WW1 course, Lesson 1 – ‘The truth untold’: soldier poets as reporters.

Hello all,

Thank you for coming to the first session of the course. I enjoyed meeting those who are new to my courses and it was lovely to see so many familiar faces as well.

This is my first blog post ever!! Do feel free to post your thoughts about today’s session and the poems and prose extracts we read, and also to respond to other people’s thoughts.  To do so, please click on ‘Leave a comment’ at the top of this post.

Here are a few questions to get you started:

1. The poppies in Rosenberg’s poem ‘drop, and are ever dropping’ because they are rooted in blood, whereas the poppy he has picked from the parapet is described as ‘safe.’ How does Rosenberg use irony throughout the poem and do you think it is effective?

2. In what ways did the Expressionist poems differ from Owen’s and Rosenberg’s poems? Which did you prefer and why?

3. Having read the prose extracts, do any of you plan to read the books from which they are taken? If so, which book are you most likely to read and why?