime and slurry into waterfalls. There is also assonance in this sentence emphasising the guttering (which I have already analysed above). Wilfred Owen is cleverly able to relate to you a description of a bomb without ever actually calling it a bomb.

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