Wilfred Owen — An Introduction
Wilfred Owen (1893-1918) was an English soldier and poet. He wrote poetry on the theme of war. He was born at Plas Wilmot, near Oswestry in Shropshire and was educated at Shrewsbury Technical School and the Birkenhead Institute. He tried to get a scholarship to go to London University but failed. For some days he worked as a teacher and then he joined the Artists’ Rifles as a soldier in 1915. During the First World War, he fought in France in 1917 as a second lieutenant. There he was severely wounded from a shell explosion and then he was sent to the War Hospital near Edinburgh to recover. There he met Siegfried Sassoon, an English war poet who encouraged him to go on writing poetry.
Owen returned to the Front in August 1918 and was soon awarded the Military Cross for bravery. But he was killed in the battlefield on 4th November 1918, seven days before the Armistice was signed.
Wilfred Owen wrote poems off and on from his childhood but only five were printed while Owen was alive. After his death, Sassoon arranged for the publication of Owen’s Collected Poems in 1920.