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Before the war Jessie Pope had been a very successful writer of comedy verse and a prolific contributor to newspapers and magazines. Her pro-war poems were originally published in the Daily Mail as a rallying cry to encourage enlistment. Although today her poems are considered jingoistic her views were very popular at the time. Pope’s poems are simple sing-song rhymes that were intended to stir and inspire young men to do their duty. Poems such as the ‘The Call’ which asks ‘Who’s fretting to begin, Who’s going out to win?’ were a blatant attempt to cajole men into doing their bit. Her poems contrast greatly with the brutal imagery of the later war poets such as Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon. Jessie Pope’s War Poems was the first of three collections of war poetry the others being More War Poetry, (1915) and Simple Rhymes for Stirring Times (1916).

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