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A City's Death By Fire Analysis

Author: poem of Derek Walcott Type: poem Views: 9

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After that hot gospeller has levelled all but the churched sky,

I wrote the tale by tallow of a city's death by fire;

Under a candle's eye, that smoked in tears, I

Wanted to tell, in more than wax, of faiths that were snapped like wire.

All day I walked abroad among the rubbled tales,

Shocked at each wall that stood on the street like a liar;

Loud was the bird-rocked sky, and all the clouds were bales

Torn open by looting, and white, in spite of the fire.

By the smoking sea, where Christ walked, I asked, why

Should a man wax tears, when his wooden world fails?

In town, leaves were paper, but the hills were a flock of faiths;

To a boy who walked all day, each leaf was a green breath

Rebuilding a love I thought was dead as nails,

Blessing the death and the baptism by fire.

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