Compare How Robert Frost and Wilfred Owen Communicate the Theme of Loss in ‘Out, Out-’ and “Disabled”. Essay

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Compare how Robert Frost and Wilfred Owen communicate the theme of loss in ‘Out, Out-’ and “Disabled”.

In the two poems “Out, Out-” and “Disabled”, a similar theme of loss is portrayed. Both of these poems deal with the subject of physical loss, as both protagonists of these poems experience accidental amputation. Both Robert Frost and Wilfred Owen manage to captivate their audience’s attention, and also a certain degree of sympathy for the protagonists’ misfortune. They do this successfully, with the use of common literary techniques and linguistic skills, such as simile, metaphor, personification, contrast, and many more literary devices, which range from obvious to very subtle.

“Out, Out-”, written by American poet Robert
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This poem, similar to “Out, Out-” is very dark, but unlike “Out, Out-”, there are no deaths involved. This poem contains some anti-Christian elements, and also, possible unintentional negative portrayal of women in general, particularly near the end of the poem. This poem manages to successfully captivate the reader’s sympathy and pity for the protagonist.

Unlike “Out, Out-“, a sense of negativity was portrayed from the very beginning, as Owen uses undertones like “shivered in his ghastly suit of grey.” Not only this, loss is also portrayed almost immediately in the first stanza. The sense of loss is everywhere: “Legless, sewn short at the elbow”, “Voices of boys rang saddening like a hymn”, and “Till gathering sleep had mothered them from him” all portray a serious sense of loss. This young soldier, because of his loss of limbs, tries to avoid all he happiness, because he knows he would not be happy again. Also, “saddening like a hymn” is a use of contrast and irony, as “hymns” are usually happy songs to praise the Lord, and now, it is used negatively. This may be a subtle anti-Christ proclamation, but nevertheless, it is a use of contrast and irony. In general, the first stanza makes the reader feel sympathetic to this protagonist, and this possibly adds to the sense of loss in the poem.

Also, Owen uses irony very effectively. “…he liked a blood smear down his leg,