Wilfred Owen: Poems

anthem for doomed youth

who is reffered to in the opening lines of the poem

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The many soldiers who have died in the first World War are referred to in the opening lines of the poem.

What passing-bells for these who die as cattle?

Only the monstrous anger of the guns.

Only the stuttering rifles' rapid rattle Can patter out their hasty orisons.

No mockeries now for them; no prayers nor bells; Nor any voice of mourning save the choirs, –The shrill, demented

choirs of wailing shells; And bugles calling for them from sad shires.