Owen took command and led the men to a place where he held the line for several hours from a captured German pill box, the only cover available. The use of irony, word choice, and powerful images, all create the sense of atmosphere in each stanza.
He experienced an astonishing period of creative energy that lasted through several months, until he returned to France and the heavy fighting in the fall of He did not live long enough for this indignation or the war experiences of September and October to become part of his poetry, although both are vividly expressed in his letters.
While similar in outlook, Owen's poems are more lush, more sympathetic, and more lyrical; the Poetry Foundation's account of Owen's skill explains, "he revealed a technical versatility and a mastery of sound through complex patterns of assonance, alliteration, dissonance, consonance, and various other kinds of slant rhyme - an experimental method of composition which went beyond any innovative versification that Sassoon achieved during his long career.
He was bitterly angry at Clemenceau for expecting the war to be continued and for disregarding casualties even among children in the villages as the Allied troops pursued the German forces. They were under machine-gun fire, shelled by heavy explosives throughout the cold march, and were almost unconscious from fatigue when the poison-gas attack occurred.
Brock, and the coincidental arrival of Siegfried Sassoon brought forth the poet and the creative outpouring of his single year of maturity.
In October Owen wrote of his satisfaction at being nominated for the Military Cross because receiving the award would give him more credibility at home, especially in his efforts to bring the war to an end.
In fact, the poem consists of seven stanzas which can be grouped to distinguish five stages of his life. The title is part of the Latin phrase 'Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori' which means 'It is sweet and right to die for your country'. Here the use of the capital letter reinforces the feeling through personification.
Young men were eager to join the armed forces, as they thought the glory and heroism of war would be enjoyable. Next to each title he wrote a brief description of the poem, and he also prepared in rough draft a brief, but eloquent, preface, in which he expresses his belief in the cathartic function of poetry.