Dulce et Decorum Est......The Lie  

deliciousngood 65F
1130 posts
7/1/2005 2:18 pm

Last Read:
5/20/2014 10:38 pm

Dulce et Decorum Est......The Lie

Wilfred Owen

Dulce Et Decorum Est

Bent double, like old beggars under sacks,
Knock-kneed, coughing like hags, we cursed through sludge,
Till on the haunting flares we turned our backs
And towards our distant rest began to trudge.
Men marched asleep. Many had lost their boots
But limped on, blood-shod. All went lame; all blind;
Drunk with fatigue; deaf even to the hoots
Of disappointed shells that dropped behind.

GAS! Gas! Quick, boys!-- An ecstasy of fumbling,
Fitting the clumsy helmets just in time;
But someone still was yelling out and stumbling
And floundering like a man in fire or lime.--
Dim, through the misty panes and thick green light
As under a green sea, I saw him drowning.

In all my dreams, before my helpless sight,
He plunges at me, guttering, choking, drowning.

If in some smothering dreams you too could pace
Behind the wagon that we flung him in,
And watch the white eyes writhing in his face,
His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin;
If you could hear, at every jolt, the blood
Come gargling from the froth-corrupted lungs,
Obscene as cancer, bitter as the cud
Of vile, incurable sores on innocent tongues,--
My friend, you would not tell with such high zest
To children ardent for some desperate glory,
The old Lie: Dulce et decorum est
Pro patria mori.

Dona nobis pacem GRANT US PEACE

deliciousngood 65F
1666 posts
7/1/2005 2:28 pm

* note :translation from the Latin:

To die for one's country is sweet and proper

keithcancook 61M
18125 posts
7/4/2005 5:58 pm

War is never pretty, though many causes may be deemed just. Sacrificing ones life for ones country is not simply an ideal. It is sacrifice for family and neighbor. When defense of those we love is the goal then even as horrible a death as described in the lines above should not deter us from giving the "last full measure of our devotion" to our countrymen.

deliciousngood 65F
1666 posts
7/4/2005 7:38 pm

Keith, I agree-in part.

The valor of those who die this wretched death is not at question. What is the point is that old men plan and young men die and it is neither sweet nor proper.

Thanks for the comment. it means a lot.


rm_charm72 45M

9/28/2005 10:42 am


One of the smaller indignities amidst the outrage is what they died for: Ezra Pound said of the same war that W. Owen writes of, "[They died] for a shelf of dusty books and an old bitch gone in the teeth. Said bitch was the British Empire.

One fears that our boys (and girs, too, nowadays) die for books they don't understand, and too few of them at that. It is a noble thing to jump on a grenade to save the man next to you--an act of love really--but no idea is worth dying for. After all, things matter less than people.

This is what happens when people denigrate their bodies and accord them the status of tools. I'm not a wisp that has a body. I'm a soul AND and body. If my body were extraneous to me, I might as well just gratify it amorously when young, gratify it with gourmet food in middle age, and kill it off before old age unravels it. Or else sell it to a volunteer army.

When I'm ninety, I plan to be kissing someone who has just eaten as much garlic as me. How bout yourself?


deliciousngood 65F
1666 posts
10/27/2005 3:05 pm

2000 dead in Iraq....What is WRONG with us???

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