I thought the most surprising thing I saw was the fact there even was a World War I Poets Exhibition in Second Life. Additionally, the recordings and research of these poets in that section indicated quite a bit of effort was put into this exhibition. I was amazed at the quality of the sound for being recorded from such a long time ago. Hearing the words with images and sounds made some of the poems, especially “Dulce et Decorum Est,” more graphic than the words alone. A gas attack must have been horrible to experience.
I have read about World War I and all the atrocious conditions the soldiers endured, and this site helped to remind me of that time as well as give me the British perspective. Reading ahead, I was surprised at how many of the poets on the reading list were soldiers. Only Teresa Hooley was spared the first-hand experience, but, being a mother, she felt the pain and sorrow of loss that war brings. It was also surprising how many of the poets experienced what we know today as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. It certainly affected the pessimism in their poems. It was interesting to me how this pessimism was portrayed in Second Life. The poems and the war exhibition remind me that most wars start out glorifying the reasons for the conflict, but the horror and loss always creates an alternate reality that eclipses everything.