Home icon. The Works of Robert Graves. Exhibition: 1 April to 17 June 2011.

Cabinet 9: Siegfried Sassoon

The War Poems.

Siegfried Sassoon, The War Poems. London: William Heinemann, 1919.

In May 1915, Siegfried Sassoon (1886-1967) obtained a commission with the Royal Welch Fusiliers, and later went to France as an officer in ‘C’ Company, First Battalion. By the time Graves met his fellow Fusilier and poet, Sassoon had already published poetry, albeit in small limited editions.

Although poetry was one important link between them (they edited each other’s poems), Sassoon disliked some of Graves’s poetry, commenting privately that they were ‘very bad, violent and repulsive.’

Sassoon later became one of the leading War poets, and many of his poems about the war are a mix of gritty realism, and the senselessness and absurdity of combat.