Polish and Ukrainian poetry on World War I have much in common: they were written mainly by soldier-poets, young men fighting in the Polish Legions or the Ukrainian Sich Riflemen. This poetry is, first of all, a patriotic legitimation of the war as a way of regaining political independence. Heroism and suffering for the fatherland are dominating issues. Nevertheless, besides this pathetic gesture, we can find voices that point out the horror of war and question it at all. Such criticisms is expressed by certain motives, which appear in both the Legions’ and the Sich Riflemens’ poetry, like: fratricide, lists from soldiers to their families at home, devastation of nature and culture, autumn and death, as well as pacifist notions. These voices do not form any dominant discourse in the poetry on World War I, but they are not to be ignored, as they mark a common place in the Polish and Ukrainian literature at this time, which has not been researched until now.