1. Charles Hamilton Sorley By Ryan Chang and John Li
2. Background Born 19 May 1895 in Aberdeen, Scotland Studied at Marlborough College, Oxford, and the University of Jena in Germany before returning to Britain Volunteered for the army, quickly rose up the ranks Died 13 October 1915 in Hulluch, France Described as one of the three poets of importance killed during the war. Sorley is regarded as one of the greatest losses of poets killed in the war. His last poem was recovered from his kit, and these were the famous lines: o When you see millions of the mouthless dead o Across your dreams in pale battalions go
3. WAR and his death After Britain declared war on Germany, Sorley was detained for an afternoon in Trier, Germany (where he studied). Luckily, he was released on the same day and told to leave the country. He then returned to England and volunteered for military service, joining the Suffolk Regiment. He arrived at the Western Front in France as a lieutenant in May 1915, and quickly rose to the rank of captain at the age of twenty. Sorley was killed in action near Hulluch, where he was shot in the head by a sniper at the Battle of Loos on 13 October 1915.
4. Images of Charles Hamilton Sorley
5. To Germany, -Poem You are blind like us. Your hurt no man designed, And no man claimed the conquest of your land. But gropers both through fields of thought confined. We stumble and we do not understand. You only saw your future bigly planned, And we, the tapering paths of our own mind, And in each other's dearest ways we stand, And hiss and hate. And the blind fight the blind. When it is peace, then we may view again With new-won eyes each other's truer form And wonder. Grown more loving-kind and warm We'll grasp firm hands and laugh at the old pain, When it is peace. But until peace, the storm The darkness and the thunder and the rain.
6. Poem Analysis- language Despite borned in England, Charles studied in Germany and mustve made a connection with this country. He knows that British propaganda saying all Germans are evil is wrong and knows that both sides of men in trenches have the same feeling, fear and confusion. We can see this fact from the poems first section, saying, You are blind like us, your hurt no man designed. And no man claimed the conquest of your land. But gropers both through fields of thought confined. We stumble and we do not understand
7. Continued Analysis The poem itself is trying to express that wars are really useless and are simply just confused and afraid men fighting each other for something they dont even really known what it is. And hiss and hate. And the blind fight the blind. Charles explain that after these futile wars, peace will return and all the wars will have been just like a joke, writing, We'll grasp firm hands and laugh at the old pain, Charles demonstrates that the bewilderment of soldiers on either sides and say how wars are so cruel and macabre like the darkness and thunder rain- But until peace, the storm. The darkness and the thunder and the rain.
8. Poem Analysis- text Rhyme- For almost all ending sentences, the words rhyme with the last word, two sentences above. For example, confined-defined; plan- understand; mind-blind etc. Repetition- Charles continues and repeatedly uses the word And before each sentence. Personal pronoun- The words WE and YOU is often used, so that the poem is strengthened. Metaphor- Charles describes the war as a dark thunderstorm, But until peace, the storm. The darkness and the thunder and the rain.
9. When You See Millions of the Mouthless Dead - Poem When you see millions of the mouthless dead Across your dreams in pale battalions go, Say not soft things as other men have said, That you'll remember. For you need not so. Give them not praise. For, deaf, how should they know It is not curses heaped on each gashed head? Nor tears. Their blind eyes see not your tears flow. Nor honour. It is easy to be dead. Say only this, "They are dead." Then add thereto, "Yet many a better one has died before." Then, scanning all the o'ercrowded mass, should you Perceive one face that you loved heretofore, It is a spook. None wears the face you knew. Great death has made all his for evermore.
10. Poem Analysis The poem is written in present tense, so that readers have a sense of actually being in the war and look upon a field of dead men. The poem is said to a soldier, saying that they should not mourn for the dead, and avoid pity because they cannot hear you anymore. It describes the harsh reality of war, with most of the soldiers beloved or dead no longer alive or captured.
11. Poem Analysis (continued) Charles Hamilton Sorley was a battle hardened captain in the British army, and had likely seen lots of death and war, therefore he might become indifferent to death and realize that no amount of mourning could bring his dead friends back, for they are already dead. The title, When you See Millions of the Mouthless Dead builds anticipation and interest in the poem. It also paints a vivid image of what is happening in the wars with millions of soldiers now mouthless. Mouthless may mean powerlessness, as they are unable to speak or have their voices heard.
12. Poem Analysis - Techniques 2nd person - the poem is written in the second person, with the author telling the reader what is going on, and what they do. Rhyming - makes the poem more catchy and easy to remember, like a song. (ex. dead, said; go, so) Imperative - tells you what to do, a feeling of instruction and action. (ex. Say only this) Rhetorical questions - makes you think about the question? (ex. It is not curses heaped on each gashed head?)
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