Describing animation in QDMF?

1. Trying to reproduce an effect described in Advanced animation and rendering techniques

I am trying to write a renderman shader to reproduce a flame shape
described in Advanced animation and rendering techniques by Watt &
Watt. The description is at page 211. Basically they are saying that
you can get the flame shape by using the following function:

flame(P) = (1 - y/h) flame_colour(abs(x/b)) where  P = (x,y)

where the flame is defined in the 2D rectangle going form (-b,0) to
(b,h)

Flame_colour is a function that returns the color of the flame along a
scalar value. My question is how can you get the round shape of the
flame by simply multiplying the flame_colour with (1-y/h)? This will
not produce any round shape but will simply attenuate the color along
the y axis which is not what we are looking for. This looks like an
error to me. Any help would be appreciated.

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