Read the poem below then answer the questions that follow


From a distance

Fearful of inching any further,

A cold sweat trickled rivulets,

Making me shiver at noon.

Undaring to approach the form


It was over in minutes,

The necessities of execution availed,

The firestone tyre,

Petrol in blackened tin,

And ignites in numerous hands

Each participant ready and anxious,

To set the man a flame.


As the smouldering form blackened,

Smell of sizzling flesh filling in the air

Piercing the nostrils,

And choking me breathless,

I watched in wonder,

Witness to an unwritten law.


As the crowd dispersed,

The haggling and bargaining resumed,

Buying, selling and cheating,

As men in uniform arrived,

Bearing away the charred remains


  1. a) How relevant is the title of the poem above?                                                                                    (2 marks)
  2. b) Describe the character of the executionists in the poem                                                                          (2 marks)
  3. c) What was needed to carry out the execution? (3 marks)
  4. d) Explain the difference in the use of the word “form” in stanza one and stanza three       (2 marks)
  5. e) (i) Who is the persona ?                                                                                                               (1 mark)

(ii)  What deters the persona from getting closer to the scene of action?                                                       (1 mark)

  1. f) Explain the meaning of the following phrases as used in the poem       (3 marks)
  2. i) Smell of sizzling flesh
  3. ii) Each participant ready and anxious

iii) Witnessed to an unwritten law

  1. g) What mood is portrayed in the poem?                                                                         (2 marks)
  2. h) Paraphrase the last stanza                                                                                                                        (4 marks)
HOD Academics Changed status to publish November 22, 2021