" Probably armed, possibly not"
- repeated twice
- feels guilty afterwards
- repetitive- his mind set is relentless, cannot move on
- can't escape his guilty mindset
- repeated throughout stanza 2
- passes the blame around
- putting blame on others to make himself feel better
" I see every round as it rips through his life"
- image replaying in his mind
- brutal, cruel image
"He's here in my head when I close my eyes/ dug in behind enemy lines"
- as if he has dug himself into his head
- haunting him
" his bloody life in my bloody hands"
- self critisism
- hates himself for what he did
- accepted responsibility, no longer using personal pronoun ' we '
- Two lined stanza at the end
- comes to an abrupt stop, mirroring how the 'looter's' life came to a quick end
" as though this were a church and he/ a priest"
- dedicated to his job
- religious ritual
- serious tone
" all flesh is grass"
- metaphor for death
- we all die eventually
- life is fragile
- religious aspect
" from the aeroplane... and they do not care"
- stares out of window
- feels a failure, links back to his job, he hasn't done it right
- detached from group of people in England, not a part of those suffering from the war, alone in his own group
- reader sympathises with him, feels sorry for him
- organised sestets
- rigid, structured, strict, reflects the importance of his job to him, contrasts with the chaos of war
- ABBCDD rhyme scheme
- moved from different places, the war has displaced him
" but nothing happens"
- shows how repetitive war is
- maybe forgot he already said it, too busy thinking about staying alive, stressed
- long periods of boredom
- although fighting, they aren't tackling the problem
" pale flakes with finger.ing stealth"
- feels vunerable, paranoid
- thinks even the snow is attacking him
" misery of dawn begins to grow..."
- another day, relentless war
- dawn is usually positive, contrasts
- uses lots of para-rhymes which gives it an awkward, jarring edge, reflects how unpleasant war is
- assonance used for the same reason
" placed on individual war graves."
- talking about the poppies being placed on the graves ' three days before Armistice Sunday' - which shows respect and importance, they care
- caesura after the word 'grave' to emphasise it- anti-war, emphasis on death, lots of people die from war
- associated with pain and suffering
- uses violent language to describe something peaceful like a flower
- stops freedom of movement
- describes normal thing like attaching a poppy to a blazer in an aggressive way to reflect violent nature of war
- the son's going off to war and she feels that there is a ' blockade' in their relationship, and that they grew distant when he decided to go off to war
" when you were little. "
- caesura, emphasis on the word 'little'
- maternal gesture
- wishes that she could go back to when he was young
- wants to revisit her memories of his childhood
- talks about Eskimo kisses- loving caress
" blackthorns ... hair. "
- caesura, emphasis
- thorns on head- links to Jesus, who sacrificed his life for others much like soldiers
" released a song bird"
- she feels as if she has let her son fly from the nest, she has let him go, let him be free, much like a mother bird
" leaned against it like a wishbone"
- she's leaning against it like she wants to break it so that she can wish on it so that she can get her son back
- supporting her as well, because she has been left alone with no one to lean on, not even a shoulder to cry on
- lots of words associated with war, uses military diction / military language
- uses lots of caesuras to emphasise the importance of what she is saying and how serious the poem is