It is said to be a dignified and a noble thing for a soldier to fight or kill for his country. However, In “Dulce et Descorum est”, Owen banishes this misapprehension and lays out the truth from the very first line of his poem. He writes, “ Bent double, like old beggars under sacks, knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge…men marched asleep…drunken with fatigue”(471) By using a simile, Owen shows that there wasn’t anything noble about fighting in a war. Rather, he compares his experience and those of his comrade to the lowest class of people in England: Beggars. Whom, even though drunken with fatigue or other words very exhausted had no other choice that to walk through thick, soft, wet mud or what he calls sludge. Similarly in “The Man He Killed” Hardy begins his poem stating “Had he and I had met, By some old inn we should’ve set us done to wet, Right many a nipperkin! But ranged as infantry, And staring face to face, I shot at him and him at me and killed him in his place” (lines 1-7). This quote shows that given under different circumstances it might be possible that Owens and his counterpart could’ve been friends. They could have had a drink at a bar. However, due to the fact that they were at war he had no choice other than to shoot another man like himself. This in actually doesn’t show nobility or dignity. This shows the reader that war is not dignifying rather, it damages one’s personality and perception of others.
Another similarity between the two poems is the author’s use of figurative language. Both Owen and Hardy uses Sarcasm and Irony to express that war is not as pleasant as it is made out to seem. Owen writes “If you could hear the, at jolt, the blood…froth-corrupted lungs… My friend you would not tell with such high zest, to the children ardent for desperate glory, the old lie: Dulce et decorum est Pro patria mori,” (471). In a very sarcastic way this quote resonates with the reader. It demonstrates how young men and women are often brainwashed into thinking and believing the lies associated with war. It demonstrates that if citizens are to experience the obscene violence and injuries soldiers experience first-hand, they will understand the true nature of war.
The major difference between these two poems is tone. Owen uses a very serious, direct and descriptive style of writing. By using words and