Because of the size and scope of the war

Because of the size and scope of the war every able-bodied man was sent to fight, which meant that for the first time in history many of the most educated men in society endured the worst that the war had to offer.  The result: enough poetry and other literature that WWI poetry is a sub-field of it’s own in English Literature.

Below are four famous WWI poems.  Read the poems in the order they are listed (they are listed chronologically).  Then use the poems to answer the following:

  • For each poem, why is the author fighting?
  • For the poems that address it, why is the war continuing?


  • Rupert Brooke, The Solider (Links to an external site.)
  • John McCrae, In Flander’s Fields (Links to an external site.)
  • Wilfred Owen, The Parable of the Old Man and the Young (Links to an external site.)
  • Siegfried Sassoon, Suicide in the Trenches (Links to an external site.)

Be sure to use all four poems in your answer.

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