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About this Poem 

“Crude Lament” was published in The Tempers (Elkin Mathews, 1913). 

Crude Lament

       Mother of flames,
       The men that went ahunting
Are asleep in the snow drifts.
       You have kept the fire burning!
Crooked fingers that pull
Fuel from among the wet leaves,
       Mother of flames
       You have kept the fire burning!
The young wives have fallen asleep
With wet hair, weeping,
       Mother of flames!
The young men raised the heavy spears
And are gone prowling in the darkness.
       O mother of flames,
       You who have kept the fire burning!
       Lo, I am helpless!
Would God they had taken me with them!

This poem is in the public domain. 

This poem is in the public domain. 

William Carlos Williams

William Carlos Williams

Poet, novelist, essayist, and playwright William Carlos Williams is often said to have been one of the principal poets of the Imagist movement.

by this poet

poem
Among the rain
and lights
I saw the figure 5
in gold
on a red
firetruck
moving
tense
unheeded
to gong clangs
siren howls
and wheels rumbling
through the dark city.
poem

I tried to put a bird in a cage.
                O fool that I am!
         For the bird was Truth.
Sing merrily, Truth: I tried to put
                 Truth in a cage!

And when I had the bird in the cage,
                 O fool that I am!
          Why, it broke my pretty cage

poem
It was an icy day.
We buried the cat,
then took her box
and set fire to it

in the back yard.
Those fleas that escaped
earth and fire
died by the cold.