Poem in Planet (Winter 2012)

This poem appeared in issue 208 of Planet, The Welsh Internationalist.

Outflow, Aberthaw

Eels dangle from the lip of the outflow,
each as thick as a man's thigh - ‘and the length of them’ -
the length of them hangs downwards and backwards,
rewinds time and climate up from the dark.

They nose the concrete, pump and pulse their gills
like industrial valves. They love the water's warmth
as it bubbles back to sea, a reverse precipitation.
Its heat has swollen them to muscle, as dense as tyres.

Not for them the inlet where the pebbles shelve and stir,
nor what wetlands and reed-beds the Power Station
boasts to bussed and sullen school parties,
with maps, videos, colour-coded charts.

As the night trains shunt and clang,
unload the carbon mulch of giant ferns,
they mouth and vent, a hundred yards from shore,
grown fat on steam, more bloated than the monsters in the rocks.

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