American War Poetry, Part V

Jumping forward to World War I, we have two poems that once again present differing views of war, and with this pairing we have the coincidence that both poets died in the war about which they wrote. Alan Seeger (1888-1916) graduated from Harvard in 1910 but then enlisted in the French Foreign Legion and was killed before the U.S. even entered World War I. Wilfred Owen (1893-1918) was an aspiring poet who was working as a tutor in the French Pyrenees when war broke out. He eventually enlisted back in England and saw combat for the last two years of the war. He was shot and killed on November 4, 1918, and news of his death reached his parents in England on November 11, as armistice bells were ringing. Read the rest of this entry »

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