The Forgiveness of Nature

In metallic forests

Of the industrial hinterland

Foul stacks loom

And belch blue flares,

Orange aureoles radiate

From steel spires,

Stinking clouds mushroom

From smoking fires

In the poisonous laboratories

Of environmental Armageddon.

When the chemical onslaught is over,

Factories and chimneys will disappear.

Nature will return, filling the hollows

Formed by mining year on year,

Linking a chain of shallow dykes and meres.

Then a different skein of steam will escape

Across the vast ruins of cooling towers:

The bright smoke of swans,

A flock of lost angels, wild white flowers:

A token of Nature’s forgiveness for destroying her landscape.


© Kim M. Russell, 2015

Whooper Swan

Image found on



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