Wilfred Owen Poems

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Wilfred Owen
Wilfred Edward Salter Owen MC (March 18, 1893 – November 4, 1918) was a British poet and soldier, regarded by many as the leading poet of the First World War. His shocking, realistic war poetry on the horrors of trench and gas warfare was heavily influenced by his friend Siegfried Sassoon and sat in stark contrast to both the public perception of war at the time, and to the confidently patriotic verse written earlier by war poets such as Rupert Brooke. Some of his best-known works—most of which were published posthumously—include Dulce Et Decorum Est, Anthem for Doomed Youth, Futility, and Strange Meeting. His preface intended for a book of poems to be published in 1919 contains numerous well-known phrases, especially 'War, and the pity of War', and 'the Poetry is in the pity'. He is perhaps just as well-known for having been killed in action at the Sambre-Oise Canal just a week before the war ended, causing news of his death to reach home as the town's church bells declared peace.

anthem for doomed youth
 
 
What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?
Only the monstrous anger of the guns.
... [read poem]
observation
 
 
If I don't drive around the park,
I'm pretty sure to make my mark.
If I'm in bed each nigh... [read poem]
one perfect rose
 
 
A single flow'r he sent me, since we met.
All tenderly his messenger he chose;
Deep-he... [read poem]
love song
 
 
My own dear love, he is strong and bold
And he cares not what comes after.
His words r... [read poem]
the last laugh
 
 
'O Jesus Christ! I'm hit,' he said; and died.
Whether he vainly cursed, or prayed indeed,... [read poem]
song in a minor key
 
 
There's a place I know where the birds swing low,
And wayward vines go roaming,
Where ... [read poem]
comment
 
 
Oh, life is a glorious cycle of song,
A medley of extemporanea;
And love is a thing that c... [read poem]
a certain lady
 
 
Oh, I can smile for you, and tilt my head,
And drink your rushing words with eager lips,... [read poem]
news item
 
 
Men seldom make passes
At girls who wear glasses.
interview
 
 
The ladies men admire, I've heard,
Would shudder at a wicked word.
Their candle gives a si... [read poem]
finis
 
 
Now it's over, and now it's done;
Why does everything look the same?
Just as bright, t... [read poem]
resumé
 
 
Razors pain you;
Rivers are damp;
Acids stain you;
And drugs cause cramp.
Guns a... [read poem]
epitaph for a darling lady
 
 
All her hours were yellow sands,
Blown in foolish whorls and tassels;
Slipping warmly thro... [read poem]
rondeau redoublé (and scarcely worth the trouble, at that)
 
 
The same to me are sombre days and gay.
Though joyous dawns the rosy morn, and bright,... [read poem]
wail
 
 
Love has gone a-rocketing.
That is not the worst;
I could do without the thing,
... [read poem]
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