Poetry

HE DIDN’T UNDERSTAND.

By 2nd December 2015December 9th, 2019No Comments

There was panic in the valleys

As he story filtered through

That our pit was due for closure

And there’s nothing we could do.

Our way of life in Ystrad

Was known for miles around

As a warm and caring village

Where the men worked underground.

Our choir was plauded nation wide

The soccer team was tops

The DARTSY brew was local beer

Made from malt and hops.

The Ystrad Rugby team front row

Was known throughout the land

And all of you have surely heard

Of our famous colliery band.

Despite all this, the cabinet

Who sit in number ten

Had shattered life for all of us

With a swift stroke of the pen.

Uncle Ted was mortified

He couldn’t stem his tears

He’d laboured at the coal face

For forty eight long years.

Coal mining had been his life

Since he was just a lad

He recalled his first day vividly

When he went down with his dad.

He said “ There’s coal in Ystrad Main

For twenty years or more

I dearly hope they’ll think again

Before they slam the door “.

The Reverend Geronwy Pugh

Held meetings in the church

To study various contracts

And conduct a thorough search.

For documents to stem the tide

But it was all in vain

And then the big wheel ceased to turn

Atop of Ystrad Main.

The ministers refused our pleas

All argument was banned

They’d buy the coal from China now

We’d have to understand.

As weeks went by our village

Became a hollow shell

Shutters went up on the Colliers Arms

The library closed as well.

Our lovely choir disbanded

“Pro Tem”, was what they said

But no-one felt like singing

The atmosphere was dead.

The young men left the village

For Cardiff most were bound

To search for new employment

There was none underground.

Gradually they went at first

But soon t’was more and more

Ystrad’s now a shadow

Of the place we knew before.

Uncle Ted stepped off last night

I’m sure he had it planned

The poor old sod just cut his throat

HE DIDN’T UNDERSTAND.

Alan Parry-Booth

Author Alan Parry-Booth

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