My Wales For all the Welsh folk living abroad, who now and again feel a little bit homesick. Heart and soul, I cherish this country of mine, land of my birth, where song and poetry entwine. Our Celtic culture, shrouded in legend and myth, ‘Y Ddraig Goch’ overseeing, with fiery breath. Rugged coastlines, and rolling green hills, landscapes to behold, unfeigned hiraeth instilled. Built on coal, as brave miners toiled, and sweat, lives that were sacrificed, we must never forget. Blessed natural beauty, stunning scenery adorning, in the blink of an eye, resplendently transforming. ‘Mae Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau’ branded on our souls, as choirs sing in unison, regaling with hwyl. A harp being plucked, a melody that resonates, memories vivid, if one could only perpetuate. Welsh cakes, cawl, cockles, food from the Gods, mountain ponies running wild, completely unshod. Shimmering blue slate, once the finest in the world, national parks which have been blessedly conserved. On thermals gracefully gliding, eagles, red kites, before swooping for vermin, a spectacular sight. Wildlife in abundance, blue nosed dolphins at play, on a hot summer’s day, such a magnificent display Love spoons and coracles, symbols of our ancestry, waterfalls, lakes, Margam fallow deer roaming free. Castles by the dozen, where battles were won, defeating usurpers, bravery second to none. Lush pastures adorn, our valleys and vales, unforgettable sights, when discovering Wales. A festival unique, an Eisteddfod just sets us apart, where minstrels and bards, all play their part. Bright yellow daffodils, Cymru’s national flower, along with the leek, two symbols that empower. Land of my fathers, I honour with passion and pride, when I left her shores, a small part of me died. My inner emotions prevail, whenever I return, this land of my dreams, I forever will yearn.
An Industry Now Lost When coal was King, Welsh valleys thrived, now just a memory, politically contrived. Deep in the bowels, brave men burrowed, scraping a living, souls willingly bestowed. Methane and dust, underground enemies, savage takers of life, both devoid of serenity. On bellies crawling, stripped to the waist, as danger lurked, an environment innate. A band of brothers, tunnelling without fear, visible blue scars, blood, sweat, and tears, A dark, dusty hell hole, coal faces extreme, brutal widow makers, a master supreme. An industry decimated, communities deprived, no hope of prosperity, a government despised. A workforce abandoned, maliciously maligned, robbed of their heritage, to history consigned. Skeletal winding gear, now a legacy of the past, rusty, sadly forsaken, with black shadows cast. A camaraderie unique, only memories remain, tales from the abyss, pride, passion, and pain.
War Horse I remember it well, as if yesterday, my master cried, but he had to obey. Uniformed men, they stole me that day, my future now destined, a land far away. Down to the port, with thousands like me, winched on a ship, our fate history. We landed in France, not knowing our worth, paddocked together, no peace on earth. Shell blasts I heard, far away in the distance, all new to me, the night sky it glistened. That is the night, death hit home to me, a ‘war horse’ my fate, that's how it would be. The following day, a task I was given, pulling a canon, so unforgiving. Mile after mile, slowly, and tiring, shells bursting around, brave men lay dying. Once at the front, harness undone, back down the line, a hero unsung, Fed and watered, I lay down to rest, this foreign field, would be my bequest. Four years I toiled, carnage abounding, pulling the canon, gunfire resounding. I lost many friends, to gas and shell, that smell of death, made heaven a hell. Peace came at last, it had taken its toll, horses and men, many lost souls. The stench of death, with me forever, brave men, and horse in heaven together. We played our part in that abhorrent war, while enemy soldiers spilled each other's gore. I had never planned, to follow this course, home I am now, a strong proud ‘war horse’.
All poems ©️ Arthur Cole. If you’d like your poetry to be featured on a Sunday, in any or many languages, drop Your Editrix a line.