Vonnegut's first essay discusses his life as a soldier, young, just a kid, and the experience of taking cover, listening to the bombs hit overhead.The beginning thus suggests youth, and as the essays move on there is a sense of aging, even though Vonnegut loves to jump back and forth chronologically, sometimes by decades in the same chapter.
One of the key ideas Kurt Vonnegut discusses, and then reiterates, throughout the entire work is that humor is a natural defense mechanism to deal with all the horrible things in the world we live in.
While defying the natural plot would be common for most works, there is still a sense of movement.
He also says that the United States' war in Iraq is nothing like World War II.
Vonnegut's experiences as a soldier gives him credibility on these matters, as he also spirals off into discussions on religion, the teachings of Jesus, the environment and horrible things that humanity does to it.
On a note of optimism, he points out that his soul is the same as it was in heaven, except that now, in hell, it is free.
His speech thus serves as a private pep talk, a way of reminding himself that he can use his imagination to overcome the significant spiritual and physical pain he is experiencing in hell.
Milton puts Satan’s words to the test by emphasizing the fallen angels’ torment throughout the poem.
Despite their suffering, Milton shows that the fallen angels have an indomitable will, capable of transforming grave disadvantages into opportunities for progress and renewal.
Whatever Satan’s imaginative powers may be, they cannot erase the scars of thunder that were etched into his face during the war with God.
Satan himself refers to “a dire change hateful to utter,” suggesting that he is succumbing to the external torments of hell.