Wilfred Owen

(1893-1918 / Shropshire / England)

Asleep - Poem by Wilfred Owen

Under his helmet, up against his pack,
After so many days of work and waking,
Sleep took him by the brow and laid him back.

There, in the happy no-time of his sleeping,
Death took him by the heart. There heaved a quaking
Of the aborted life within him leaping,
Then chest and sleepy arms once more fell slack.

And soon the slow, stray blood came creeping
From the intruding lead, like ants on track.

Whether his deeper sleep lie shaded by the shaking
Of great wings, and the thoughts that hung the stars,
High-pillowed on calm pillows of God's making,
Above these clouds, these rains, these sleets of lead,
And these winds' scimitars,
-Or whether yet his thin and sodden head
Confuses more and more with the low mould,
His hair being one with the grey grass
Of finished fields, and wire-scrags rusty-old,
Who knows? Who hopes? Who troubles? Let it pass!
He sleeps. He sleeps less tremulous, less cold,
Than we who wake, and waking say Alas!


Comments about Asleep by Wilfred Owen

  • (2/12/2019 7:55:00 PM)

    I take wickets for fun (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • (2/12/2019 7:54:00 PM)

    this was a ripper of a poem thanks Will (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • (1/10/2019 11:39:00 AM)

    I love this poem I am 11years old (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • (12/22/2018 5:07:00 AM)

    The poem grew love of motherland this is a nice poem (Report)Reply

    0 person liked.
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  • (10/19/2018 3:39:00 AM)

    I think it’s a really nice poem I’m also only 11 (Report)Reply

    1 person liked.
    4 person did not like.
  • (1/2/2018 6:17:00 AM)

    its dreadful listen to mans not hot! ! ! big shaq (Report)Reply

    8 person liked.
    9 person did not like.
  • (5/16/2016 1:27:00 PM)

    I love this poem even though i am a kid only 11. Love Wilfred Owen especially Dulce et decorem est (Report)Reply

    15 person liked.
    21 person did not like.
  • (9/9/2014 4:06:00 AM)

    The hardships meted out a soldier and finally sleeps a wonderful imagination and eye opening against the war and loss thereafter.Also a symbolic poem with such meanings. (Report)Reply

    22 person liked.
    17 person did not like.
  • Aftab Alam Khursheed (9/9/2014 3:20:00 AM)

    In this poem one thing to be noted..work continuously to earn and take care of his family..it is responsibility envisaged to us..We are responsible....Second part - tired we sleep- -slumber or death more we tired more we feel sleepy..Age is a weight like thing we are tired to carry and sleep for ever...helmet is symbolized as safety..yet when night comes we fall asleep nice one (Report)Reply

    15 person liked.
    24 person did not like.
  • Dawn Fuzan (4/27/2014 3:48:00 PM)

    I like this one, its Good (Report)Reply

    17 person liked.
    14 person did not like.
  • Krishnakumar Chandrasekar Nair (9/22/2013 11:01:00 AM)

    So many of such innocent ones
    Laid their heads on snow and grass
    Marking their fall by streaks of red
    In every war that extracted its toll in human blood
    (Report)Reply

    16 person liked.
    17 person did not like.
  • (9/9/2013 4:06:00 PM)

    Now nothing fret regarding earnings. Our Company wants home users for his or her monetary reportings. I created $3576 this Month already...Here is that the website for additional data.]]] WW­W.B­AR­17.?­O? Already ReportedReply

    11 person liked.
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  • Manohar Bhatia (9/9/2013 9:00:00 AM)

    This is an excellent poem on sleep & work. Man slogs throughout his life to maintain his family, parents and others dfependent on him.At the end of the day, he becomes dog tired and sleeps under his helmet, just as a shouldier.Sometimes, the man or the military man may be dead, exhausting his time on this earth.
    Manohar Bhatia.
    (Report)Reply

    21 person liked.
    24 person did not like.
  • Muzaffer Akin (9/9/2013 1:53:00 AM)

    Excellent a poem.Congratulations. (Report)Reply

    11 person liked.
    28 person did not like.
  • Ramesh T A (9/9/2011 3:05:00 AM)

    Life of hard working men ends so finally which is well said by Wilfred Owen in a simple way! He works ever and sleeps finally! But others never sleep and one day wake to see to say alas for his loss! This is the world life we should know! Wonderful poem! (Report)Reply

    16 person liked.
    38 person did not like.
  • Pranab K Chakraborty (9/9/2011 2:04:00 AM)

    He sleeps. He sleeps less tremulous, less cold,
    Than we who wake, and waking say Alas! .....

    MUCH FOR OUR HELPLESSNESS. Great work.
    (Report)Reply

    17 person liked.
    30 person did not like.
  • (9/9/2009 1:17:00 PM)

    Wilfred Owen, along with Siegfried Sassoon and Rupert Brooke, is one of the great poetic chroniclers of WW1. His work (e.g. with slant rhymes, etc) was innovative, and worthy of study today. His death, and Keats', at a tragically early age, I consider to be among the greatest losses English poetry has ever suffered. (Report)Reply

    17 person liked.
    34 person did not like.
  • Kevin Straw (9/9/2009 5:43:00 AM)

    I am not sure how the blood coming from the soldier's wound is like 'ants on track'. Could the last section have been tightened up a little? It seems a bit foggy at times. (Report)Reply

    (9/9/2014 11:12:00 AM)

    If it seeped out in a narrow rivulet, it could look like a column of ants. He was there.

    9 person liked.
    37 person did not like.
  • (3/31/2009 4:56:00 AM)

    this is such a beutifull poem, im studying wilfred owens poems at school and this is just great (Report)Reply

    13 person liked.
    31 person did not like.
  • (1/11/2009 8:00:00 AM)

    I LOVE THIS ONE.....

    SOMETIMES I JUST WANT FALL ASLEEP FOREVER! ! ! !

    i really love it
    (Report)Reply

    14 person liked.
    32 person did not like.
Read all 22 comments »




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Read poems about / on: sleep, work, happy, hair, death, god, time, heart, life, rain, wind, star, hope



Poem Submitted: Friday, January 3, 2003



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