Tosin’s Analysis of “The Yellow Palm”
The poem ‘The Yellow Palm’ is a poem portraying the problems which are present in Bagdad, Iraq; the problems the author experienced. I personally think that the poem shows the experiences which are experienced when walking down ‘Palestine Street’. What can be seen, what happens and how it happens.
In the poem, there is a lot of references which seem to relay the message that there was a lot of heartache in Palestine and that in just one street, all of these tragedies could occur. However, what is Palestine, and why is there a war there? Palestine is an area and Palestinians are the people which live in it. The current conflict is between the Palestinians and the Israelis. The Israelis do not want the Palestinians in Palestine as they believe it is their territory.
So, the heartache quotes. In the first verse, the person narrating the poem (most probably the author) begins to speak of the things which he was seeing ‘I watched a funeral pass’, ‘blood on the walls’ (of a mosque), ‘met two blind beggars’. These quotes seem to suggest that Palestine at the time was a very broken area if you like. There was a lot of struggle.
‘I met two blind beggars // and into their hands I pressed my hands // with a hundred black dinars’’. This quote is an act of support in the sense that, the person saw people who are less well off than he is and therefore decided to give them money, even considering the circumstances that the area is in. The author has used this to show that there is a glimmer of hope and that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
The theme of the poem seems to revolve around the colour yellow, even in the title of the poem yellow is included. Yellow can mean many things, happy – a sunny day. We associate yellow with negative things also as well, such as the yellow of a dead white person; decaying skin. This association is what I think the author has decided to include in this poem. The effect of ‘dead’ is what is pictured when I read this poem.
Also, yellow can resemble a desert; wasteland. A territory which has being run down by the negative conflict which ‘lingers in the air’. The author has made the theme of the poem yellow to create an uninhabited, an inhospitable place to be in.