A Refusal to Mourn the Death, by Fire, of a Child in London Questions and Answers
by Dylan Thomas

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Please explain the following lines from "A Refusal to Mourn the Death, by Fire, of a Child in London." Deep with the first dead lies London's daughter, Robed in the long friends, The grains beyond age, the dark veins of her mother, Secret by the unmourning water Of the riding Thames. After the first death, there is no other.

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The central point of this poem is the author's radical reassessment of death given his belief that when we die we actually rejoin nature, which is an incredibly powerful force of regeneration and life in the universe. Thus, the speaker says, he deliberately eschews the forms of mourning that humans adopt because they fail to recognise the way that life metamorphosises and continues rather than ceases to be.

In the final stanza, which is the section of the poem that you are asking about, the dead girl that the poem's title refers to is said to join life in her death, becoming reunited with...

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