Breakfast and Exposure

This essay talks about the poem’s purpose and the poet’s techniques and to show how Wilfred Owen and W.W.Gibson see the glamorized image surrounding the war. Both of these poems have many things in common they both are a war poem, they can be seen as biased and one sided as the story is only told by one person.

This poem is about soldiers taking their breakfast during war in the trenches. The poem describes that even soldiers take normal breakfast as we do every morning. They are trying to enjoy themselves to prevent them from being nervous and coward. They talk about which team in a local football club is going to win. They even take their bets by using food.

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“Breakfast” is composed of one verse of nine lines. The line length is about 6-10 words.

This poem’s purpose is describing an experience that the soldiers had in the trenches during a war. The poem describes how the soldiers have to live in the trenches. They are not supposed to raise their head. This is because they can be shot, so they have to lie on their backs every time when they are in the trenches.

This poem also doesn’t describe a lot about the surroundings. The first two lines and the last two lines of this are repeated because it shows what was happening at the beginning and it becomes continuous at the end of the poem.

As you can see in this poem W.W.Gibson writes in a different sorts of language, he uses older language for example; rasher, cursed etc. Owen uses more bitter language in ‘exposure’; he doesn’t use today language, but ‘posh’ language, not so harsh words (example: choking, drowning, blood-shod etc.)

This poem is about a group of soldiers having headaches that are caused by worries that they have about what is going to happen to them. They stay awake the all-silent night whispering and being curious and nervous.

In this poem Wilfred Owen writes in different sorts of language, he uses older language for example words such as snow-dazed, dowse, sun-dozed, littered, loath, bramble etc.

“Exposure” is composed of eight verses of five lines of uneven lengths. The line length is about 3-13 words.

This poem is written in the first person; however, this person is speaking on behalf of all of the soldiers, so it is plural first person. The soldiers are almost in desperation for something to happen, to take away the fear that arises when it is silent and they do not know what will happen to them next.

They also want some action to prevent them from dying a slow, cruel death caused by the bitter conditions. This is shown on the end of four of the eight verses (line 40) with a simple line of three words, “But nothing happens.” This not only shows that war is depressing, but that they have no control over what will happen and have no idea as to what that would be. This poem describes a lot of surroundings like; the weather, time of the day, sounds made by things around etc.