For Friday: World War One British Poets
NOTE: No class on Wednesday--I have to be out of town, unfortunately. So we'll pick up on Friday. Don't forget to start memorizing your poems! (see post below with the recitation schedule)
- Sassoon: “Haunted” (34), “The Troops” (36), “Repression of War Experience” (37), “Picture Show” (38)
Graves: “To Lucasta” (39), “Goliath and David” (40), “The Last Post” (41), “When I’m Killed” (41)
Answer TWO of the following:
Q1: What does Sassoon mean by the metaphor, “life is just the picture dancing on a screen”? Is he talking about life in general, or life in the war? Do you think some of our previous poets, such as Owen or Gurney, would agree with him?
Q2: Graves’ poem, “To Lucasta On Going To the War—For the Fourth Time” is a slight parody of a 17th century poem by Richard Lovelace called “To Lucasta, Going To the Wars,” which is also about a soldier leaving his love to fight. The concluding lines of the poem read, “Yet this inconstancy is such/As thou too shalt adore:/I could not love thee, dear, so much,/Loved I not honor more.” How is
Graves parodying or mocking this
sentiment in his poem? How has war changed over the centuries, based on Graves’
Graves’ “When I’m Killed”
to Brooke’s “V.The Soldier” from The Soldier (p. 3). How does this underline
Graves’ essential philosophy of the war and of being a
soldier? Do you think he’s mocking Brooke’s beliefs? Or are they merely
slightly different ways of looking at the same experience or sacrifice?
Q4: How does Sassoon conjure up what Owen called “memory [fingering] in their hair of murders” (22) in his poem, “Repression of War Experience?” According to this poem, why in some ways is it easier to fight and die in a war than to survive it?