Dulce et Decorum est

Dulce et Decorum est
If your thinking she is either mad or speaks multiple languages its neither, but I wish I had the capbility of expressing my self using words beyond English and Arabic. The title is derived from a poem, I don’t read much poetry, but this “Dulce et Decorum est” is a poem that I fell in love with in highschool and for some reason it has managed to cross my mind, so allow me to share some thoughts.
The English poem with the latin title is by Wilfred Owen, where the first words of latin are taken from an Ode by Horace, words that were widely understood and often quotes at the start of the World War’s, the words literally mean “It is sweet and right”….where as the full saying by the Ode is actually  “Dulce et decorum est pro patria mori” meaning it is sweet and right to die for your country.
I remember back in college I had to write a paper to an editor who was promoting joining the army as an alternative to a proper education, this was back in 2007, and my letter was addressed to Rosa Hayes who wrote  “3 reasons to join the military”. At first I wrote it because it was an assignment by one of my professors Dr. Naseer Al Omari, but then I ended up sending the letter to the editor but of-course never hot a reply, here is how it goes.
Dear Mrs. Hayes,

I was reading your editorial “3 reasons to join the military” published on the 9th of July 2007 and have a few thoughts to share with you. I believe that the incentives you included in your
article to encourage the American youth to join the military are unreasonable, being heroic for fighting for your country, getting a free education and getting paid for it is merely shallow excuses to join the military. True … without the army, navy, marines and all, who’s going to defend your country, after all, some one has to do the job, but brainwashing the youth to believing its purely heroic and patriotic is everything an education will never teach them because they’d be dead by the time they learn the bitter truth.

The media has a tendency of painting a picture perfect image about war, battles and hero’s but for once I want you to sit back and think about the other side of the story. One of my favorite poems is called “Dulce Et Decorum Est” by Wilfred Owen, written about the first world war, in the poem he paints the images, of dead troops left behind without a proper burial, men suffocating on gas, being shot or bombed to death or melting away from acid.

Although the Latin poem title would have fit your article perfectly since it means “it is sweet and right to die for your country” yet Owen ends the poem by saying:

“To children ardent for some desperate glory, The old Lie; Dulce et Decorum est. Pro patria mori.”

Perhaps you should excuse my controversial way of writing you a letter and using a poem to illustrate my point, but nothing better than great literature was able to put my thoughts in writing. Please do reconsider an editorial explaining the good, the bad and the ugly, after all the adolescences should decided to know the pro’s and con’s for joining the military, don’t you think?!

Needless to say I never heard back from that Editor, but I still managed to Ace that class, I believe it is the art of fiction, and what i cant believe is that four years later, I still have this letter which I have emailed to my professor as an assignment.

Director of Digital Marketing Strategy by Day, Blogger by Night. Mother to my lovely Hana and a food addict.

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  1. I used to have a fake tattoo during high school that depicted “dulce e decorum est pro patria mori” on my back and wrist. lol

    it is such a bad ass message (especially in latin) removed it but still lives on. brought a smile to my face when i spotted this on your blog. cheers 🙂

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