Derek Walcott

“To set out for rehearsals in that quivering quarter-hour is to engage conclusions, not beginnings, for one walks past the guilded hallucinations of poverty with a corrupt resignation touched by details, as if the destitute, in their orange-tinted back yards, under their dusty trees, or climbing into their favelas, were all natural scene designers and poverty were not a condition but an art. Deprivation is made lyrical, and twilight, with the patience of alchemy, almost transmutes despair into virtue. In the tropics nothing is lovelier than the allotments of the poor, no theater is as vivid, voluble, and cheap.”


Derek Walcott, What the Twilight Says: Essays
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What the Twilight Says: Essays What the Twilight Says: Essays by Derek Walcott
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