Several of the imagist poets used war as a theme of their poems and sometimes of their entire collections. One of the most dominant uses of this theme is Aldington’s Images of War, in which the poet relates his personal experiences in the trenches of World War I. This collection also includes poems that he wrote after the war, poems in which he uses a cynical tone to mark his disgust of societies that allow war to occur in the first place. The poem “The Lover,” which appeared in this volume, is one of the most prominent poems in this collection. It brings together an interesting mix of his fears as well as the sexual desires that he experienced during the war.
Pound’s Cathay is also based on the theme of war. Although Pound wrote these poems from translations of Li Po, an eighth-century poet from China, the original poems focused on war, a timely concern of Pound’s, as the effects of World War I were influencing his thoughts.
Male poets were not the only ones who were affected by the war. Many of Doolittle’s poems in her collection Sea Garden engage images of pain, suffering, and desolation. Some critics relate these images to the ravages of war felt by the entire population, including those who were left at home. Doolittle was married to Aldington at the time he served on the front lines and thus felt the full impact not only of her personal fears and sense of loss but also of Aldington’s...
(The entire section is 1055 words.)
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