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Sheffield Flood

The Don’s Revenge

by John Stocks

Two hundred years of emasculation
A tamed beast culverted out of sight
Dribbling through the stagnant pools of steelworks
Where a dank drizzle of black fog crept
Beneath the smoking stacks of chimney pots
Moody, sullen; sinuously sleeping
Dreaming of floods and inundation
Beauty and terror in its spate.

Then a week ago the heavens opened
A mighty deluge from dawn through to dusk
Four inches in a day, the Don swelled
Roared with tumultuous rage and fury
A murky morass of vile infusions
A sustained metaphor of reclamation
Oozing into shopping malls and side streets
Stretching itself over its wide flood plain.

Wicker Street now a greased grey torrent
The tactile river embracing all
Shoppers stumbling in waist-deep water
Workers rescued by helicopter
A child and an old man sucked down to doom
And driving on through the evening mist
A river hungry for apocalypse.

Copyright © 2008 by John Stocks

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