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Wilfred Owen

(1893-1918 / Shropshire / England)

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1914


War broke: and now the Winter of the world
With perishing great darkness closes in.
The foul tornado, centred at Berlin,
Is over all the width of Europe whirled,
Rending the sails of progress. Rent or furled
Are all Art's ensigns. Verse wails. Now begin
Famines of thought and feeling. Love's wine's thin.
The grain of human Autumn rots, down-hurled.

For after Spring had bloomed in early Greece,
And Summer blazed her glory out with Rome,
An Autumn softly fell, a harvest home,
A slow grand age, and rich with all increase.
But now, for us, wild Winter, and the need
Of sowings for new Spring, and blood for seed.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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Read poems about / on: autumn, winter, spring, war, summer, home, world

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  • Veteran Poet - 3,470 Points Savita Tyagi (12/16/2014 7:32:00 PM)

    There was a time when war started and ended. In today's world it never seems to end. Blood thirsty humans have crossed all the boundaries. Nothing is off the table. Reading this poem is painful yet in some way it's poetic expression has a calm effect. All I can do is to pray for peace. May peace prevail in our hearts. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 866 Points John Richter (12/16/2014 11:40:00 AM)

    Very poetic way to portray the depth of humanity's plunge while clutched in the grip of bloody, senseless war. (Report) Reply

  • Gold Star - 33,871 Points Aftab Alam Khursheed (12/16/2014 2:04:00 AM)

    very beautiful Famines of thought and feeling. Love's wine's thin.The grain of human Autumn rots, down-hurled.thanks for share (Report) Reply

  • Bronze Star - 6,820 Points * Sunprincess * (12/16/2013 6:08:00 PM)

    so very sad he was killed at the age of 25, a week before the armistice was signed...
    it's nice how he put four seasons in this poem.... (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 1,580 Points Michael Morgan (12/16/2013 3:54:00 PM)

    It's really gross the way this smarmy poem avoids the issue of English responsibility for WW1 (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 147 Points Manonton Dalan (12/16/2012 6:30:00 AM)

    war is, is always dreadful
    far so ugly than beautiful
    tears is life but otherwise
    mangled flesh, blind eyes
    yet blood-thirsty ground
    insatiable craves crown (Report) Reply

  • Rookie Kevin Straw (12/16/2009 7:11:00 AM)

    A great prophetic poem foreshadowing T S Eliot's 'The Wasteland' and the retreat of modern art after WWI into abstraction and subjectivity. The more I read Owen the bigger he gets as a poet. (Report) Reply

  • Rookie - 294 Points Ramesh T A (12/16/2009 2:16:00 AM)

    Seasonal change of life situation due to war depicted by Wilfred Owen weaves a fabric rich in texture to remember that war as souvenir beautiful! (Report) Reply

Read all 12 comments »

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