Wilfred Owen, the only soldier-poet on the (entirely random) shortlist, finished out of the medals in fourth place, having led for much of the race. Judith Palmer of the Poetry Society explains that voting for Owen had been 'fuelled by a rise in the number of soldiers being killed in Afghanistan over the summer, when the number of British fatalities topped 200 for the first time.' So we like Owen more when our soldiers are being killed. Between Eliot and Owen came the unlikely pairing of John Donne and Benjamin Zephaniah. Which is proof, if any were needed, that these polls are harmless additions to the jollity of life.