What Is The Tone Of Gas By Wilfred Owen

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The poem follows a group of World War 1 soldiers caught in a gas attack as they return to the trenches after fighting. Owen uses literary techniques such as graphic imagery, simile and alliteration to recreate the sense of terror in the mind of the reader as well as leaving a strong reminder of how immoral and futile war truly is. The second stanza begins with the words; ‘GAS! Gas! Quick, boys!’. This breaks the slow pace of the poem and unexpectedly changes the tone to one of panic rather than reflection. Owen does this to remind the reader that even when troops are returning back to base for rest they can never be off guard and must always be prepared for attack. This idea is reinforced when one of the men fails to put on his gas mask in time and is left ‘floundering like a man in fire or lime.’ This choice of words displays how the gas burnt away at whoever it touched like fire would to skin, the detail he uses is harrowing and emphasizes how painful it would have been to endure.…show more content…
This is another indication of how there is no escape from the horrors of war and although he is sleeping he is still haunted by the faces of the soldiers that have died in such terrible pain. The graphic imagery continues further as we hear of how the narrator still sees ‘the white eyes writhing in his face, / His hanging face, like a devil's sick of sin’. The simile used here evokes a sense of helplessness, it suggests that even the devil would be tired and disgusted by the evil of
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