Since late February it has barely rained.
The river is low. On the far bank
is an oak, scorched, blackened in last year’s storms.
Some way downstream birdsong seems louder,
the wind’s soughing through the leaves more intense.
Suddenly, between the trees, a wide, white path
of broken stones appears. The river has gone!
Somewhere, in this deceiving landscape,
in this bucolic dingle oceans made,
in this valley of lost industry,
dappled, silvery waters hurry,
like lightning, down limestone swallow holes
into the abundant dark.