The Poet As Hero

By Siegfried Sassoon 1886–1967 Siegfried Sassoon
You've heard me, scornful, harsh, and discontented, 
   Mocking and loathing War: you've asked me why 
Of my old, silly sweetness I've repented— 
   My ecstasies changed to an ugly cry. 

You are aware that once I sought the Grail, 
   Riding in armour bright, serene and strong; 
And it was told that through my infant wail 
   There rose immortal semblances of song. 

But now I've said good-bye to Galahad, 
   And am no more the knight of dreams and show: 
For lust and senseless hatred make me glad, 
   And my killed friends are with me where I go. 
Wound for red wound I burn to smite their wrongs; 
And there is absolution in my songs.

Source: Cambridge Magazine (1916)

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Poet Siegfried Sassoon 1886–1967

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Georgian

Subjects Living, Death, Sorrow & Grieving, Social Commentaries, War & Conflict, Mythology & Folklore, Fairy-tales & Legends, Heroes & Patriotism

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 Siegfried  Sassoon

Biography

Siegfried Sassoon is best remembered for his angry and compassionate poems of the First World War, which brought him public and critical acclaim. Avoiding the sentimentality and jingoism of many war poets, Sassoon wrote of the horror and brutality of trench warfare and contemptuously satirized generals, politicians, and churchmen for their incompetence and blind support of the war. His later poems, often concerned with religious . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Death, Sorrow & Grieving, Social Commentaries, War & Conflict, Mythology & Folklore, Fairy-tales & Legends, Heroes & Patriotism

POET’S REGION England

SCHOOL / PERIOD Georgian

Poetic Terms Sonnet

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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