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Analyze "The Show" by Wilfred Owen.

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user3521318 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted January 30, 2013 at 2:54 PM via web

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Analyze "The Show" by Wilfred Owen.

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rrteacher | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted January 30, 2013 at 6:57 PM (Answer #1)

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"The Show" represent's Owen's reflections just before entering battle, which British soldiers called, sardonically, by that name. In the poem, Owen takes the point of view of a spirit, surveying a battlefield from a "vague height" with "Death" flying beside him. From this vantage point, Owen sees horrific sights across a landscape he compares to the moon. Like the moon, the battlefield has a face, complete with a razor-wire beard and pocks and craters from bombs. Owen notes that little caterpillar-like creatures, which are actually soldiers, crawl and writhe on this hellish landscape. The poem is full of imagery suggesting broken human bodies, coming to an end with these chilling lines:

Death fell with me, like a deepening moan/And he, picking a manner of worm, which half had hid/Its bruises in the earth, but crawled no further/Showed me its feet, the feet of many men/And the fresh-severed head of it, my head.

With this poem, Owen, perhaps as much as in any of his other works, means to convey the horrors of war by portraying themas they really are: disgusting, foul, brutal, and often seeming only vaguely human. 


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user3521318 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted January 31, 2013 at 8:22 AM (Answer #2)

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