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Smelter

By: Alice
Competition Year: 2013
Votes (0) | Comments (0)
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And so it was since Roman times
That man took the lead from the land
Plunging ever deeper to take to poison from the earth
Mining the wealth
Then to the furnaces, the forges, the factories
The smelter rises up out of the valleys
White hot heat
The viscous molten lead flows
Cast in three ton blocks
Like dense metallic bathtubs
Lying in the uneven yard
The air thick with lead
Dust masks must be worn at all time
The acrid stench of hot metal, acid, chlorine
Dust masks must be worn at all time
Water samples, stack tests, blood tests
Dust masks must be worn at all times
On site
The sprawling mass of dirty black buildings
Juxtaposed against rolling Derbyshire hills
Where the deer roam freely
Their fawns playing amongst the grass
Lush and green
The bee orchid, delicate and rare
Fighting up amidst the cooling towers, the foundry
The toxic leaden soil
Nurtures the fragile
Cultivates beauty
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