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From the west front of this Restoration house –

built a century before the demand

for coal brought, in hearing of the brocaded

drawing room, the daily clank and hiss

of the pit head winding gear and the pumps

keeping the seams dry, and, in direct

line of sight of the spacious steps, the slagheap’s

incremental growth on land previously

considered worthless so not purchased –

was a view, across the shallow valley

and extensive pasture land, of benign hills.


The slagheap was treed post-Aberfan,

the pit closed under Thatcher, and the headgear

retained, like the stately home, a monument

to that other country. Under cropped fields

where lambs suckle this February day,

abandoned, expensive machinery

rusts in fallen, inundated seams.




© Copyright David Selzer
1 Response
  • Alan Horne
    February 28, 2020

    This is great, David. Erddig, I guess? Makes me think of the Gresford disaster, also of the old mines in the field behind my house. The notion of what remains down there sticks in the mind.

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