Personally, I found the poem Machine Gun to be quite simple and lacked to find a hidden or profound meaning. On the other hand, in Wilfred Owen’s poems I could easily get lost and will have to imagine or try to understand his current situation within each stanza. Particularly,  in the last stanza of a Strange Meeting where I did not realize that he died and was in the afterlife. However, I must admit that it feels refreshing to understand a poet so easily. I am used already to feeling confused and mislead. Furthermore, I found it interesting how in both poems it culminated with only two men standing. Perhaps, both Owen and Aldington were quite lucky and often encountered them being alone with the enemy. It also seems that they both decide not to do anything. Pursuing this further, I envision them both disagreeing with the whole concept of war. I envision deep scars within their souls and wicked nightmares full of blood, mud and shots.

On the other hand, with Siegfried Sassoon there is more meaning and symbolism. Specifically, in the poem Dreamers, where he does not glorify the war and speak of heroes. Instead, he tells the thought process that the soldiers go through while on combat “Soldiers are dreamers; when the guns begin. They think of firelit homes, clean beds, and wives”. Throughout them being in the middle of a field far away from home, they still dream and think about their homes and old mundane lives. I see this dream as a symbol of hope. That once the war is over they can go back to play cricket and watch their children grow old.

Karen Mateus