Artilleryman's Vision And Glory: Poem Analysis

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Today, many Civil War veterans have PTSD. According to Mayo Clinic, “Post-traumatic stress disorder is a mental health condition that 's triggered by a terrifying event, either experiencing it or witnessing it. Symptoms may include flashbacks, nightmares and severe anxiety, as well as uncontrollable thoughts about the event” ("Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).”). “The Artilleryman’s Vision” by Walt Whitman and the movie “Glory” both portrayed disturbing experiences of war; however, Whitman’s poem is more personal, vivid, and relatable; therefore, the reader gains a better understanding of how PTSD affects an individual.
“The Artilleryman’s Vision” is about a soldier who has flashbacks of tragic events from a past battle. In this poem, Whitman …show more content…

When the artilleryman is home with his family, he says, “While my wife at my side lies slumbering, and the wars are over long, And my head on the pillow rests at home, and the vacant midnight passes, And through the stillness, through the dark, I hear, just hear, the breath of my infant, There in the room, as I wake from sleep, this vision presses upon me: The engagement opens there and then, in fantasy unreal” (lines 1-5). Whitman suggests that the war will not be forgotten quickly. The memories of battle remain with him long after the war has ended. A symptom of PTSD is increased anxiety, which includes difficulty falling or staying asleep (Smith). Perhaps these nighttime visions will continue to break the artilleryman’s peaceful sleep for the rest of his life. On the other hand, in “Glory,” Shaw did not have a wife or family to go home to, which made the poem more personal because the artilleryman had a wife, an infant child, and a home.
“The Artilleryman’s Vision” was also more vivid compared to “Glory.” The artilleryman, unlike an infantryman, had a better chance of living and a better visual of the war because he would stay in one place and not run around. Describing what he …show more content…

The details of the battle are still precise in the veteran’s mind. The artilleryman is very descriptive in what he saw and heard, and he also made comparisons for the reader to have a better understanding. In “Glory,” the most graphic scene was at the battle of Antietam. When Shaw was in the hospital after the battle, he witnessed an injured soldier screaming horrendously as he suffered through pain. Although these scenes were vivid, the poem was

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