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DINAS BRÂN, LLANGOLLEN

'Castell Dinas Bran', Richard Wilson, circa 1771



The path zigzags upwards to the keep, like

smoke or a hare hounded. Magpies lowfly

the gorse, bank to a clump of pine, barks pink

as coral. Ravens wheel. Birds and the wind

disdain the ruins peasants carted, raised,

razed and thieved. Before allegiances, walls

was this hill, that vast, limestone precipice

and, everywhere, silent, ancient waters.

Whoever sees the turf worn with walkers’

traffic and earth’s crust shining,

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CROSBY

Another Place ©SCES 2008

We crunch through razor shells and squelch through

blackish silt – there is coal in the drenched sand –

to reach the artist’s cast iron avatars.

They are steadfast against anglers, vandals,

local Tories, jet skiers, the Coastguard,

and the RSPB – but not the wind

or the sea. Some are rusting deeply,

some barnacled already, some sinking

or rising – others missing on this

shifty shore. They have watched the North Sea.

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