Imagination vs. Reality: a analysis of Siegfried Sassoons poem,"Dreamers"

February 18, 2011
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Hearing everybody talking about Disney World at school and on television as “the happiest place on earth”, I had to go and find this out for myself. So when my family and I went to this “magical” adventure, I had in my mind already this idea of a wonderful; awesome place that had everything a seven year-old would have dreamed of. When I got there and stayed for about three days, Disney World wasn’t all it was crack up to be. Crying babies, people throwing up in the train--it wasn't what I expected. Siegfried Sassoon describes a similar experience in his poem “Dreamers”. See, in this poem its talks about how here in the United States some people thinks the war is good and there are no side effects about being over there and seeing all of the shooting and killing, but when they actually get over into the war it is not at all what they expected, Imagination vs. Reality. Their imagination of being a hero doesn’t match the reality of all the violence that goes on in the war.

The speaker says “Soldiers are citizens of deaths grey land”(1). I believe that the author is talking about how the soldiers are over to the foreign country for so long that there almost considered citizens of that country because they have been over there for so long. And when he talks about the “deaths grey land”(1) is that how much the war drains you from being home(not being home is already a death some might say) and how the sky is full with smoke from all the gun fire. He uses the repetition of the “s” sound, as seen in the words “Soldiers,” “citizens,” and “deaths.” This hissing sound reminds me of the launch of a flare gun going in the air to brighten up the battlefield. Also, in the second line it states “Drawing no divided in times to-morrows….great hour of destiny they stand,” The author uses alliteration and sounds with the “d” ‘s in “Drawing,” “Dividend,” and “Destiny.” I believe that Sassoon tried to make the soldiers sound strong/bold during combat by marching from one place to another.

In the third and fourth line of the first stanza the speaker states “ Soldiers are sworn to action; they must win/ Some flaming, fatal climax with their lives. This statement to me represents them fighting hard in the battlefield and trying not to get killed. “ Soldiers are sworn to action” reminds me of the soldiers being trapped and not able to get out of the war unless they are either dead of wounded. The author uses some alliteration in this sentence with the “f” sound in “ Flaming” and “fatal.” “ Some Flaming fatal climax with their lives” represents that most of the soldiers have all these emotions during the war that's why I think Sassoon used Flaming and Fatal.

In the lines nine and ten, Sassoon talked about how he sees the war though his mind , like he said that he sees then in “foul Dug-outs”, and “ruined trenches”. Sassoon uses Imagery to get a picture in the readers mind to get the message that the living conditions are horrible. Then, he gets into the deeper things that makes the poem juicy. What I got out of these lines in the second stanza is that the soldiers that he is taking about have kidded the bucket. The speaker says “ Dreaming of things they did with balls and bats/And mocked with hopeless longing to regain ,” “Dreaming of things they did with balls and bats,” makes me think of their thinking back to when they were young, and in a sense re-thinking their life. “ And mocked with hopeless longing to regain” represents that fate has caught up with them and now that their dying their thinking “ oh, I shouldn't have came over here”.

Now to the main line in this poem “ Soldiers are dreamers; when the guns began/ They think of firelit homes, clean beds and wives.” Well, I agree with Sassoon that Soldiers are Dreamers because they expect/dream of going over there to the war and killing a lot of people and getting all these medals but in reality thousands of them get killed over there. And soldiers always think of home “ They think of firelit homes,clean beds and wives” the soldiers are over the was and ready to go home. Now, I personally thank all of our troops/soldiers that have ever served in any of the wars. Every time I see a veteran of war I try to make an attempt to thank them for their service. God Bless our Troops.





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Thoreau420 said...
Aug. 30, 2011 at 4:29 pm
I liked your connection between your personal life and the poem, showing that it does represent real life situations, however, your paper could have been much more convincing and powerful. There were a few proofreading errors, mostly with quotation placement, but those are minor. The big issue was overused phrases, and phrases that hurt your paper. Thing like "I think" "I Believe" and "Makes me think" sabotages the potential effectiveness your paper could hold. the reader knows you believe in th... (more »)
 
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